The government needs to start respecting us

Jim Geraghty at National Review takes note of an ad for Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA)Heritage ActionScorecardSen. Mary Landrieu2%Senate Democrat AverageSee Full Scorecard2%‘s runoff, in which Republicans are charged with showing Barack Obama “so much disrespect,” and sees a bigger lame-duck Democrat campaign theme struggling to crack out of its eggshell:

Watch for this maneuver more in the coming months. Barack Obama has lost the Democratic control of the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. Democrats in both chambers are less likely to go along with Obama after these awful midterms. He’s lost the public’s trust. The media is more critical than it used to be (if not as critical as conservatives wish). Many of his policies are flopping. Attention is shifting to Hillary. Accusing opponents of racism, greed, and xenophobia flopped as a tactic in the midterm elections.

What does he have left? The presidency.

Expect to see a lot more charges that “Republicans aren’t showing respect for the presidency” in these final years. The question is whether anyone will notice that the allegedly disrespected president shows no respect for the Constitutionally-mandated role of Congress.

So… was Mary Landrieu “dissing” Obama when she was denouncing him all over Louisiana during her re-election campaign? How about all of the other Democrats who either vowed to fight Obama like wildcats when they reached Washington, or went to comical lengths to avoid being seen with the toxic President?

Geraghty notes that this interpretation of “respect” essentially redefines it as “agreement.” Since we’re not just talking about applauding Obama during academic discussions, I would go further and say it redefines respect as obedience. There is a strong tendency among the increasingly illiberal Left to interpret disagreement with government as insulting, disrespectful, or even seditious, at least when they’re running it. Not long ago, Democrats were comparing the Tea Party to traitors and terrorists, even though they were merely trying to use the lawful instruments of representative government to express their policy preferences.

This is a natural consequence of the Left’s appetite for unified and unchallenged power, which is the only way to impose what they judge to be desirable social “improvements” on an unwilling populace. Their disgust with the mechanisms of representative government manifests itself through snarling about “gridlock,” as if any outcome that doesn’t involve government doing something …read more    

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