By Selwyn Duke
There’s no one who says, “Yeah, he was a radical guy in his youth, and I just couldn’t believe how he became disenchanted with his old ideas.” There are no stories about a great epiphany, an overseas trip that opened his eyes, or a personal tragedy that inspired growth. There’s nothing to explain how a radical Marxist became a reasonable politician. And if there is such an explanation, it’s the most elusive of missing links.
I’ve wondered the same thing about our president myself. A couple of points: (1) No one should be held too accountable for what he said or believed in college; liberalism is the air most of us breathe on campus, only to be dissipated when we get out into the real world and start growing up. (Unfortunately for Obama, it doesn’t appear he has ever made the transition to the real world.) (2) We need to be sure Duke takes into account any countervailing facts for his analysis, such as the fact that the president has stocked the innards of his administration with old Clinton hands. While they are surely liberals, to call them Marxists seems over the top.
Yet I would like to hear of Obama’s conversion to become the moderate most of us hoped he would be. So far, he has done nothing to reassure me on that score.