When columnist Tom Wicker famously wrote, after the riots at the 1968 Democratic Convention, "These were our children in the streets, and the Chicago police beat them up," a Gallup poll recorded that 56 percent of Americans interviewed approved of the Chicago cops.
To most Americans, it was the cops who were "our children," and the country was delighted the obnoxious and over-privileged brats had gotten what they deserved.
When students marched down Wall Street in 1969 to protest the "dirty immoral war" in Vietnam, the construction workers of Pete Brennan's building trades waded in. Liberals could not understand how the working class -- the proletariat, for Pete's sake! -- so detested them.
Ever since the Social Democrats voted to a man for the Kaiser's war credits in 1914, the left has felt itself repeatedly betrayed by the economic class in which they have always invested so much hope.
This divide here is not Republicans versus Democrat, so much as it is NASCAR versus The New York Times.
When the Dubai Ports deal became public and America exploded, Times neocon columnist David Brooks was as stunned as his neoliberal colleague Tom Friedman. The "pitchfork-wielding xenophobes" were out of their cages, and a new Dark Age was upon us.
When during the Panama Canal debate Ronald Reagan declared: "We bought it. We paid for it. It's ours. And we're gonna keep it," and crowds came roaring to their feet, the elites could not comprehend it, because they do not understand what Pascal meant when he said, "The heart has reasons that the mind knows not."
Rooted people love the things of the heart: God, country, family and faith. The weapons of the mind have been given to us, they believe, to defend the things of the heart.
Knowledge follows love; it does not precede it.
Most Americans have grown to love America long before they read the Constitution, or the Federalist Papers. There are heroes in Arlington who never learned to read. A true nation is an extended family. If fathers or sons do not defend it, it is their conduct that is indefensible.
Obama may be popular today, but he will lose the country and his presidency if he lets the perception take hold that he, the personification of American sovereignty, does not react as a normal patriot.
The Obamaites may not like Sarah Palin's phraseology. But they need someone in their councils who is rooted in the Real America.