Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Dean and the Demos

It looks like Howard Dean is both out of money and serious ideas. He has pulled his ads in the states between South Carolina and Arizona, and is going to "make a stand" in Michigan. Judging by the debate last night, in which his performance was extremely boring, and the chaos in his campaign team, as well as his lack of money (where did all that loot go to?), this guy’s finished. His only chance is to show how John Kerry has contradicted himself his whole career, that he is a vapid political opportunist, that he’ll put people to sleep on the campaign trail, that Bush will roll over him in the debates, etc., but Dean didn’t take advantage of the opportunity to do that last night and I don’t think he will be able to in the future. A pathetic conclusion to a very interesting campaign, interesting that is until the votes started coming in. Maybe it was all just media hype. Dean’s finished. I had thought, by the way, that I had seen boring debates before. I was wrong. Last night’s was worse than any and all the others combined. Never mind that Tom Brokaw said more than once "nation of Islam" when he meant to say Islamic nations (only Al Sharpton noticed this), or that Wesley Clark is dull as a well hammered nail. Shameful performance by one and all. David Limbaugh might be right, Kerry will be the nominee by default.

Discussions - 2 Comments

Holy smokes, Dean fell faster than France in WWII. I can’t think of a faster fall in politics in the last 20 years. Dean crashed in a week and a half. Where did all that cash go?

Dean was finished after his astonishingly poor showing in Iowa,
where he was somewhat the victim of bad timing. Kerry wins barely there by reinventing himself again as a noble Veteran, with the somewhat mysterious appearance of that attractive and eloquent average guy he pulled out of the river. In retrospect Edwards had to win in Iowa (which he almost did) to have a chance. Naturally Kerry does well in New Hampshire after achieving sainthood in the Boston Globe. Marc Landy, a very astute political science,
says he now has grudging respect for Kerry--what he mistook for being slow witted and boring turns out to great-souled gravitas in the imaginations of the people. But great-souled men ordinarily don’t resort to botox.
The interesting thing about the recent debate was less the sputtering Dean than the implicit concession of Edwards. He made no effort to blow Kerry away--despite the fact that the man from North Carolina is much more glib and intelligent. Edwards opened his campaign for vice president. The trial lawyer took an out-of-court settlement rather than embracing the high risk strategy of going for the jury verdict. Very prudent from his point of view, bad for his party. Edwards would quickly have been the favorite against Bush; Kerry, thank God, won’t wear well at all.

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