John Hinderaker won’t admit it, but I think he haz a sad. It was inevitable, considering that a mere two weeks ago the Power Line co-founder, who manages to store within the same cranium litigation abilities that got him named one of the 100 best lawyers in Minnesota and all the impulse control and political insight of a hyperactive four-year-old, was on an intense sugar high after W. Mitt Romney’s performance in the first presidential debate.
Hinderaker is a guy you might assume is simply too intelligent to believe the utter crap he writes, but time and time again he actually comes off as a sincere believer in the unbelievable and a zealot for the very worst of what the right wing would do to the nation if given an unfettered chance. Hinderaker believes, or would at least have you believe he believes, that Paul Krugman is a “full-time shill for the Obama administration,” that Dick Cheney “oozed” competence, and that “Barack Obama is a world-class liar.”
So his giddy appraisal of Romney’s handling of his first debate against President Obama, while essentially being a patchwork of falsehoods much like his candidate’s performance, was to be expected:
It wasn’t a TKO, it was a knockout. Mitt Romney was in control from the beginning. He was the alpha male, while Barack Obama was weak, hesitant, stuttering, often apologetic…
There was only one credible leader on the stage tonight, and it wasn’t our failed president.
Hinderaker was equally jubilant about what he believed was a world-shaking disaster of a debate performance by Barack Obama:
I don’t know how the Democrats will try to spin this one, but it just doesn’t matter. This was a huge night for the cause of freedom, one from which, one hopes, Obama can’t recover. The pitiful figure that we saw tonight was the real Obama, the loser behind the curtain who is finally revealed as an utter hoax.
For good measure, Hinderaker wrapped up the piece by characterizing Obama-supporting conservative Andrew Sullivan as “maybe the dumbest of all the liberals,” which is like describing a goat as “maybe the most four-footed of all the bipeds” or a bicycle as “maybe the least motorized of all motorcycles.”
While Hinderaker won’t dare acknowledge it, his “cause of freedom” seems to have suffered a big setback last night. Judging from his assessment of the town hall rematch between the candidates, Hinderaker was able to indulge in his typical puerile boosterism only by dropping, drinking or smoking something so mind-altering that he actually saw a debate nobody else did:
I predicted on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show that Mitt Romney would do well. He did…
Mitt Romney… continued to compete at a high level. The key factor in my view is that whenever the candidates talked about Obama’s record, Romney clobbered the president.
Hinderaker lets a smile be his umbrella as he crosses to the sunny side of the street to accentuate the positive for the pitiably desperate final sentences of his screed:
So: I call the debate a win on points for Romney, but if someone wants to argue that it was a draw, fine. A draw won’t get Obama re-elected.
It’s a shame (or a mercy) that there’s no YouTube video available for the rest of us to see what Hinderaker saw, or thinks he saw. I do know what I saw: the ineluctably phony Mitt Romney having his ass handed to him repeatedly by his opponent, greasily dodging questions on the specifics of his plans because they either have no specifics or their specifics would be abhorrent to a large majority of the electorate, pandering smarmily to the audience questioners, running out the clock on questions as a way to avoid substantive responses, and treating both the President and moderator Candy Crowley as dismissively as he probably treats his car elevator mechanic or dressage horse hot walker.