Ouch!!! That one’s pretty damn harsh, I think. Unless I am completely dim, the point involves personal ambition vs. good of the party, and the country. It’s true that Hillary’s current stubbornness is bad for the party at this point. But I would (and did) make the same point about Obama a year ago: Any knucklehead could see that rather than enter the race, which was sure to split the party, he should have brokered an early commitment as VP candidate. He would then then have cruised to an easy victory with Hillary, gained two terms in the White House to compensate for his relative inexperience, and then taken his own two terms to build on Hillary’s progress. Would have been better off for the country–who knows what a four-term golden age like that might have brought.
Mark my words: a lot of the desperate and frustrated mistakes that Hillary has made in the campaign (the pandering, hte gas tax holiday, the glowing references McCain’s experience, the Rove-level thing with Rev Wright, etc.), which I find as offensive as anyone, would never have happened if Obama had chosen this rather obvious alternative path. But does that mean we should portray Obama is some kind of mad egomaniac? I hope not. If Hillary qualifies for this bunker treatment, then I’d think he does as well, at least as much. So maybe best to avoid this level of hyperbole.
I had lunch with my accountant, and she revealed that she was a Hillary supporter. I revealed myself an Obamamaniac, and she irritatedly suggested that Obama had no plan for change, just ‘change’ as an empty word.
I didn’t want to offend her, so I diplomized and circled warily — we found common ground eventually, didn’t take too long. It was a good lesson in Hillaryism — ‘Obama’s a bumpkin/the GOP will chew him up/Hillary has the better health plan/How Dare He?’
I finally asked her what would be the first thing she’d personally do if elected President. Her answer — all Congresspeople, Senators, Presidents, and Supreme Court Judges are paid ten bucks an hour, and they have to buy their own health insurance. That was just her first step.
Hey, I didn’t compose the damn thing- just embedded the video. I thought it might stir up a little controversy- ’tis true.
…he should have brokered an early commitment as VP candidate. He would then then have cruised to an easy victory with Hillary, gained two terms in the White House to compensate for his relative inexperience, and then taken his own two terms to build on Hillary’s progress
Perhaps it’s egomaniacal, but my take is that Obama genuinely didn’t want to be a part of more of the same establishment politics, which he could see another Clinton admin resulting in. Took a lot of balls to take on the Clinton machine at this stage of his career, but he’s shown he had a plan to prevail. I think it will say a lot about O’s core philosophy whether he can find a way to withstand her desperate drive to get on the ticket as veep.
Hmmm, ah, yes. Thank you Barbie or Officer Barbrady or whatever your name is, for that interesting and thoughtful interlude . . .
Well anyhow, where were we?
Oh yes: Politics, especially in this day and age and place, is the art of the possible, and what will work is preferable to what is more likely to fail. The best is the enemy of the good, after all, and anyhting that allows that despicable lying swine McCain to sneak into the white House is a terrible mistake for the Dems. So I wish all candidates had adopted this as their primary consideration–call it Strategic Thinking.
By the way, Obama can’t very well object to being a part of “the same establishment politics.” Of course he is and must be part of the SEP; that’s how he got to where he is, and that is what he is doing too often these days in order to out-pander Hillary. The bowling thing? Qaffing Budwiser? Did you hear his comments from yesterday in Boca Raton, about his unshakeable support for Israel? Ugh. His health care program is more conservative that hers–nothing radical there. And there really is little in his specific policy proposals that suggests he is anywhere outside establishment politics. Which is not surprising–how could he be? Why should we expect that? And if he were, what would be the best way to get into the white house: by tearing the party in half and alientating whack-o voters to jump to McCain?
But back to the question: These candidates are basically very similar, and the party should Do What Works to get its candidates elected. Before Obama’s challenge to Hillary was too serious, McCain was (properly) regarded as a lame joke of a candidate. Now, he is, amazingly enought, seriously considered to have a shot at beating the Democrats. The reason has nothing to do with anything McCain has done, but with the weakening of the Dems’ message, which is a direct result of Obama’s challenge.
Again: This pragmatic approach might be offensive if there were a vast difference between the Dem candidates, some kind of McGovern vs. LBJ thing. Yes, Obama would make a better candidate than Hillary. But how big is the difference really, and what is his hurry? Dems must focus on WHAT WORKS, and if there is anything that scares the US public, it’s too sudden change. A little strategic (i.e long-term) thinking would be in order. Plus, there is the simple tactical consideration of forfeiting the election to the loathesome reptile McCain because of this excessive personal egoism.
Damn it all, it’s too late to turn back a year–a lot of damage has already been done by this awful, abrasive, abusive intra-party struggle. What’s left now is to choose between the two: who will make a stronger candidate against McCain, and it’s clearly Obama. But as a result of the primary battle, both are now weaker than they would have been, and it seems fair to look back just a little and consider what would have been a more productive and successful strategic approach by the Dems: and that seems to be the united ticket I mentioned earlier.
Anyhow, my point about the Hitler clip (which obviously was written, produced and acted by Max in his secure underground recording studio–I recognize you behind that mustache! And BTW, who has been reading Nietzsche recently? Coincidence? I think not!), is that if you are going to criticize Hillary for wanting to be president, then surely you must agree that the same critique to Obama (or, if any of our worthy contributors prefer, “Da Niggah”)–so what’s the point? Yes they all want to be President–that’s why they are running.
But seriously, though their policy differences are very minor, their management style is very different, as is their organizational approach. Obama is very much an inspire the masses kind of guy and Clinton is a supreme bureaucrat. I question the idea that the net effect of the drawn out primary battle has been negative, as it’s engaged an unparalleled number of democratic voters. The head to head poll matchups with McCain could also be quite misleading because of the passions of the supporters of both Dem candidates not desiring to speak highly of the momentarily hated opponent to any pollster. Once there is a nominee the contrasts between the rep and the dem will be much more apparent and there will be very few defectors among the dems (or the solid repubs). What might make all the difference will be the much greater number of dems than reps to get involved early (or at least pay a little attention) and eventually even vote.
I hope your are right. Of course BO is more inspiring, by a country mile. But being a supreme bureaucrat is not the same as being Hitler in his bunker–that’s my only point here.
Yes BO has mobilized a lot of new voters, no question. But he has also alientated a lot of Hillary voters, who I think he would have easily won if his first term were 2016. I hear more often than I would like about/from people who say they would vote this time for Hillary but would vote for McCain before BO. Insane as that sounds, and is. Fuck-all knows what the voting public will do anymore, so we’ll have to wait and see; but I think if the public saw him in office as VP for a couple terms, this madly irrational syndrome would never arise.