We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

I might be wrong, but I don’t think a fellow who works at a gas station in the Midwest whose wife works as a nurse and commutes 27 miles a day and complains more about the cost of gas than the cost of dance lessons regards Obama as One of Us. They may like his views on this issue or that, and they may well vote for him in the name of Change or a serious belief in Obama’s positions, but if you grew up in a community that was already pretty well organized on its own, you might look at a Harvard grad “community organizer” who had the time and luxury to write an autobiography before he was 50 as something other than One of Us in the “second-shift / Costco” sense.

- The wonderful James Lileks.

Mind you, I am more interested in cutting the state down to size, rather than worrying whether Joe Sixpack or an old Etonian is in Downing Street or the Whitehouse.

7 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Ham

    Obama did not have an especially auspicious upbringing; most of what he has achieved was done by hard work and talent. He has not, as far as I can see, attempted to affect the air of a ‘salt of the earth’ type, as George Bush so embarrassingly did in previous contests. I disagree with his approach to government, of course, but his background is not the basis for doing so.

  • Texpatriate

    Beg to differ. Obama makes much of his days as a community organizer, emphasizing how much income he foreswore to take the job fresh out of law school.

    His wife (known in some quarters as his ‘bitter half’) has also spoken of her agonies in juggling private school and summer camp on her meager income, and how book royalties are all that saved the family from groaning under the weight of educatonal loans for Ivy League degrees.

    All progressives assume the lumpen proles naturally look up to them, and have to be reassured that their betters empathize with them. The efforts usually come off as clumsy and strained as a royal visit to the works. Which is what Lileks is writing about.

  • Millie Woods

    All the delusional Obama worshippers should just get over it. The Obamas are as dumb as mud flaps and got their Ivy League status through affirmative action. Michelle talks black but wants to live upperclass white while her spouse is so ignorant of the country he wants to lead he thinks there are 57 states in the US – maybe he gets his geographical numerals from Heinz products’ 57 varieties slogan.
    Meanwhile his knowledge of world geography and natural resources is not much better since he believes Afghanistan is an oil peoducer.
    He too like most lefties erroneously takes it for granted that a knowledge of French which BTW neither he nor the unlovely Michelle possess puts one in the Einstein league and seems unable to grasp the point that francophonie consists of a community of seventy million worldwide whereas the anglosphere embraces almost half a billion native speakers with one hundred million users of it as a second language in India alone. Incidentally he is probably unaware that Rwanda has just dumped French as an official language in favour of English .
    But then his salivating sycophants are just as ignorant, arrogant and arithmetically challenged as he.

  • Britt

    You know, many people in the libertarian corner tend to roll their eyes at the constant “just a regular guy” machinations that pervade American politics. County fairs and breakfast at a railcar diner may seem like nothing more then political posturing, but it serves an important role. The fact is that political elites, regardless of affiliation, have a marked tendency to forget about the people while they are in Washington, DC. For historical examples, one could luck at Lenin and Stalin, collectivizing villages neither of them had ever visited. Or, for a more modern example, look at the plurality of Britons who support the death penalty, or look at the blatant defiance the various governments of Europe show to the will of the people on the EU referendum. While one could make the case that we’d be better off without the “down home” stage show, I would say that it is very important that the political class smells some actual horseshit once in a while.

  • Rich

    The fact is that political elites, regardless of affiliation, have a marked tendency to forget about the people while they are in Washington, DC.

    I sure wish they’d forget about me!

  • Eamon Brennan

    I would have to disagree on one point Ham. I think, objectively, George Bush’s, down on the farm, one of the guys routine is superb. For an Ivy League oligarch, he plays the horny handed Texan son of toil brilliantly, or at least he seems to from my admittedly removed perspective.

  • Paul Marks

    “Hardwork and talent”.

    Perhaps.

    But have a look at Cliff Kincaid’s “Obama’s Communist Mentor” – Aim Column, Accuracy in Media, Feb 18th this year.

    Obama even had (via his mother) powerful communist friends as a child.

    For a collectivist the academic path is not that hard.

    I can remember total morons being awarded D.Phil’s at the University of York (U.K.) – those morons all had the same sort of political opinions (chance?).

    A guy who thinks there are 56 States and tells a story (many times) about his mother and father first met at the Selma bridge protest – when the protest was in 1965 and he was born in 1961.

    How talented is he?

    Still the basic point is not Senator Obama talent (or lack of it) it is his collectivism.

    For example, the fact that he believes that communities are something created by political activists – such as himself (in his mission from Harvard to Chicago).

    A true spiritual son of Saul Alinsky.