So two of this week’s big moments are likely to feature Barack Obama at the United Nations. Tomorrow he’s speaking at a UN session on climate change. And on Wednesday we will personally wield the gavel at a meeting of the Security Council called to discuss collective action against Islamic State.

To hard-core conservatives, both appearances carry a whiff of treason, as an American president seeks to bargain away God-given property rights in pursuit of the satanic idea of regulating development to make it consistent with the planet’s environmental capacity, in the very cockpit of Agenda 21, and then tramples upon U.S. sovereignty by seeking international sanction for national security measures.

But this side of semi-Birchers, Republicans may feel constrained to distinguish between the two appearances and attack the first categorically and the second contingently. Since even good presidents find it prudent to secure coalition assistance for military actions, Obama will be criticized not for going to the Security Council but for insufficient forcefulness and self-righteousness in rallying the world. The script is already writing itself.

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Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.