On the 2008 Democratic Aspirants
Okay, let's seriousuly discuss Senator Barack Obama for a moment. His prospects for the Presidency, at least as the swishy, glossy magazines construe it, are grand.
But does anyone with any actual political knowledge of this country and it's engines of Power think that a one-term Senator (with, to be sure, three terms as an Illinoian State legislator) could beat Senator John McCain -- who spent, lest we forget, 5 1/2 years under torture in a prison camp in The Nam -- in a general election during this precarious War on Terror? Obama wouldn't stand a chance in that gladiatorial fundament.
While Obama couldn't beat McCain nationally, Obama might gain the Democratic nomination; that is certainly within the realm possiility, especially with a enlarged event horizon (Sens Biden, Dodd, Vilsac, Edwards, Clinton, Gov. Richardson, et al). In a diffuse arena of competitors, Obama, by virtue of his sheer charisma, is Individuated; Obama would be the incandescent movie star on any stage of graying lions who speaketh, nuanced, with excessive Moderation. Then again, so does Obama. Does anyone really know what he stands for. He reminds me of Bill Gates' infuriatingly empty The Road Ahead Still, Obama shines on that stage, among those bland Presidential aspirants.
Even the Eternal "Prell Girl" John Edwards --presently doing so well, we hear, among likely Nevadan and Iowan caucus-goers, among Organized labor and the antiwar online Left -- seems to have succumbed to "The Bug." The Bug being the overwhelming desire to chase after the brass Ring (... des Nibelungen). If Edwards were thinking more about being useful to the country, he would establish his Manegerial bona fides (which, he so woefully lacked in the 2004 election as evidenced in the Vice Presidential debate against Cheney) Become President of a major Southern university (Duke could sure use some help); build-up a Katrina Relief Organization; something to add a dimension to his legislative experience in the Senate. Should he want to be Presient in the future -- Governor of North Carolina. By Edwards' Everlasting campaign for the Presidency, he overstays his welcome on the national radar screen, and diminishes his political capital mightily.
Senator Joe Biden -- the Senator with the spray-on hair -- from the Great State of Delaware is clearly the most cerebral of the bunch. At least on Foreign policy. The ranking Chair of th prestigous Senate Foreign Relations Committee has thought more deeply and intelligently about our Iraq policy than nearly anyone alive. The Corsair, however, has GRAVE douubts about his tripartite scheme. If Iraq were to be cleft in thrice, Turkey, which has great historical differences with the Kurds, would probably a) Go to war, and b) Turn away from The West and towards the dark Muslim Fundamentalist planetary forces.
Senator Clinton, who will clearly be battling Obama for the Center, delicately trying to not alienate her strength among African-Americans, who are a superpower within the Democratic Party. This will not be an easily navigable journey. The Corsair's problem with Clinton is virtually the same as Obama. McCain will split Hillary Clinton open like a hot peanut on the matter of National Security. Wisely, Clinton lobbied for, and got, a seat at the vaunted Senate Arms Committee. She has served diligently (and usefully) for the past 6 years or so. This negates the fact that she never served in the military (a significant drawback when one wants to audition for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue), but it means absolutely nothing against The McCain juggernaught in this time of War against Muslim Fundamentalism. John McCain was in a military prison almost as long as Hillary Clinton has been riding the learning curve at Armed Services. Mincemeat, people; McCain has the resume for the job and, no doubt, will stress that in a general campaign, playing to the backdrop of unfolding events.
Governor Bill Richardson is an incredibly interesting character that could be of tremendous political importance to the Democratic Party's future. He is immensely qualified. He is Latino. He has remarkable -- Presidential -- energy. For reasona that are still unclear to me he has just about every despot in the world on his Rolodex and, more interestingly (or disturbingly) they pick up his calls. Richardson has an almost Kissingerian respect among dictators. He has -- believe it or not -- managed to broker a nominal peace in Sudan for the Darfurians.
Richardson radiates Power (And he knows something of Energy, as he -- a Scorpio -- was Secretary of Energy). He is from New Mexico, which has been more Red State than Blue, and thus GOLD to the Democrats. He was UN Ambassador, so his foreign policy bona fides are solid; he has been a Congressman in a Republican distric; he is Presently a Governor and has served as chair of the Democratic debates in 2004. Qualified? Only Al Gore is more qualified among Democrats.
Which brings us to former Vice President Al Gore, whom, we are assured by Tipper won't get invlved. He is in this latest incarnation of Ozymandius a multimillionaire many times over from his cable network and various interlocking Boards of Directors off cool-ass companies, like Apple. Gore will, no doubt, win "Best Documentary" at the Oscars, setting himself up rather nicely for a late entrance in the 2008 battlefield, should that become an attractive option to him. And -- if it is -- the former Vice President should be a late entrant onto the sanguinary field of War. Let Hillary and Obama bloody themselves up a little, then ride the White Horse in as Conquering hero against the beseiged front runner, presumably, at that point, Clinton.
And Chris Dodd, of course, is going nowhere, he just doesn't know it yet. Oh, decist, Chris Dodd ... desist!