Tag Archives: american exceptionalism

Exceptional Exceptionalism


Putin wrote an op-ed in the NYT last week mocking Obama and the idea of American Exceptionalism. He scored bonus points because everyone knows Obama himself is not so wild about the idea. He thinks America is exceptional in the same way Britain and Greece are exceptional. Which is to say, not very. But that didn’t stop him last week from asking Americans to support an attack on Syrian president Assad – with something more than a pinprick, yet unbelievably small – because we are exceptional.

The abuse continued this week when a Russian minister claimed the Navy Ship Yard shooting was an example of American Exceptionalism.

Exceptional and Weird

Maureen Dowd had a few thoughts of her own about the president concerning the partisan speech he delivered while the shooting was still going on:

“The man who connected so electrically and facilely in 2008, causing Americans to overlook his thin résumé, cannot seem to connect anymore… Top Democrats who used to consider Obama one cool cat now muse that he’s “one weird cat,” as one big shot put it.”

When the going gets tough the weird get going.

We Are Not Worthy

Obama thinks you’re soft and lazy. Once again you have let him down. Or, as Rich Lowry puts it, “The president’s “lazy” comment is one of a series of remarks carrying an undercurrent of disapproval of the country he is so luckless to govern.”

Back in September Shelby Steele looked at the bigger picture by examining Obama’s distaste for American exceptionalism. Steele defines exceptionalism as the result of a “difficult rigor” based on individual initiative and responsibility.

“Anti-exceptionalism has clearly shaped his “leading from behind” profile abroad—an offer of self-effacement to offset the presumed American evil of swaggering cowboyism”

“At home the values that made us exceptional have been smeared with derision.”

“As a president, Barack Obama has been a force for mediocrity. He has banked more on the hopeless interventions of government than on the exceptionalism of the people. His greatest weakness as a president is a limp confidence in his countrymen. He is afraid to ask difficult things of them.”

In other words he’s just not that into you.