More on Obama’s comparison of the Gulf oil spill to the 9/11 attack

Thucydides writes (June 18):

President Obama’s comparison of the oil spill to 9/11 is revelatory of the moral confusion that prevails in the liberal mind. The failure to distinguish between a catastrophe deliberately caused and one that is the result of an accident is something that could occur only in a mind steeped in moral relativism, in which human agency plays little role. In this view, the attacks of 9/11 were not the result of human evil, but were in the nature of an overreaction caused by some sort of misunderstanding, such as failing to realize that Islam is a religion of peace, or perhaps some “legitimate grievance” was not assuaged, or feelings were exacerbated by some putative injustice. Such preposterous reasoning is what results from liberalism’s sentimental insistence on the natural goodness of man.

BP’s oil spill is something to be blamed on the entity, and not on any individual’s action. For in the liberal world view, it is never human failing, but always imperfect institutions external to the individual that are responsible when bad things happen. Accordingly, the President should go after the company, even if it destroys it and the well being of employees, shareholders, pensioners, and others who had no culpability.

In both cases, something bad has occurred. But when any notion of the individual as a responsible moral agent has been ruled out, then there is no longer any basis to distinguish between acts of malevolence and accidents.

There is also evidence of a shocking degree of narcissism in Obama’s comments. Something bad has happened that is a threat to his personal status, which is what really matters. What difference does it make to him how it was brought about?

That our president is a person who suffers from such deep moral confusion ought to worry all of us.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at June 21, 2010 03:06 PM | Send

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