Monday, April 28, 2008

Who Is ‘They’?

by Victor Hanson Davis - April 25th, 2008 - National Review Online

Inside the Obama mind.

“They”? Who in the hell is “they”?

— Lyle Gorch in The Wild Bunch

Recently Barack Obama got into trouble by explaining to an affluent San Francisco audience why the cash-strapped, mostly white, working classes in Pennsylvania and the Midwest do not logically vote for his brand of economic populism, but instead cling to issues that sophisticates can see are extraneous to their economic plight.

And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

That sentence has been analyzed to death. But a single word struck me — who are Obama’s distant they?

Obama uses pronouns as a way to be ambiguous and let everyone wonder what he means. He is as slippery as anyone who ever ran for public office. He never attacks directly and he always deflects attacks, in both cases as a learned strategy to be hard to pin down and also hard to hit. His Pastor goes on an anti-American rant and Obama responds with a dialog about race. He is very smooth. However this article goes a long way to showing the strategy's real intent. Very good article.


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