Sunday, March 02, 2008
I've been ambivalent about the leading candidates since the beginning of the campaign--by which I mean, not that I didn't really like either of them, but that I liked both of them (which is why I called it agnosticism, not ambivalence). Ultimately, I came down on the side of Hillary--and for quite a while, it appeared that the electorate did as well. But, clearly the tide has turned. Obama seems poised to become the annointed one. And that's fine--as I said before, I wish he'd be her running partner, and they could win in a landslide, and end up guiding the country for the next 16 years [sigh...] But, since that's not happening, I will accept reality. Here's my problem, though, and why I am describing myself now as ambivalent, rather than agnostic: it's that rock-star thing. Many are calling it the cult of personality, which I suppose is accurate enough--except that I'm not sure that Obama's personality is clear enough for it to be that. He seems rather more like a screen upon which people project their desires and hopes. That may be enough to carry us through the general election. And I certainly believe that Obama is smart enough to surround himself with the advisors he needs (hint: former Clinton admin staffers/cabinet members) to do what he himself may not be experienced enough or tough enough to do himself.
It may well be that Obama's star power is what it will take to beat McCain in the fall. I suppose that in itself is a reason why he should be the candidate. But it's tough to see the person who *should* have been the Clinton president--yes, in 1992! --being shunted aside once again, by someone who makes women swoon. Oh well. As much as I wish that people were driven by logic, not emotion, in their political decision-making, I'm enough of a realist to know that it's the way things are. So be it (I guess!)