Tuesday, January 22, 2008

And in this corner...

So, is that a foot in his mouth? Yup. Here's what he actually said:

"I don’t want to present myself as some sort of singular figure. I think part of what’s different are the times. I do think that, for example, the 1980 election was different.

"I think Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that Richard Nixon did not, and in a way that Bill Clinton did not. He put us on a fundamentally different path because the country was ready for it.

"I think they felt like with all the excesses of the 1960s and 1970s, and government had grown and grown, but there wasn’t much sense of accountability in terms of how it was operating. I think people, he just tapped into what people were already feeling -- which was we want clarity, we want optimism, we want a return to that sense of dynamism and entrepreneurship that had been missing."

Now, political candidates say some pretty stupid and self-destructive things from time to time, but this wasn't just a momentary lapse -- he went on and on and on. What was he thinking? Granted, he wasn't endorsing Reaganomics -- but what was all that crap about "dynamism" and "optimism" and "entrepreneurship?" We need policy, not feel-good pap, which is Obama's stock in trade.

In the meanwhile, it's starting to sound like the current economic crisis is moving Hillary a bit to the left -- which is to say, further from Bill. In the early years of the Clinton Administration, I always had a strong suspicion that Hillary was considerably more liberal than her husband. Maybe I was right. I hope so.

Anyway, I think it's time to push Bill off into the background. Push him far enough away, and she might be able to pick up some support from those of us planning to vote for John Edwards -- or, more important, from the delegates Edwards will be sending to the Democratic convention.

Most of America, these days, is too young to remember when conventions actually picked Presidential candidates. Wouldn't it be something if both parties wound up picking their candidates at their conventions this time around? How about some real negotiation over the party platforms, and candidates who actually run on those platforms instead of on the advice of public relations firms.

It's starting to look like politics out there. Wow!

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