Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sunday Politics

I've been avoiding David "Schoolboy" Brooks for a long time, but embarrassed myself by finally biting on his listing as a top-10 most forwarded on the NYT webpage for the past few days. The piece is an "Answer Man" dialog that makes Obama an upmarket "experience" candidate and Hillary a working-class retail gal. Schoolboy improves his grades by getting a B+ this time. College vs. non-college is not a dumb analytic distinction.

You can also see the New anti-Hillary Strategy taking form on the Right. Rush and the rest will trot out the Hillary-hating themes, while Thoughtful Conservatives led in the media by Schoolboy and Bill Kristol will paint Hillary as old-school New Deal - actually a pretty nice lady, but outdated and misguided. This will trick her into moving right, and she will lose exactly the working-class votes she needs to win in November.

The overall Right doesn't actually see working America as defunct. They see the white working-class as the key to their own power, unions as their great political enemy, and their culture war (click Schoolboy label) against colleges and its middle-class grads as one of their two or three essential strategies.

Fr Frank's sermon does a good job of analyzing the "thick deck of race cards" Hillary is playing against Obama.
In October, seven months after the two candidates’ dueling church perorations in Selma, USA Today found Hillary Clinton leading Mr. Obama among African-American Democrats by a margin of 62 percent to 34 percent. But once black voters met Mr. Obama and started to gravitate toward him, Bill Clinton and the campaign’s other surrogates stopped caring about what African-Americans thought. In an effort to scare off white voters, Mr. Obama was ghettoized as a cocaine user (by the chief Clinton strategist, Mark Penn, among others), “the black candidate” (as Clinton strategists told the Associated Press) and Jesse Jackson redux (by Mr. Clinton himself).

The result? Black America has largely deserted the Clintons. In her California primary victory, Mrs. Clinton drew only 19 percent of the black vote.
Can you say "President McCain"?

My friend Susan's son Arnault has grown up in Paris with dual US-French citizenship, and asked me at dinner the other night whether the Clintons weren't good people whom liberals etc. should support. I gave him a short lecture on the Clinton Republocrat completion of the Reagan Revolution (wall street economy, end of welfare as we know it, acceptance of the evil of New Deal social democracy that, I added, is our only bulwark against barbarism and the "planet of slums) - poor kid. But I will send him this link on Bill Clinton in action. His deep driver was always to attract, be with, be liked by, be supported by the rich, and then become one of them.

This whole generation of post-60s politicians offers a sellout idealism that just makes me miss FDR - or CLR.

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