Obama to America: Stuck in the Middle With You

In one of the most craftily sagacious moves in Barack Obama's continuing exhibition of deftness as serious pol and spot-on presidential contender and in a true triangulation gambit (can you say "Dick Morris"?), he's tacking to the center thus reminding middle America and Harriet Heartland that "I'm a gun lovin', God-fearin', death penalty promotin' sombitch. Yee haw." Some progressives' panties are not in a wad but a Gordian knot. Take it easy. Take a deep breath. He's doing the right thing. You're watching brilliance here. Let me 'splain.

Barry 44 may bowl a measly 37 compared to Bush 43, but he's dead-on with his bull's-eye comments about guns. (Cue Eastwood in full squint: "Make my day.") Time magazine reports that Obama was quoted as saying, "I have always believed that the Second Amendment protects the right of individuals to bear arms, but I also identify with the need for crime-ravaged communities to save their children from the violence that plagues our streets through common-sense, effective safety measures. The Supreme Court has now endorsed that view." (Cue Larry the Cable Guy: "Get-R-Done.") Elitist, huh? Mr. Latte pansy, my butt. This is the new and improved Obama and some liberal psephological tyros are hiding under their bunk beds. Oh where, oh where has their Obama gone? Straight to the White House, baby. (Cue Lynyrd Skynyrd: "Sweet Home Alabama.") Obama's absolutely correct and for him to say anything else, and I mean anything else, would have been the death knell for him and his heretofore brilliant campaign. Come on, what's so unreasonable about American citizens being able to have guns at their homes to protect themselves. Pilates against a home-invasion burglar won't cut it, Tonto. (Cue theme from "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.")

And when it comes to the Supremes' decision prohibiting the death penalty for individual crimes not involving the death of the victim, say, in CHILD RAPE?!, Barry proves he's no Barry Manilow. Obama freaks some "effete elites" with this beaut: "I think that the rape of a small child, six or eight years old, is a heinous crime and if a state makes a decision that under narrow, limited, well-defined circumstances the death penalty is at least potentially applicable, that that does not violate our Constitution." Yee-ha! (Cue theme from "Death Wish IV.") Remember Dukakis -- no, not Olympia, but Michael -- when he was asked whether he would support the idea of offing the killer of HIS WIFE, repeat, HIS WIFE!, he said no. Next to being soft on wife killers, your wife's killer, being tepid on the issue of child rapists makes wearing a funny tank helmet look like, well, wearing a funny tank helmet.

Now, the irony shouldn't escape anyone here and certainly not Michelle's old man: Every person exonerated from guilt so far and rescued from an eleventh hour visit with Old Sparky was tried and convicted under "narrow, limited, well-defined circumstances." And for the most part were African-American and poor. So Barack, with all due respect, puh-leeze. Didn't you work with inner-city Chicagoans and know something about unfairness and inequality, especially in criminal sentencing? But good for you, anyway. We know, we know; it had to be said. Poor McCain (oxymoron, anyone?), whilst walking around offering $300M for a new and improved Delco, dropping C-bombs on his C, and (rumored) yelling "Who ordered veal cutlet?" at inopportune moments, doesn't know what to say. The hoary and haggard "flip-flopper" line is as ancient as Hanoi Hilton jokes, and, moreover, when America agrees with what Barack's flip-flopped to, who cares?

But Holy Greg Palast, Batman! What's happened to our Obama? Your Obama? No, America's Obama. And that's the point that many so-called "political junkies" are missing, and I've been saying this since the get-go, causing some bloggers and blogosphere commenters and denizens to dissolve and spiral into additional apoplexy. And while we're at it, don't expect B.O. to countenance gay marriages or flag burning any time soon. Expect more and bigger flag pins and a few visits to shooting ranges. No, he won't start advocating a waterboarding ride at Six Flags, but what you'll start to see is that beautiful and elegant tack to the center (OK, it's aimed right, but center-bound) that is as old and axiomatic a move as McCain's ____ (insert favorite McCain geezer joke here).

When middle America - a term, by the way, which doesn't refer solely to corn porn sentimentalities, NASCAR, PBR and "Hee Haw" - is asked about what issues concern them, next to the obvious gas prices, the economy, health care, and the like, Joe Workboots worries about gun policies and the perception of a Pelosi-powered juggernaut sweeping down Main Street confiscating hearth-protection gats and hunting rifles. The anti-gun crowd, in their post-Brady (a true Reagan Republican) heyday, wanted to classify everything as an assault weapon - the greatest tautology since, well, "assault rifle." This scared many immeasurably and gave incredible power and influence to the NRA.

President Obama (start getting used to it) may have gotten Maggie's drawers with Reverend Wright, but he's hit a two-tap tight pattern on his "courageous" views of decrying child rape and supporting the outrageous notion that millions of Americans can continue protecting their homes as they have since time immemorial.

McCain, the only candidate old enough to have actually served in a militia, continues on with what his staff swears is a lucid campaign.