October 1, 2012 | 5:15 am
Posted by Rabbi John Rosove
As we enter the last weeks of the presidential election campaign I confess to being confounded by the intensity of hatred felt and expressed by many Republicans towards President Obama.
Yes, there are policy differences between Democrats and Republicans.
Yes, people blame (wrongly!) this President for the nation’s economic woes.
Yes, millions actually believe the “Birther” claims that Obama is “foreign,” Muslim and “other.”
And yes, there is racism.
Here is yet another possibility originally noted by H.L. Mencken (1880-1956) more than fifty years ago: “Jealousy of the superior man is a constant corrosive element in society.”
What else except jealousy joined with ignorance, stupidity, fear, anger, bigotry, selfishness, myopic thinking, and God knows what else could account for the depth of animus directed at this President?
Obama, truth to tell, is far more centrist than left. He is not an ideologue. Rather, he is pragmatic and conciliatory as an analysis clearly shows in Sunday’s New York Times of the ways in which The Affordable Care Act (i.e. “Obamacare”) is based on conservative values (see “The Conservative Case for Obamacare” by J.D. Kelinke, September 30, 2012, “Sunday Review,” p.4).
After reading the article, no reasonable person can come to any conclusion except that Republican haters of Obama and Obamacare (fed by Republican Senate and Congressional leadership) have gone off the deep end, cannot analyze policy options without a serious overlay of emotional/political bias, could actually care less about policy and are consumed with the need for self-aggrandizement and moral self-justification. Many of these same folks hated Bill Clinton with equal intensity when he was President and, I assume, will spare nothing against Hilary should she toss her hat in the ring for the 2016 presidential race.
What do Obama and Clinton have in common (other than being male and Democratic Presidents) that inspires such hatred?
Mencken put it deftly; “Jealousy of the superior man.”
Though not without their flaws few politicians are as smart, clear-thinking, knowledgeable, thick-skinned, eloquent, skilled, and talented as are Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.
Their charisma and excellence must drive the Republicans to distraction as they have no one of equal talent in this race or on the horizon!
I pray that the haters don’t succeed in corroding the inner moral character of this country further and are turned back handsomely on November 6 in the presidential race and Congress.
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