Since one of this blog’s missions is to Read Those Idiots So You Don’t Have To, I figured it would be worth putting the the Drudge/Daily Caller OMG WHITEY TAPE here where you could all listen without having to get Carlson-cooties on your hard drives. Turns out it took almost two hours to download the 37-minute speech (I don’t know whether the problem was my desktop or Drudge’s website, but you have been warned) and by the time I finally scored the embed code, Cole had already done a long post about the whole less-than-a-nothingburger scenario. So, here you are, and what he said.
Frankly, the obvious reason so little note was taken back in 2007 is that there is absolutely nothing in the words to distinguish this particular speech from any other Barack Obama pre-November-2008 campaign speech. Any mainstream journalist reviewing it would probably have rated it A for Anodyne. The worst complaint I can imagine is that a dedicated Rationalist might be disappointed that Obama gives, at the very least, a convincing impression of being a proud member of the Black American Christian religious tradition. He might even be accused of considering himself a Person of Faith. As one of those PoFs myself (I’m a proud animist), I don’t consider this disqualifying. As someone who pays attention to modern American politics, I know that an out and proud atheist was not going to be running as a presidential candidate for one of the two major parties in the year 2008, or 2012, or probably 2016 either.
But I do expect at least one bold, thoughtful Libertarian to announce that, given the possibility that President Obama might not be faking his religious beliefs (or at least his belief in the social power of such community-oriented religious beliefs), they will no longer be able in good conscience to vote for him. It won’t be one of the Cornerites, of course, but there’s bound to be someone on the Reason or Cato payrolls already working on what they devoutly hope will be a front-page essay.