Wow — Obama is Anti-Colonial!

Senator Jim DeMint likes to claim that Barack Obama is to the “left of Europe.” In this Daily Caller opinion piece I argue the Senator should actually acquaint himself with what is going on in Europe — and, as an example, in the UK — if he cares to be tethered to reality.  While Obama wants to prolong the Bush tax cuts for all but two percent of Americans, the Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition in Britain is hiking taxes, fees and levies at every turn. Obama wants to cut small business taxes. In the UK small businesses are under a greater tax burden. You get the point.

But I wish Obama opponents would agree on the most appropriate epithet to hurl at the President. One moment he’s a Muslim, a Socialist, a National Socialist, a Marxist, a European-style Social Democrat, a Liberal, etc. Oh, yes, he is apparently steeped also in anti-colonial thinking! As my novelist friend Jim McKean points out, when was that a bad thing in America — I thought that was the whole point of the American Revolution.

He Who Lives by the Blog Can Die by it too.

Gutter politics in London – shock! Gordon Brown had no choice but to sack his Downing Street press adviser Damian McBride after the leaking of a series of e-mails he sent to fellow Labour adviser Derek Draper detailing a potential smears campaign against top British Tories. If he hadn’t done so, the clamour would have only got louder.

But Draper isn’t helping Downing Street by arguing in media interviews that McBride shouldn’t have had to go, and his claim that this was just a matter of e-mails between some mates is absurd. They might have decided not to use the material they were concocting but the e-mails leaked to blogger Guido Fawkes show that McBride and Draper were getting down to tactical details on how to make the online smears campaign really work.

In the e-mail exchanges about what stories they could spread, initially by using Labour blogs they run, the two discuss how the stories should be deployed in sequence to maximise their impact, and Draper says he will think about the “timing and technology” in order to boost the credibility of the smears.

At no point in their exchanges do they voice doubt about the morality of what they are doing or embarrassment about making up vile allegations or adding lies to half-truths.

Conservative blogger Iain Dale – who himself has been a target of McBride and Draper – compares what the two were doing to Nixon. At first, I thought this was stretch. But thinking about the pattern of tactics employed in recent months against opponents by some at the heart of government, there seems some substance to Dale’s comparison. Like Nixon, there is total, unabashed ruthlessness when dealing with critics and a willingness to use, for example, the police on opponents – recall, for example, the calling in of the anti-terrorist squad into Parliament to root out who was leaking to the Tories embarrassing details about immigration cock-ups.

But the Web is the Wild West and e-mails and blogs can be turned around on you.