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The Cult of Obama

Cult

The Obama campaign never sold Obama; it sold the idea of Obama. The illusion that was more than the sum of his false biography, his chin up speeches full of momentous pauses and stolen poetry, or the typography of his posters. It was the sense of imminence, the perception of a transformative figure who could change the country and the world. That magnetic tug wasn’t Obama, it was the confused mess of desires, fears, hopes, dreams and wishes that the people were encouraged to project onto him.

The essential product of every cult is the promise of global transformation through personal transformation. Years later, few people can say that their lives are any better, and while many are still willing to echo Jim Jones and blame that on outside enemies, there is no real faith that the program can work.

Whether or not Obama wins again, his cult has failed. It failed because it was not able to deliver on its promises of transformation, nor was it able to place the blame on its followers. Most of those who voted for Obama will drink the Kool-Aid one more time, but there will be little enthusiasm in the drinking of it.

About the Author: Daniel Greenfield is an Israeli born blogger and columnist, and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. His work covers American, European and Israeli politics as well as the War on Terror. His writing can be found at http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/. The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of The Jewish Press.


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10 Responses to “The Cult of Obama”

  1. Charlie Hall says:

    I have never heard President Obama described in cult- like or messiah-like terms by any Democrats, nor seen him described as such by any left-leaning publications or internet sites. It is only right wing pundits such as Sultan Knish who promote this nonexistent cult.

  2. Shlomo Pill says:

    Maybe you haven't seen it, but I can tell you that I am often astounded by the fawning, cultish, obsessive attitudes about the President and his reelection campaign exhibited by ostensibly reasonable and objective law students (with whom I went to school). Not to say that it doesn't happen on the right either; it does. But there is definitely a sense among some intelligent, thinking liberals that the End of Days are neigh, and if only we can all just get behind the President he will make EVERYTHING better.

  3. Charlie Hall says:

    The only cult I see in politics today is the Ron Paul phenomenon.

  4. Charlie multiple posters have been made that position him as a messiah like figure. Next time I see one I will take a photo for you.

  5. Ezzie Goldish says:

    Charlie really? Read tons of pieces, have heard countless people say it.

  6. Shlomo Pill says:

    This is why I try to avoid political affiliations and election campaigns entirely, and confine myself to thinking about policy, law, and politics, in the abstract – politics has the uncanny tendency to blind the most reasonable academic minds to all but that which conforms to their own partisan predisposition. Bias is fine; wearing blinders that prevent you from acknowledging your bias is not.

  7. Mark Pelta says:

    But Shlomo, doesn't your reasoning kinda refute the piece in and of itself? Politics per se is a bit cultish, not as bad as a cult to a niftar gadol whose followers still think he's moshiach say (I speak of course of Rav Reagan), but cultish. What make the cult to Obama different than every other cult?

  8. Shlomo Pill says:

    No difference, really. Dr. Hall's was arguing (like many other partisan Democrats – or partisan Republicans) that while Republican's might be cultish about their chosen political champions, the ever reasonable and fair-minded liberal Democrats are certainly not cultish in their support of the President, and that any allegation that they are is merely a fiction invented by right-wingers intent on discrediting the reelection campaign and its supporters. I was simply pointing out that this is not true – there are cultish Obama-ites, and that the cultists can count among their ranks some of the most reasonable, intelligent, and educated people in the liberal political camp.

  9. Charlie Hall says:

    You certainly don't see anything like cultish following on the major liberal internet sites. Half of dailykos considers Obama to be a Corporatist Right Winger.

    Would you folks who insist that there is a cult please supply some recent links as examples?

  10. Cathlin Hess says:

    You want to talk cult? Fawning over Obama or Romney doesn't warrant the term "cult-like" at all. You want to talk cult? Learn about Mormonism. It isn't just another branch of Christianity (I'm an agnostic, so I've got no alterior motive here), it's based on the teachings of an illiterate criminal, telling of Jesus here in America. They baptize dead Jews. Men are the heads of families – known as "priest-holders," they believe married women can get into heaven (the "Celestial Kingdom") ONLY if their husband pulls them through the veil (same with their secret marriage ceremonies). A woman's duty is to produce as many children as possible for the Holy Father and to increase their numbers. This Obama/Romney cult talk is stupid. Look very carefully at the GOP candidate and his belief system and practices. There's a cult for you. A large cult, but a cult nonetheless.

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