Joe Klein tells it like it is:
Huckabee was never an entirely plausible candidate for President--could we actually ever elect a man who has his doubts about evolution? whose comments about Israel seemed to indicate a literal interpretation of the Bible and the Rapture myth?--but he always struck me as a good guy, more concerned about working-class America than most of his rivals. These comments, however, and his subsequent lie that he really meant Indonesia not Kenya, really show a demented, perverse sensibility, and they demonstrate some of the ugliness at the heart of Obama hatred.
I'm talking about the Mau Mau comment, especially.
When I was growing up, Mau Mau was shorthand for: Extremely Scary Black People. The brutality of the Mau Mau rebellion was legendary (and, who knows, perhaps even accurate). It became a term of art in the sixties: to mau-mau was to intimidate white people. (As a young reporter in Boston, I covered a would-be black militant group that called itself, with brilliant irony, De Mau Mau.) To associate Barack Obama with the Mau Mau rebellion is to feed all the worst, paranoid fears of Glenn Beck's America--and, as any sane person knows, completely ridiculous.