Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Has Obama already been corrupted?

David Brooks describes the incident that led him to develop his man crush on Obama:
I was interviewing Obama a couple years ago, and I'm getting nowhere with the interview, it's late in the night, he's on the phone, walking off the Senate floor, he's cranky. Out of the blue I say, 'Ever read a guy named Reinhold Niebuhr?' And he says, 'Yeah.' So i say, 'What did Niebuhr mean to you?' For the next 20 minutes, he gave me a perfect description of Reinhold Niebuhr's thought, which is a very subtle thought process based on the idea that you have to use power while it corrupts you.
A first I thought it sounded good. But, then the following insight dawned on me, Obama's response is an implicit acknowledgement that he has been studying how to use power to achieve his "noble" ends (i.e., liberal policies) before he gets corrupted and uses the powers available to him to commit "ignoble" acts (i.e., oppressing his opponents, stuffing ballot boxes, ignoring laws, etc). Considering that it appears that Obama has already been corrupted by so little actual power, shouldn't America dread giving this man the real power that comes with being President?

Update: Stephen Green of Vodka Pundit has a post where he wonders about whether Obama will suppress free speech rights on the internet via the Fairness Doctrine.