He is smart and he is interesting and he is well-read. He has a compelling personal story.

But he does not know Anita Dunn from Adam. And his diatribe the other night was not just over the top — it was scary. He took a speech Anita was giving telling people to choose their own paths, to become individuals who questioned, who sought answers, who found their “own Calcuttas” (yes, she quoted Mother Theresa).

Come on, Glenn, you knew exactly what she meant when she quoted Mao — and you knew what Karl Rove meant when he wrote last year that President Bush suggested he read Mao. And you know what political philosophers or political operatives mean when they suggested that Machiavelli has something to say or Mussolini made the trains run on time or Genghis Kahn established a system of education.

Because someone quotes Mao, as noted Republican Lee Atwater and many others have, does not mean they approved of who he was as a leader. Because you find something in their writings or philosophy that you see as a lesson does not mean that you approve of their actions. Barry Goldwater, the father of modern conservatism and a virulent anti-communist —— and his aides — talked about adopting Mao’s tactics (see the book by Stephen Shadegg). As did Newt Gingrich and Ralph Reed.

So, Glenn, get off your high horse, forget about the White House and your red phone (give me the number and I will call it, I guarantee you). Don’t play demagogue and don’t engage in your own “red-baiting.” It is demeaning and it is uncivil and it is a cheap shot.

It doesn’t become you, it doesn’t add to the discourse, it doesn’t move America forward.

There are not communists or socialists or fascists in the White House. Really, Glenn, there aren’t even radicals there, just human beings trying to do their jobs. Policies are fair game; guilt by character assassinations is not.