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Obama Plays The Philip Roth Card


Recently, the part-time occupation of the part-time Jews in major media outlets has been to tackle Barack Obama’s Jewish problem head on, in the same way a major corporation tackles the revelation that its product is fatally toxic to babies – by a shaking of heads, some weak smiles, and an assurance to the public that it’s all in our heads.

If we’re to believe The New York Times, The Washington Post and the rest of the good people at Media Central, the whole Jewish problem with Obama is the result of some provocative e-mails, sent out by Karl Rove in his spare time to some gullible senior citizens, that unfairly paint Obama as a Muslim.

“There, there,” the media mavens assure these seniors, “Obama isn’t a Muslim. He’s the Messiah come to lead us to the promised land of Big Government, Cuban-quality health care, and environmental taxes on every ounce of bread we eat.”

Oh, and on the way there he may stop by the Middle East to lead Hamas to Jerusalem.

“Hasn’t Obama said he’s pro-Israel?” the liberal columnists wail. “How many times does he need to say it?” They don’t stick around to hear the reply that he doesn’t need to say it, he needs to be it.

For individuals who toil in an ostensibly skeptical profession, these journalists and pundits seem oddly offended that anyone would take a politician’s statements in an election year with a grain of salt.

“Listen to the man,” they say, “and pay no attention to the Zbigniew Brzezinskis, George Soroses, Tony Lakes and Robert Malleys behind the curtain.”

Those in the media who until recently were doing their best to pretend that the only people who could possibly oppose Obama were Satanists or, worse yet, evangelical Christians, have now decided that the only Democrats who oppose Obama are the senile elderly, hysterical feminists, or rednecks.

And those media types are certain that once Obama is officially anointed the Democratic nominee, the above-mentioned groups, along with all those ignorant folks in Brooklyn and Miami Beach, will fall into line at the polls.

For now, some of the Jewish organizations are holding out for more assurances from Obama, but such tempered skepticism will no doubt fall away the instant Obama stops by for a meet and greet over bagels and lox and tells everyone at the table how much he enjoyed “Fiddler on the Roof.”

To that end, Obama is already reimagining himself as a Zionist thanks to a Jewish sixth-grade camp counselor and speaking of his love for the novels of Leon Uris and Philip Roth. While it’s safe to assume that Obama won’t be giving any readings of Uris’s The Haj, a book that captures with unnerving accuracy the psychological fault lines of Arab culture, he is displaying a talent more worthy of the literary works of writers such as F. Scott Fitzgerald and Theodore Dreiser – the gift of the true con artist, an ability to recreate himself into what people most want to see.

Obama hasn’t begun name-dropping Uris and Roth out of a sudden love for Jewish writers. Instead, he’s discovered a sudden love of the things that interest those elderly and middle-aged Jewish voters who until now have jilted him. Like the cynical suitor who studies a girl’s habits to discover her tastes and then mirrors them in order to seduce her, Obama has made it his practice to jump in and out of identities and personas.

Today Obama is reading Leon Uris. Tomorrow there’s a rally in San Francisco and he’s reading Amy Tan. The day after that he will be connecting to feminists by namedropping Erica Jong.

Which selection in the infinitely expandable Obama Book Club best reflects who he is? The answer is none of them. The only thing that genuinely reflects the true Obama is his determination to be president and his willingness to say anything to make it happen.

Jews who refuse to be seduced by Obama are permitting a larger moral reckoning to win out over the cheap ethnic pandering engaged in by the Obama campaign. Philip Roth indeed.

As Obama’s cult of personality spreads, millions of Americans are throwing reason and rationality out the window to embrace the promise of a one-man solution to all their problems.

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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