Both are dangerous ideologues and masters of demagoguery
Obama and Morsi are not individuals, they are the representatives of political movements that have spent the better part of a century clambering to power. Their brushes with the law have made them cunning and their rise to power after so long have fed their sense of historical destiny. To them these are more than momentary political triumphs, but the culmination of history. They do not see ballot boxes, but the inevitable march of progress and prophecy that must be fulfilled by any means necessary.
Obama and Morsi: Separated at Birth
In Cairo, Morsi scribbles his decrees and in Washington DC, Obama scribbles his. There is an ocean between the two men, but there is a good deal that they have in common. Both are ideologues who piggybacked on public outrage over the national impact of international economic declines to climb to power and pursue their true agendas.
Without worries about the price of bread, the odds are good that Mubarak would be sitting in his old place and Morsi would be looking over the latest economic reports from the Brotherhood’s business networks and front groups. And without a sharp decline in American living standards, Mubarak would be receiving phone calls from President McCain urging him to democratize Egypt, while Obama would be rallying the troops at the latest SEIU event for taking back Congress.
Times of crisis are political hunting grounds for extremist groups whose ideologies would otherwise be unpalatable. Angry people are more willing to accept the previously unacceptable to shake up the system and punish those that they blame for their economic situation. They are in the long run, only punishing themselves, but the long run rarely wins elections. The short run however is the all-time ballot box winner.
But the problem with running on the old Bolshy platform of “Land, Bread and Peace” is that the people eventually expect you to deliver at least two of three. And ideologues are not interested in empowering people. They will hand out subsidized freebies to their supporters to win elections, but they won’t empower them economically and peace is never on the table with folks who believe utopia is just a hundred years of war away.