January 22nd, 2009
11:22 AM ET

The conciliatory radical

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/21/art.boseal0121.gi.jpg]

David Frum
The Week

In the heady first days after a thumping political victory, the new leader’s triumphant followers murmur to one another of their admiration for their man.

“You know, the president is right.”

“I’d go further—he’s completely right!’

“You’re both wrong. He’s absolutely right!”

Ah, the romantic phase of political engagement! It was like that for Republicans in the Reagan days. Now it seems the same for Democrats like Shrum, who wrote: “I’m convinced Obama’s right to pursue the politics of change in his own remarkable fashion.”


Filed under: Democrats • President Barack Obama • Raw Politics • Republicans
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Nissanka Wickramasekera

    As a foreigner blogging in, never did I ever think, self-destructive ways created by a regime as arrogant as they were, can ever be reversed any day soon, but thanks to a wonderful young president with his community organizer expertise and by selecting Madam Secretary Clinton, Richard Holbrooke & George Mitchell as special envoys "Peace is now a distinct possibility". I am very hopeful and confident in your President Barak Obama. Believe me; respect for America, will soon be restored to the levels she proudly held for years as far as I could remember. God Bless you and U.S.A.

    January 22, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  2. Gene Penszynski from Vermont

    Mr. Frum,
    The similarities to the Reagan era are indeed there even though they are 180 degrees out of phase with each other. This election has indeed set the stage for a paradigm shift in American politics. One squarely to the left this time around.
    In many respects President Obama is a mirror image of President Reagan. Both able to communicate very well and both focues on what they believe best for America and not just their dogmatic core supporters. Like Mr. Reagan, Mr. Obama I believe will compromise when necessary and will have the good character and good sense to admit they are only human and can and will make mistakes along the way.
    The bottom line is that the American Political pendulum has swung way too far to the Right under G W Bush in much the same way that the same pendulum had swung way too far to the left under Jimmy Carter. The time has come for it to begin moving back to the center once again. This time it will be approaching that center from the left as opposed to approaching it from the right but the result I feel will be the same. There will be a renewed sense stability and reason and the worlds last best hope for human liberty will not perish from the face of the earth. The world in turn will become a better place in which to live.

    Americans for some unknown reason have that uncanny sense of intollorence toward extremes once we are beset with them. Let us all pray to our repsective makers that we never loose it !

    January 22, 2009 at 2:06 pm |