In a article published by the conservative periodical, The National Review, on the 13th of March, NR editor Rich Lowry points out that for all his posturing has not altogether abandoned his predecessor’s ways.
Barack Obama has perfected a three-step maneuver
that could never even be attempted by a politician lacking his rhetorical skill or cool cynicism.
First: Denounce your presidential predecessor for a given policy, energizing your party’s base and capitalizing on his abiding unpopularity. Second: Pretend to have reversed that policy upon taking office with a symbolic act or high-profile statement. Third: Adopt a version of that same policy, knowing that it’s the only way to govern responsibly or believing that doing otherwise is too difficult. Repeat as necessary.
It’s tempting to dismiss the Lowry piece as the ravings of a right-winger determined to prove the Bush administrations policies were by and largely right and that his successor, for all his pretence of doing otherwise, has to follow them. However, as the Salon.com columnist and blogger Glenn Greenwald pointed out a few days later, what Lowry says about the Obama administration is in this case fundamentally true.
If the last eight years have taught anything, it is that no rational person would listen to or take seriously anything Dick Cheney and his Lowry-like followers have to say. That they’re motivated by everything other than the truth when criticizing Obama only bolsters that conclusion. But their ill motives and unbroken history of deceit doesn’t mean that they’re wrong in this case. And as much as one might prefer not to acknowledge it, it is becoming undeniably clear that — at least in the realm of civil liberties, executive power and core Constitutional rights — Lowry’s description of Obama’s “three-step maneuver” is basically accurate, and Cheney’s fear-mongering lament that Obama is undoing his Terrorism policies is basically false.