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Sunday, August 03, 2008
Refelections On Being Number One
I am pretty impressed with myself that as we get closer to our election here in the US, I seem to be less and less interested in writing about it. I still seem to be talking about it with others a great deal, which, I hope, shows a high level of interest by the citizenry.
But for some reason, I just don't feel like writing.
It's not as if I don't get animated about the campaigns. McCain in particular has really just been remarkably inept, usually to the point of ridiculous. Honestly, you spend months goading Obama about how he hasn't been to Iraq or Afghanistan, and then when he goes, meets foreign leaders (who have the temerity to be impressed with the man), and spends time with the troops, including a helicopter flight with General David Petraeus, you counter this self-inflicted wound by being photographed in a golf cart with President Bush's dad, and hanging out in the cheese aisle of the Foodway?
It's pretty spectacular campaigning, but at least he's appealing to his base, septuagenarians who aren't lactose intolerant, and former presidents of the United States who are not legally dead.
Oh, wait, I forgot some other hot stops.
The Fudge Haus. Laugh if you want, but they are also under the same roof as The Sausage Haus, and it was smart of McCain to remind voters of his strong foreign policy experience. Not sure why he picked a German theme, but hey, experience is experience, even if these restaurants are in Ohio. I wonder why his campaign picked the German Village in Columbus, Ohio, maybe...
OK, so the McCain campaign decided to counter an impressive Obama moment in Berlin. I'm honestly not sure how you would go about that, but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't do anything that reminded the American people that my opponent was beating my ass like a drum.
Frank Rich, who does exceptionally for the New York Times what I do here very poorly, observed that "many American children have never before seen huge crowds turn out abroad to wave American flags instead of burn them."
I really believe there is value in that for this country and its citizens.
I'm the last person to give a damn about the opinion of others. When Europe sat on its ass for centuries while the Balkans caught fire periodically, the US led efforts to try and settle a problem that Europeans should have solved for themselves. We were right to do that, and I'm sure it rubbed some people the wrong way. When America does what's right, the rest of the world can get on board, or get left behind.
When America fucks up collossally, people turn on us. As they should. And our failures would make the world laugh mightily if we weren't so big that we end up sucking other countries down the drain with us. If I could think of any examples, I'd mention them.
This country needs a leader to inspire Americans, and also the rest of the world. You can't make everyone happy, and you shouldn't even try, but when you're stuck in a hole, you should stop digging.
I'm not saying that John McCain is a shovel, but he sure seems to be getting most of his political advise from a bunch of tools.
posted at 7:29 PM
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