Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Time is relative

Louisiana Governor Booby Bobby Jindal, interviewed on NBC's Today show this morning, told Matt Lauer that President Obama is "our most liberal president in modern times."

Really?  So for Jindal, presumably, "modern times" includes only this millennium?  We have to write off Bill Clinton, who was far more liberal than Obama?  What about Jimmy Carter?  What about Franklin Roosevelt, John Kennedy, and Lyndon Johnson? Hell, on some if not most measures, Republican President Dwight Eisenhower was more liberal than Obama.  All these presidents except FDR served after the end of World War II.

I was born during World War II.  Does this mean that I was born in pre-modern times, but I now live in modern times?

Jindal really is spectacularly stupid.

3 comments:

  1. It's all about labeling. If someone is labeled as "liberal" or its companion "socialist," then automatically certain people will dislike that person. It's as easy that. You don't have to provide evidence or an explanation of what you mean by "liberal." Nor do you need to define "modern" because most people don't ask those kinds of questions.

    Every semester I talk with my students about the definition of "critical thinking," and you've just given me an excellent example to use for this.

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  2. I think a distinction should be made between Liberal and liberal. The capital-L variant holds its platform on the modern Democratic party platform (which is not liberal at all), and the lowercase-l variant is what is says on the tin: politically liberal. Obama is by no means any more liberal than Eisenhower was, but he is far more Liberal than Eisenhower.

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  3. Very good article. Congratulations.

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Comments and feedback are welcome, as long as they conform to normal standards of civility and decency. I will delete comments that do not meet these standards.