lenn Beck, historically a scathing critic of the Obama administration, shocked liberals last week when he... uh, agreed with them, writes Meghan Daum in the L.A. Times. The left's "cardinal antagonist" defended the reading of Miranda rights to Times Square bombing suspect Faizal Shahzad, even as Republicans like Senator John McCain attacked the decision. "We don't shred the Constitution when it's popular," said Beck. "We do the right thing." Leading commentators on the left lined up to praise Beck for saying something they agreed with, but perhaps we should take his "uncharacteristically dovish" position with a pinch of salt, writes Daum:
"Amusing as it has been, all of this has also somehow managed to be almost poignant rather than actually poignant — or even all that meaningful. That's because praising Beck seems less about giving credit where it's due than about seizing the rare opportunity to disprove certain laws of physics — like the one that says [liberals] and Beck will never share even a tiny fraction of ideological space...
"It doesn't rise above culture war cliches; it proves one of the biggest, that most media conservatives are too unsophisticated to grasp their own incompetence and too many media liberals' bleeding-heart inclinations extend to grading on a curve....
"Beck's words were deemed commendable not because they were brave or revelatory but mostly because they were a departure from a norm; they represented, to many liberals, a moment of uncustomary unterribleness."
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