Tell Us What You Really Think, Martin!

One of the emotional perils of being out here in the progressive online world trying to make sense of a complicated political scene is to maintain equilibrium when the people who command generous salaries with benefits for distributing a laughably small amount of content to a huge fixed readership say stupid things. Regular readers know I just have to go off on Peggy Noonan and Richard Cohen and David Brooks and Ron Fournier now and then, and to the extent there is personal animus involved, it’s at the horrible waste of prime journalistic real estate by very comfortable people who phone in banalities or hackish hits jobs or sycophancy.

Well, at Ten Miles Square today my colleague Martin Longman hits the wall over a Ruth Marcus column at WaPo scolding the president for not being respectful enough to opponents of the Iranian nuclear deal, which she says she fully supports:

We need to freeze this Ruth Marcus column in amber so that it never perishes. Future generations will not believe that it actually existed if they can’t see it with their own eyes. It is probably the purest form of wankery that has ever been constructed. I thought I had seen Peak Beltway Trolling, but I had not seen anything.

Tell us what you really think, Martin!

I was amazed at the Marcus column as well, but less because of the internal contradictions of Marcus’ position, which is what enrages Martin. It struck me as confirmation that until the day Barack Obama leaves office, he will be blamed for the irrational rage and obstructionism of his opponents no matter what he does.

Think about what that opposition has said and done on the Iran deal: they invited a foreign head-of-government to attack it in the U.S. Congress while negotiations were still ongoing; they denounced it as treason before they had even read its terms; and now the presidential candidates among them are swearing they will abrogate it at the very first opportunity. And Obama is supposed to respect these people and those who have fecklessly joined them with their finicky misgivings?

Okay, guess we don’t need two WaMo bloggers all worked up on this. We need to save some anger for Peggy and Richard and David and Ron.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.