I should say “the so-called center,” because one of those most tedious — yet meticulously maintained — fictions is the claim that the establishment is, in fact, “centrist.”
If you’ve ever met these people and talked to them about how they see the world, heard them give a college commencement address, read their books, or endeavored to find out the political views of their spouses, you’d have all the evidence you need to learn that the establishment’s centrist facade is so much Potemkin poster board.
For example, remember the media obsession with the cockeyed fantasy that Obama was the next FDR? Go back and watch some of those late-2008 and early-2009 episodes of Meet the Press. The guests were so giddy about the prospect they looked like six-year-olds at a birthday party ordered to sit still while the clown got ready to make balloon animals.
But Obama is not an FDR, nor a Lincoln, nor a liberal Reagan. At this point he’s simply hoping not to be a Carter. And that’s fomented establishment despair. Tina Brown, editor of both the Daily Beast and Newsweek, recently let it slip on MSNBC (a trifecta of establishmentarian liberal media outlets!) that she thinks Obama “wasn’t ready” for the job in 2008.