Saturday, September 13, 2008

hillary, part deux

I used to post a lot of links to other blogs and news stories, interspersing commentary. After my hiatus, I wrote just commentary. I prefer the latter.

So in an abject contradiction to the above, here’s a couple of links …

So it seems that The Dalibama talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk. His female staffers are paid less than his male staffers – quite contrary to his “equal pay for equal work” mantra. McCain? No, not equal pay on his side either – his female staffers are paid more than their male counterparts. Go figure.

I’m glad someone did a detailed piece on stock market and GDP performance under different party leads. Seems to set aside the “figures don’t lie, but liars figure” mantra. From the post: By the way, as fond as Democrats are of saying how poorly stocks have performed under George W. Bush, here's a sobering fact: Stocks averaged 14.1% return in those Bush years when Republicans controlled Congress -- and when Democrats got in there and mucked things up, the average has been a loss of 8.9%. That's not even including 2008 year-to-date, which doesn't look so pretty.

And now back to our regular programming …

I followed Hurricane Ike last night from here and from here. Just a remarkably large storm. Latest info I heard this morning in an interview with a local electric company spokesman was that over 2 million are without power and that the above-ground infrastructure was devastated. I can’t wait until the heroic efforts of all involved to re-establish normalcy results in mindless liberals saying, “Yeah, right, bunch of white people need help, they get it – but remember when Bush told everyone to ‘Let them New Orleans people clean it up themselves?’” Of course, neither W nor anyone else said anything of the kind. Of course, everything was done as best it could be done to help everyone affected. And equally of course, the whining mindless among us that think they live in a socialist society will whine their mindless rifts anyway. I love free speech because I get to say what I want to say. The price I pay for that is listening to the free speech of other people. I gladly pay that price. I do wish, however, that more people understood that there is no correlation between volume and intelligence. (Oh, and between acting ability and intelligence, either. Nudge nudge wink wink, Hollywood.)

I’ve read a bunch about Obama replacing Biden with Hillary. The articles and postings fall into two categories: Exploration of the idea, and drive-by statements.

The drive-bys are all - well, it COULD happen!, but sorely lack any exploration of the idea. Let’s do that for a moment.

It is commonly said that the very first important decision made by a POTUS candidate is the selection of his (I hope “her” someday soon without any candidate in mind) running mate. Lots of times, the selection is driven by electoral concerns: LBJ was greatly disliked by JFK, but the dude brought Texas into the fold; Spiro T. was mainstream Maryland and Eastern Seaboard; Bush the Elder was East to balance Reagan’s West.

Obama had a slew of folks with raised hands, “Pick me! Pick me!” Certain people are vetted and others are not. This is where Obama made a small gaffe in the family of – what’s the word? Oh yes … – dissing someone. The uncorrected word on the street was that Hillary was never vetted, hence, Hillary was never considered. Whew! Don’t even vet a Clinton? Don’t even go through the motions? That was a bit of a slight to her. Totally unnecessary.

So in the process of selecting his running mate, Obama kinda sorta did some clumsy moves. Nothing fatal.

He picked Biden, of course. I laughed my ass off when I learned that. I have watched Biden for years only because I follow politics. This guy has two problems: He absolutely cannot shut up, and he wears his arrogance like a stamp on his forehead. His arrogance compels him to seek to “win” every transaction. His open mouth compels him to win every transaction ad nauseum. The problem he has always faced is the camera. That dang thing records stuff and, wouldn’t you know, it gets played back.

He has not only been crucified in the press over the decades, he has been laughed out of every POTUS run he made. The dems made fun of Palin’s small-town (pop. 9,000) mayor spot until someone did the math: Palin got more votes for mayor than Biden ever got for president. Ouch.

So Biden is personally difficult. Does he make up for it in electoral votes? No. Delaware is just a few – so they tried to make it up: Biden is from Scranton, Pennsylvania, and that will bring the Commonwealth’s EVs into the Obama fold.

Two problems. First, although W was within a couple points in PA, the EVs still have gone dem for four cycles. And with Rendell in office, it’s not really that much in play. Second, Biden left here when he was 10 years old. Ten. I grew up in Scranton. Live outside it now. I never once in all my years of having my political ear to the rail heard of Biden as some “local boy makes good.” Not even once.

So did Obama think Pennsylvania was in play? I think so. But why is it in play? Because we cling to our guns and religion, and we do not like people that make fun of us while visiting San Francisco. Obama really blew it with those comments. And McCain is viewed as military. And Palin is viewed as normal, and the First Dude of Alaska is union (although these points were after Biden’s selection). It’s like a perfect storm.

So picking Biden hasn’t helped, and really had no structural means of helping. So many question the wisdom expressed by Obama in his choice.

Should Obama replace him with Hillary? McGovern did it when he offed Eagleton in 1972.

Biden would be humiliated. But more importantly, Obama would be seen as, “You picked a girl? Oh yeah! Well, me, too!” And the worst part for him is this: With only 7 or so weeks left, he would have to let the Big Dog off his leash. Obama would shrink from view. The Clintons would own him completely.

Can you imagine Hillary not running on her own in 2012? She would be a sitting VP running against the sitting POTUS. Obama would become a “Where is he now” entry by the time we hit 2020. If he allows that, he is a fool.

He made his choice of VP. He cannot switch now. It would be political suicide – maybe for the ticket, but certainly for him. The best he can do is offer the Clintons the positions of their (yes, two) choice in his administration. It’s kinda like dealing with the mafia, only worse because they don’t kill you. Poor bastard.

If he changes his choice of running mate, it will be an admission that he was wrong the first time. Big failure. History shows us that McGovern went on to lose 49 states and only winning 1. Or, as Obama would say, “He won 1 and lost the other 54.”

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