He's our president too

An odd meme has broken out all over:  "Obama is our president, for conservatives as well as Democrats."  This is, in some sense, trivially true:  any conservative who has gone around claiming that Barack Obama is not, in fact, the president-elect, needs to seek psychiatric assistance immediately.  It's really true, dude; it was on CNN and everything.

But beyond the tautological, what does this demand that conservatives recognize that Obama is their president mean?  Are they supposed to root for him to succeed?  One hopes that we are all hoping he will not run the country into the ground.  But since most conservatives believe that Obama's agenda will, in fact, run the country into the ground, it would not be reasonable to demand that they actually hope he passes it.

Are conservatives supposed to suddenly like Obama? Or at least give him the benefit of the doubt? As far as I can tell, precisely none of the liberals urging this on conservatives obeyed their dicta when George Bush was supposed to be the object of their affections.

I am really struggling to figure out what sort of deeper, richer, civic life is supposed to arise out of a unanimous recognition that the man who was elected president of the country has, yes, actually been elected president of the bit we happen to live in.  Can someone who speaks Blather explain it to me?

Presented by

Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

The Blacksmith: A Short Film About Art Forged From Metal

"I'm exploiting the maximum of what you can ask a piece of metal to do."

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Riding Unicycles in a Cave

"If you fall down and break your leg, there's no way out."

Video

Carrot: A Pitch-Perfect Satire of Tech

"It's not just a vegetable. It's what a vegetable should be."

Video

An Ingenious 360-Degree Time-Lapse

Watch the world become a cartoonishly small playground

Video

The Benefits of Living Alone on a Mountain

"You really have to love solitary time by yourself."

Video

The Rise of the Cat Tattoo

How a Brooklyn tattoo artist popularized the "cattoo"

More in Business

Just In