Writing about Georgie Boy’s $40 million inauguration and his overrated speech, David
Brooks noted in his Saturday column, headlined “Ideals And Reality”: “What you saw in Washington that day
is what you see in America so often — this weird intermingling of high ideals with gross
materialism, the lofty and the vulgar cheek to cheek.” Anyone who believes in Georgie Boy’s high
ideals needs a brain tune-up.
Count on Brooks to get it exactly backwards. (See Greg Palast’s fabulous “Oaf of Office.”) As he almost always does, Brooks drew
the wrong conclusion: “The people who detest America take a look at this odd conjunction and
assume the materialistic America is the real America; the ideals are a sham. … But of course
they’ve got it exactly backward. It’s the ideals that are real.”
“Because of that
speech,” Brooks wrote, “it will be harder for the U.S.
government to do what we did to Latin Americans for so many decades — support strongmen to
rule over them because they happened to be our strongmen. …
“It will be harder for future diplomats to sit on couches flattering dictators, the way we used
to flatter Hafez al-Assad of Syria decade after decade. From now on, the borders established by
any peace process will be less important than the character of the regimes in that process.”
Orlando Patterson’s op-ed piece, “The Speech Misheard Round the
World,” which appeared on the same day and on the same page as Brooks’s
rose-tinted nonsense, for the actual meaning of Georgie Boy’s inaugural address.