Daily Revolt

October 05, 2007

Peggy Noonan: Obama Thoughtful, Hillary Programmed

This is an interesting article from Reagan's former speechwriter, and Wall St. Journal columnist, Peggy Noonan. She doesn't think much of Hillary or fellow Republican, George Dubya:
Mr. Obama often seems to be thinking when he speaks, too, and this comes somehow as a relief, in comparison, say, to Hillary Clinton and President Bush, both of whom often seem to be trying to remember the answer they'd agreed upon with staff. What's the phrase we use about education? Hit Search Function. Hit Open. Right-click. "Equity in education is essential, Tim . . ."

You get the impression Mr. Obama trusts himself to think, as if something good might happen if he does. What a concept. Anyway, I've started to lean forward a little when he talks.

Why is she so far ahead, again:
Mr. Obama's experience, as we all know, is as limited as Mrs. Clinton's, which is to say limited indeed. She has held elective office for only 6 1/2 years. Before that she was first lady of Arkansas and then first lady of the United States. He has held national office for only 3 1/2 years, and before that was a state legislator for eight years. But he has impressed people, and not with money, résumé or clout but something rarer, natural gifts. That's not nothing. Big talent is rare, and deserves consideration.

And yet the Democrats remain in their Hillary trance.

[...]Ted Sorensen, John F. Kennedy's great staffer and speechwriter, who told me this week, "I am supporting Obama." He has known and liked the other main candidates, has "no objection to a female commander-in-chief and no ill feelings stemming from the Clinton stains on the escutcheon of the White House." But Mr. Obama is "the one serious potential nominee of the Democratic Party who is most likely to win" and most likely "to end the tragic occupation of Iraq on terms compatible with our country's best interests and traditional values."

When I asked if his support was connected in any way to the idea of breaking away from the Bush-Clinton-Bush rotation, he said, "Above all, I believe this country needs change, and continuing the 20-year hold on the White House of the same two families is not my idea of change."

It's all about the connections:
That to me gets to the heart of the problem and the heart of The Trance. Mrs. Clinton is so far ahead so early on for the same reason Mr. Bush was so far ahead so early on in 2000, and after only six years as governor, with no previous offices behind him.

It is the nature of modern politics. A political family gains allies--retainers, supporters, hangers-on, admirers, associates, in-house Machiavellis. The bigger the government, the more ways allies can be awarded, which binds them more closely. Your destiny is theirs. Members of the court recruit others. Money lines spread person to person, company to company, board to board, mover to mover.

The most important part is the money lines. Power is expensive. The second most important part is the word "winner." The Bushes are winners; the Clintons are winners. We know this, they've won. The Bushes are wired into the Republican money-line system; the Clintons are wired into the Democratic money-line system.

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