In his New York Times column today, David Brooks admits something critics have long accused him of: “I’m a sap,” he writes, “a specific kind of sap. I’m an Obama Sap.” He had, for example, backed Obama's stimulus plan just days ago. But after hearing yesterday’s deficit reduction speech, he realized that the rest of Obama's stimulus package isn't about helping the unemployed or warding off a double-dip recession: "This is a campaign marker, not a jobs bill," full of old ideas that even a Democrat-led Congress wouldn't have passed. It wasn't a speech designed to get results, "and I’m a sap for thinking it was possible."
“To be an Obama admirer is to toggle from being uplifted to feeling used,” Brooks laments. “I always believe that Obama is on the verge of breaking out of the conventional categories,” but instead his White House “has clearly decided that in a town of intransigent Republicans and mean ideologues, it has to be mean and intransigent too.” But at least Republicans tell us what they really think. “The White House gives moderates little morsels of hope, and then rips them from our mouths.”