Today's lead was a simple one: "Despite being trounced in the Oregon primary, Hillary Clinton won't throw in the towel yet." Why? Who cares? It's embarrassing. For EVERYONE. And it really misses the point. This election isn't about who can win, or even who deserves to to be the nominee. It's about turning around eight years of disastrous policy fiascos that have even die-hard, died-in-the-wool multi-generation Republicans shaking their heads in shame and wondering what has become of the Grand Old Party they once new and loved. It's going to take leadership, but it's also going to take teamwork, and the best efforts and contributions of everyone who loves this country and what it stands for to put it right again.
Which is why I'm so mystified by Mrs. Clinton. Does she honestly believe that the ONLY position she is qualified to play in this next administration is QB 1? I've got news you Ma'am, and I"m sorry to have to be the one to share it. But most coaches I know only have one position on their team for a "team player" with THAT kind of attitude. It's warming the splinters at the far end of the bench....
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Friday, May 02, 2008
I suppose one of the great advantages of being hospitalized for over a month is that it creates the perfect excuse for disengaging from the 24/7 news cycle. I decided a long time ago that I wasn't going to get too excited about the primary season, but would simply wait until November to vote for whoever the Democrats happened to nominate. With so many excellent candidates available, and the Republicans stuck recycling retreads, I felt like I could have been happy with just about any of the Democratic choices, although I still feel that the strongest ticket the Democrats might have nominated this year would have been Gore/Edwards.
But between the historic candidacies of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, 2008 seemed destined to produce something very different. In fact, just before I went into the hospital I found myself hoping for a dream ticket of Obama/Clinton, which would combine the exciting, youthful charismatic vision of the first African American President with the seasoned experience of the former First Lady and Junior Senator from New York. All it would have taken is for Hillary to recognize that the mood of the nation was moving in a different direction, and to set aside her own personal ambitions for the sake of the country....
But a funny thing happened on the way to the Convention. And this sideshow over Jeremiah Wright typifies everything that is wrong with our electoral process in general, and with the Democratic party in particular.
But first just a simple observation. If agreeing with everything that the preacher has to say is a requirement for remaining a member of a particular church, most of us would be preaching to pretty sparse congregations. The prophetic voice is not the voice of reason and moderation; it is a voice which speaks out loudly for those who are not able to speak out for themselves, and which attempts to speak THAT truth to power. Of course the preacher should be outrageous. Outrage is our stock in trade; if you aren't outraged, you aren't paying attention.
Politics, on the other hand, are about the art of the possible, and creating coalitions of compromise that can move the country forward toward the 80% that we can all agree on. In politics, idealism must always be tempered by realism, and the willingness to settle for the partial good. But when "electability" begins to trump vision and purpose, and the conversation is all about the horse race rather than the policies, and candidates are pilloried for daring to express a controversial idea out loud....well, it's outrageous in a different way. A much more dangerous way.
So, cross my fingers and support Barack, or hold my nose and vote for Hillary? Or pray that the superdelegates come to their senses, and ask Al Gore and John Edwards to pick up the mantle of leadership, and rescue their party from the politics of personal destruction....
Where are those pain pills when I need them?