Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Same old same old

So we're back to this again.

Well, okay.

I don't really see tonight's results as a reversal of fortune for Obama -- the "delegate math" just doesn't add up -- but I do have a bad feeling about where things are going.

Every once in a while, when I take our lab-mastiff, Louis, to the park, there is a small dog or two who just won't leave him the fuck alone, what with the yipping and the nipping and the circling, until he just has to break through his usually docile doggy demeanor and come back with a convincingly vicious growl.

That, I believe, is what's going on here: go negative until you provoke a response. And there are many ways Obama can win this, but he can't win a negative fight against the Clintons (at least I don't think he can). That sort of thing is their bread and butter.

That sort of thing -- this sort of thing -- was also, I had hoped, a relic of the political past, the infamous "dustbin of history." Ha! Stupid me.

And where will this brave new return to business-as-usual lead us? Do we even care? Maybe not. But we should. In one of the stronger moments (for me) in what was an otherwise lackluster "concession" speech in San Antonio last night, Obama put it this way:

The world is watching what we do here. What will we they see? What will we tell them? What will we show them?

Same as it ever was?


godoggo said...

Do you know happen to know the little dog's breed? I'm guessing bullshitz.

Andrew Durkin... said...

Yeah, that sounds about right!

godoggo said...

Hey, check out Marc Cooper's piece about this in the L.A. Weekly. It took a minute for it to really hit me what was going on, but you can now consider me officially pissed. Also, here's Cooper's blog.

Andrew Durkin... said...

Wow. That piece is devastating, and spot-on in its assessment. Thanks...

godoggo said...

On the other hand, Cooper's one of those guys who makes a career out of attacking Dems ostensibly from the left, and none of the other bloggers I read seem to think that this is actually a huge problem in practical terms.

Andrew Durkin... said...

none of the other bloggers I read seem to think that this is actually a huge problem in practical terms.

Well, if by "this" you mean the HRC campaign strategies we've been seeing, this is not going to prevent a candidate from eventually emerging (by hook or by crook), that's true. And the conventional wisdom is that it's all just a part of the normal rough-and-tumble of politics.

I guess I'm looking for a higher standard (after years of thinking it was impossible). The real issue for me is watching Democrats become the thing they hate. Comparing your opponent to Karl Rove and then going straight for the fear-mongering (not to mention the other tactics that have been on display) -- that way lies madness. For a smart person like HRC, I can't see how it wouldn't be psychically destructive on a very deep level. And if Obama gives in to the temptation to retaliate, then we're back to square one, as far as I'm concerned.

I'm not trying to paint this as some kind of morality play, but... it just seems like the stakes are too high for this shit, especially in the wake of a George Bush. We've already had enough mad leadership over the last eight years to last a lifetime -- let's give the reasonable people a chance, eh?

godoggo said...

No, I meant that it's unlikely that HRC is going to pull a win out of this, or that it will help McCain against Obama.

But of course her talking up McCain is appalling.

Andrew Durkin... said...

Whoops, sorry I jumped the gun. I misunderstood your point.

What can I say: this whole thing has me on edge!

godoggo said...

Well that was probably the most logical interpretation of my comment. Just didn't happen to be what I meant (I thought I'd posted this comment before, but I guess not).

Anyways, for the record, the "other bloggers" I was thinking of were mainly Matt Yglesias and Kevin Drum.