26.12.15

THE PRESIDENT IS NOT YOUR SAVIOUR.

It's fitting for the Feast of Stephen that Reason's David Harsanyi reminds readers that "The government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor" is sacred, not profane.  Take Donald Trump and Barack Obama.
Trump's entire case, for instance, is propelled by the notion that a single (self-identified) competent, a strong-willed president, without any perceptible deference to the foundational ideals of the nation, will be able to smash any cultural or political obstacles standing in the way of Making America Great Again.

But this is certainly not the first time we've seen voters adopt a cultish reverence for a strong-willed presidential candidate without any perceptible deference to the foundational ideals of the country whose personal charisma was supposed to shatter obstacles standing in the way of making America great again. Many of the same people anxious about the authoritarian overtones of Trump's appeal were unconcerned about the intense adulation that adoring crowds showered on Barack Obama in 2008, though the spectacle featured similarly troubling signs—the iconography, the messianic messaging and the implausible promises of government-produced comfort and safety. Just as President Trump fans will judge every person on how nice or mean he or she is to Trump, so, too, those rooting against Obama were immediately branded unpatriotic or racist.

Obama's inevitable failure to live up to the hype has had many repercussions—and none of them healthy.
"Cultish reverence," forsooth.

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