Dear Andrew

The only question is why are you surprised?

It’s not as if there was a lack of voices during the Presidential campaign saying stuff like “hey, we really don’t know who this Obama fellow is. He’s kind of an empty vessel and we seem to be projecting onto him what we like best. Anyone else concerned about that?” But unfortunately, whenever some of us brought this more-than-disconcerting point to light, people like you would either try to shout us down or–when you were feeling in a subtle mood–try to change the subject to discuss the identity of Trig Palin’s birth mother.

I suppose I should feel bad for you now that your chosen Healer of All Psychic Wounds has decided to reveal just how little he thinks of “advancing gay equality.” And in truth, I do. I have no problem with same-sex monogamous marriage. Nor do I have a problem with gays and lesbians serving in the military. Rick Warren and I find ourselves on opposite ends when it comes to these issues.

But I’m afraid you set yourself up to be disappointed. You were functionally uncritical in your praise of Obama. Oh sure, there were the momentary lapses but the words “neocon,” “Palin,” “Trig” and “patience and steel” were always more than enough to cause you to lapse back into your common state of intellectual submission before The One. For all of your pretensions about being a fearless, relentless journalist, you were played for a patsy by Team Obama. And you were happy to act out your part with all of the dramatic vigor at your command.

There are plenty of other people who watched and commented on this election who didn’t allow themselves to be taken for a ride the way you did. That the President-elect is now going back on the promises, winks and nods that he issued throughout the campaign doesn’t surprise them. It may disappoint at times, but it doesn’t surprise them.

It surprises you. And that’s because when it came to covering Barack Obama, you abandoned all pretense of critical thinking. Maybe you should have tried to spend more time figuring out what this blank slate President-elect really is like instead of having spent so much time trying to figure out the mystery of Trig Palin’s birth.

If you did, you might have been able to call yourself a journalist. Now? Well . . . not so much.