Back to the Future

On MSNBC the other night we got a glimpse of the future, a sneak peek into what we can expect from some liberal journalists as the campaign for president heats up.  Let’s just say the future, unfortunately, looks a lot like the past.

Our tour guide was liberal journalist and author Richard Wolffe, who was the White House correspondent for Newsweek and is now an MSNBC contributor.  He’s always been a big fan of Barack Obama, a loyal member of the president’s base, but this time he outdid himself. Asked about the dust-up over what night President Obama would be allowed to speak to a joint session of Congress – the president wanted to speak Wednesday, the same day as a Republican presidential debate; House Speaker John Boehner said, no, try Thursday – Wolffe said this:

“The interesting question is: What is it about this president that has stripped away the veneer of respect that normally accompanies the office of the president? Why do Republicans think this president is un-presidential and should dare to request this kind of thing? It strikes me that it could be the economic times, it could be that he won so big in 2008 or it could be, let’s face it, the color of his skin.”

Before we get to the ugly, unsubstantiated, reckless accusation of racism, let’s first consider Wolffe’s supposed concern about “respect” for the office of the president.  As Peter Wehner put it in a piece for Commentary magazine, “Funny, but I don’t recall the ‘veneer of respect that normally accompanies the office of the president’ when the chief executive was a man named George W. Bush. During the Bush presidency, for example, George W. Bush was referred to by leading members of the Democratic Party as a ‘moral coward’ (Vice President Al Gore), as a ‘loser’ and a ‘liar’ who had ‘betrayed his country’ (Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid), and who ‘week after week after week after week … told lie after lie after lie after lie’ (Senator Edward Kennedy). But in a remarkable feat of self-control, Wolffe was able to keep his moral outrage in check.”

Yes, Wolffe is now an opinion journalist and opinion journalists are entitled to their opinions.  But this kind of “analysis” reminds me of Chris Matthews’ embarrassing line about how he got a thrill running up his leg when he heard Barack Obama speak.  This is not political analysis.  This is a man crush.  And both Matthews and Wolffe have it – though this is not unusual for people who work at Obama Media Headquarters, also known as MSNBC.

But it’s the last part of Wolffe’s commentary that goes beyond embarrassing to truly pathetic – the part about race.  There is no reason to believe that Boehner refused permission to Mr. Obama because of “the color of his skin,” as Wolffe suggests.  And Wolffe doesn’t even bother to offer any proof to back up his accusation.  He simply says, “Let’s face it, the color of his skin” as if he’s doing nothing more than stating the obvious.

It may be obvious to Richard Wolffe and his fellow liberals who need to see racism at every turn in order to feel morally superior to those hateful conservatives. But we’ve seen this movie before.  Anyone who disagrees with Mr. Obama about almost anything runs the risk of having some liberal journalist call him a racist.  It’s getting way beyond tiresome.

To make such a charge, absent anything vaguely resembling proof, is, as Peter Wehner says, “slanderous.”  Expect a lot more slander from journalists and other liberals as we move toward Election Day 2012 – especially if President Obama’s prospects for re-election look dim.

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  • Ralph Hahn

    >>> …who ‘week after week after week after week … told lie after lie after lie after lie’ (Senator Edward Kennedy). <<<

    RIP, Ted, and all of that, but…wha…???? Who's calling whom a liar???

  • Brendan Horn

    I truly believe that one of the main reasons that Obama was so supported during the 2008 election by elite liberals was because these liberals wanted to make the cheap charge of “racism” against conservatives who would obviously never support such a liberal candidate as Obama. It is hard to disprove the racist charge and just throwing it out there helped to plant the idea in peoples heads. I think a lot of moderates actually did vote for Obama because it made them feel good about themselves voting for a person with an African father. I do not believe moderates will vote this way in 2012. Obama now will have to run on his record which is not impressive. Throwing cheap “racist” charges will probably backfire this time around because it just reeks of desperation. The economy is the issue of this race. No other issue will register this time around.

  • Jay

    On O’Reilly tonight, Bernard Goldberg opined that the questions were fair at last night’s debate. I disagree. The questions were generally loaded with two or three prefaces from the questioners. That was my problem, because there’s no way anyone can properly respond when the question is loaded several ways. If you’re gonna ask a loaded question, at least keep to one thing. The basic questions were probably okay, but to state a bunch of assumptions first makes them unfair.

  • Proe Graphique

    The left has been using racism against whites for decades and it’s so bad that Obama’s minions have started to successfully brand Sarah Palin as “trailer trash” when the term could not possibly apply. In response to this and in defense of Palin, ObamaFake makes a cultural – but not racial – graphic analysis, using plenty of photographs, to determine whether Barack and Michelle Obama are “trailer trash” using the standard by which their own liberal elite supporters classify whites with whom they disagree politically with the same demeaning epithet.

    It’s here:

  • Chester A. Arthur


    When will you write a follow-up piece on the “birther” article you wrote? It’s not nice to abandon the class.

    • Ron Kean

      Good thought but I imagine he’d rather write about nuclear physics and rocket science.

      • Proe Graphique

        It has been months since Bernie, who I ordinarily like, said he’s follow up that birther hit piece he wrote. So what’s the deal? Top experts like Newcomer, whose analysis of the Killian documents got Dan Rather fired from CBS News, says it’s a fake, and so do a thousand other experts. So do I, incidentally – the thing is so pathetic it isn’t even funny: the history of the creation of the forgery – the program commands – are actually embedded in the document itself!

        So let’s go, folks. Let’s have another birther hit piece. Let the journalists and Obama defenders and everyone else who have no expertise or street cred in graphics or document analysis say that Newcomer and Zebest and a thousand other graphics professionals don’t know what they’re talking about. It isn’t fair to make us wait. Let’s go, folks. Game on.

  • Terry Walbert

    I can visualize Matthews and Wolffe at an Obama rally. Suddenly the Secret Service descends on them and pulls them aside because it looks like they have guns in their pockets.

    But, loh, Matthews and Wolffe are just glad to see President Obama.

  • EddieD_Boston

    Need any more proof liberalism is a mental disorder?

    This is my take…they’re desperate. Plain and simple. Obama is in over his head even these fools have figured it out. There is a good chance Republicans will win in November of 2012 and control the House and Senate and occupy the White House.

    The little wimps are scared and figure the race card is their only hope. They really don’t get it do they?

  • joedee1969

    The press has already showed all this with no anti-war coverage:

  • Neal Angel

    Assuming that Wolfe is correct that Boehner & Co. are “dissing” the President because of his skin color, would it be fair to assume that Obama was motivated by skin color when he told the GOP to shut up & get in the back of the bus?

  • Glen Stambaugh

    I’m not sure whether the “skin color” as a reason springs from delusion or tactical motivation. I’m leaning toward tactical, but when afflicted with a blinding “man crush” any combination of the two is possible.

  • Kathie Ampela

    Now who wants to bet that this is an orchestrated strategy…keep playing the race card until all hope is lost…then Hillary steps in as challenger. Actually, that’s not a bad idea..the race card will backfire and we’ll be rid of her too 😉 After all, if Hillary ends up challenging Obama doesn’t that make her a racist too? I’m still trying to figure out the progressive worldview..I’m reading “Progressivism for Dummies” 😉

  • Jeffreydan

    My response to Wolfe’s 1st question:
    “This president” has…
    A) ignored & shut out Republicans during the healthcare debate
    B) repeatedly & falsely accused them of not offering any ideas
    c) wished out loud that critics of his policies would shut up and get out of his way
    D) rubbed their faces in it (“I looked out the window…”) the day after Obamacare passed
    E) accused doctors of amputating limbs unnecessarily for profit
    F) called Republicans “hostage-takers”
    G) while talking about fixing the economy, said Republicans were allowed to ride along, but had to sit in the back
    H) etc. etc. etc.
    In other words, “this president” is the one who stripped away the veneer of respect, and he then proceeded to shred it and set it on fire.
    My response to Wolfe’s 2nd question:
    Why would any clear-thinking person think this president is presidential at all?

    • T. Ivison

      Amen brother

  • RecknHavic

    This is the same Leftist playbook they’ve been using for decades: conservatives are racists; Republicans hate the middle class; the GOP is the party of the rich…yada yada yada..

  • Jean from Lake Ariel

    As usual Bernie, very well said! I am always amazed that people can justify their actions i.e. those who were totally disrespectful of George W. Bush but are quick to call out anyone who even critizes or disagrees with President Obama as being disrespectful. It seems disrespect is allowed when you are not in agreement with the person occupying the office. Unfortunately I suspect this is only the beginning and will get much worse before the 2012 election. Good for you for calling this hypocrisy out whenever you see it, whether it comes from the right or the left. Hypocrisy does not come from one side only but unfortunately the mainstream media is one-sided.

  • T. Ivison

    Mr. Wolffe overlooks the narcissistic personality disorder the Obama administration (and liberals like Wolffe) suffer from.

    The recent dust up between President Obama and Speaker Boehner highlights two of many narcissistic thinking errors the Obama administration suffers from.

    Thinking error #1: The Obama administration fancies itself as an imperial presidency. Somehow, they are different, more special than any administration that has come before. The normal rules of protocol do not apply to them. Constitutional restrictions regarding separation of powers were meant to apply to lesser presidents. This administration is different: the constitution does not apply. The president can pick a date off the calendar for his jobs speech without consultation with congress, and congress must fall in line, end of story, no back talk.

    The reality is, there is no such thing as an imperial presidency. The president is only one branch of three separate and equal parts of the federal government. Congress, and John Boehner, are not imperial subjects of the president. The speaker of the house controls the House of Representatives, not King Barry.

    Thinking error #2: Obama’s gang in the White House, and liberals like Wolffe, believe they are the smartest people in the land. People outside their group, including Boehner and America at large, are simple country rubes, who lack insight, and can easily be fooled. When asked about the conflicting date between Obama’s jobs speech and the long scheduled Republican debate, Press Secretary Jay Carney said with a straight face that the conflict was just a coincidence. Those silly simpletons out in the hither land, they will believe anything we say, so goes the Obama thinking.

    The reality is, Obama’s guys are not the smartest people on the planet. These goofs are the gang that can’t shoot straight. Americans are smart people and can see through the Obama spin. Americans see this administration’s political games for what they are, petty and silly.

    Interesting weekend up date: Sunday, on “The Chris Mathews Show” , liberal pundits, without realizing it, spoke openly about Obama’s narcissistic traits. One stated that “you can see it in his face”, he has disdain for his opposition because they are such dummies, and he is so brilliant. Chris Mathews went on to explain how Obama enjoyed the “King” part of his job, the formality, the pomp, but he did not like the “Prime Minister” part of the job, having to deal with ignorant people.

    • Crash

      Well said. I keep having this vision of Chris Matthews crying like a little school girl after Obama loses in 2012.

  • Neil Johnston Rouse 2nd

    I keep holding out the distant hope they will give up on this, all too old race baiting, and change their behavior to something almost resembling a civilized discourse. I keep hoping to see it backfire on them. But as with so many hopey / changey things……

  • Ron Kean

    You brought it up before and it was taken as tongue in cheek but I’m leaning on taking it seriously now. Let’s call THEM racists.

    Actually, we, your fans can only do it small. I only write on two other sites and if any other of your fans are like me, they’re small time too. You brought it up.

    How dangerous to your career would it be to call Maxine Waters, any number of those CBCers, any number of commentators on every station besides FOX, Bill Maher!…Racist! Because of the color of his (her) skin, this or that happened or somebody said something on the air.

    Rush Limbaugh: ‘If They Ever Do a Colonoscopy on Obama They’re Gonna Find Richard Wolffe’s Head There’. Chris Matthews felt his leg tingle. Is ‘Man Crush’ now an acceptable substitute for Gay? Probably. You could see how that one would fly too.

  • John Daly

    Well said. People need to stand up and condemn garbage like this. We need to see interviewers with guts calling people out on comments like this the moment they’re spoken.

  • Nancye

    I hate to call it to the attention of libs, but the race card has expired. Nobody is scared of it anymore. Nobody pays any attention to it anymore. Eveybody is sick of being accused of being a racist.

    Hey liberals: GET OVER IT !!!

    • HolyChristAlmighty

      Oh, how I wish your words were true!

  • James

    Typical.. Glad you pointed it out again Bernie.

  • DOOM161

    Mr. Wolffe isn’t a very good journalist, even by liberal standards. He didn’t even mention the obvious answer: Obama wanted to have his big speech (which he calls a plan) the same night as a long scheduled republican presidential debate. I don’t know why he expected Boehner to let that happen, other than than the usual megalomania.