Lifting the “curse on our land.”

Prof. Hart has an op-ed in today’s Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about the transcendent qualities that define Barack Obama’s campaign for president.

I haven’t seen anything like this in politics before — and I’ve written speeches for Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon and spent 20-plus years covering politics as a syndicated columnist.

Mr. Obama talks about providing medical care for everybody and so forth, but first, he says, “we” must lift the curse from “our” land.

Here, his politics touches a mythic dimension, familiar in the Grail legends. The land suffers. Nothing will grow. After undergoing many trials the knight recovers the Holy Grail and lifts the curse from the land and the crops grow again.

The curse on our land in Mr. Obama’s narrative is, of course, the Bush administration: the fear, the endless war (in Afghanistan, in Iraq, maybe in Iran), the lies, the torture, Guantanamo, the trashing of the Constitution, the cancer of incompetence.

All of this has made Americans strangers in their own land. They want their decent America back again. Mr. Obama reaches out to them, promising redemption.