September 10, 2003

LILEKS SPAWNS a pro-Dean meme:

Dean, perversely, might have a freer hand – the right couldn’t complain if he moved against Axis O’ Evil countries, and the editorialists would applaud him until their palms bled, because he was one of them, and had redefined Bush’s Whee-Ha- Cowboy Crusade into a struggle for civilization’s survival. (Note: fine by me. If American jets take out Iranian enrichment facilities, I don’t give a tinker’s damn if the man who gave the go-order was a D or an R. I can live with triumphalism from the NYT editorial page writers exhalting President Dean for his farsighted attack.)

This is actually plausible, and suggests a way in which Dean’s biggest weakness — he’s a bit of a jerk — might actually serve him well, by making him look more formidable. Sure the antiwar folks who provided him with his surge would be disappointed (some already are) but hey — the small-government folks who supported Bush are a bit testy, too. In fact, there’s a broader theory here, which is that Presidents always do the opposite of what their supporters want: Clinton reformed welfare (reluctantly) and savaged civil liberties (not so reluctantly), Bush is expanding government and will probably wind up legalizing marijuana or something if he serves two terms.

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