Our Handbasket is Getting mmmmm-Toasty
As most of the bourgeois American population has already heard… we are electing a new President this year. For some of you, this is grand news because the “Son of a Bush” is leaving office in January ’09. For those of us with a brain, January 10th of 2009 is going to be a sad day. For those of us with an eye on the future, the field of candidates that houses our next president isn’t looking like it’s going to be any kind of vast improvement.
It wasn’t that long ago that there was no way in Perdition that John McCain would be the Republican nominee for President. I have a firm belief that McCain won the nomination because there was a percieved lack of serious alternatives. It was either McCain or another governor from Arkansas… and we all know how that turned out last time… **ahem-koff-koff-CLINTON!**. Personally, I think the GOP base would have been much happier with Huckabee… at least the mostly religious voter-base would have been. However, McCain seems to be incredibly lucky with how this cycle has shaken out. Why? Well, while McCain is trumpeting his lifetime conservative rating of 80/100, it doesn’t take a savant to remember that the rating for his current term in the Senate is somewhere around 58/100. However, there is a powerful counter-balance to this little “Inconvenient Truth” (sorry Al, its just too usable…). Namely? The DNC has managed to nominate someone that we like less than McCain… Barack Obama.
To my recollection, this is the only time I have heard Rush Limbaugh not criticize McCain for his pseudo-liberal weirdness (check out the August issue of the Limbaugh letter to see it for yourself)… and it’s all thanks to the fact that if we don’t push McCain into office, we end up with Obama. A slightly twisted and jaded part of me almost wishes that Obama would get elected so that we could let the “First minority president” thing rest once and for all… however the sane, rational, patriotic, highly educated part of me realizes that I have had angel food cake with more substance than Obama’s rhetoric. In fact, the only thing more maddening than the lack of substance in his speeches is the absolute brilliance of the political strategy.
If you say nothing relevant to an issue, you will never stick your foot in your mouth because of it. Everybody can dig hyperexistential ideals like “hope”, “change”, and “yes we can!” Not everybody can dig “I hate America!” Not everyone will respect you if you say something like, ” we should live at the permission of foreign nations!” However, I find it appropriate to quote the man who spent more time in the Presidential office than any other… Franklin D. Roosevelt.
You can’t feed people on mere hope. You can only make them feel better about starving.
Now, Roosevelt was using this line to defend his installment of Social Security and welfare at one of the worst economic sags in our history. However, it is quite relevent to the current discussion. As I said earlier, if you say nothing of consequence, you won’t stick your foot in your mouth. The man championing change and hope has refused to drill for more oil in the United States… milking America’s pocketbooks dry in the process, and refusing to lower the price of oil as a consequence. To be fair, the man has advocated change… like his stance on the troop surge earlier this year. One little report comes out saying that the Iraqis are making “satisfactory progress” on 16 of 18 federal benchmarks, and suddenly the troop surge might have been the right thing to do… oops. In fact, in his stated political goals, just about the only thing that hasn’t changed is that his political goals are always changing. Hard to believe? Not really.
It’s very telling right now that as we near the November elections, McCain is trying to sound like a real Repubican and Obama is trying to make himself not sound like a liberal kook. If both candidates are trying to pander to the right, doesn’t that mean the right is… right? Bad pun, I know… but it seems there really is a reason it’s called the “right” wing. (worse pun… my sincerest apologies)