It's a smug lack of respect for political hysteria of all flavors. Rahm Emanuel is to the right what Karl Rove is to the left. A mysterious boogey man of political intrigue.
In the Bush era, the dems were getting they're asses kicked. I mean, it was brutal. I think there was a good 2 or 3 year stretch in there where just every week the dems were looking like total dopes in the face of the supposedly stupid GWB. They couldn't figure it out. The media was largely spitting ink their way, the 'grass roots' movement of Cindy Sheehand and the Gold Start Families For Peacyness was making a good showing, while the left leaning blogosphere echo chamber belied the fact that there were still 51% of Americans who believe that the right guy for the job was there.
They couldn't figure it out . So out come the conspiracy nuts with stories of elite rich kid frats at Yale, Haliburton/blackwater/BIG OIL, and----Karl Rove. Karl Rove became this political Kaizer Soze, An alternate universe of a mastermind where the two ideas of 1. Bush is stupid and 2. We're still getting our asses kicked - could both peacefully co-exist. It helped make the world make sense for these ass clowns who were largely too hyped up on their own koolaid to realize that Bush was indeed not totally brain dead and that the problem really had nothing to do with evil manipulation:
It had to do with the fact that the dems were a total disaster.
Now on the right, we're starting to see the same things happening. GOP has been getting their asses kicked to the point where they're actually digging up the Gipper's body and helping him spin. The Obama as a 'stupid head" meme hasn't started yet, but the Rahm as some sort of Bismarkian manipulator of politics meme has.
His colorful character will only make it more entertaining for people like me.