Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Democrats

One of the advantages of the telecommuting lifestyle is that I can sit here and listen to the radio all day, with no fear that my boss will suddenly walk in and think I'm slacking off. So I listen to interned broadcasts of talk radio from the states, and lately I've been inundated with endless election news and updates. Strangely, I've become more engrossed with American than Israeli politics. Maybe it's because in Israel, no matter who wins the election, Shimon Peres, Bibi Netanyahu, and Ehud Barak just trade seats. Since all of them will do pretty much whatever the American administration tells them to, and America has in the past removed from office a prime minister (Yitzchak Shamir) who wouldn't read their script, the American elections are in many ways have a greater effect on Israeli politics than the local elections.

As usual, the campaign is just a bunch of jingles with buzzwords like "Hope" and "Change," such as "The courage to change," or, "The hope to have courage," or "The hope to change our courage into... uh... hope."

First off, the Dems.

One of the things that turns me off to this party is "identity politics." It no longer matters what you can do but what you were born. A Republican can appoint a black Supreme Court Justice (Clarence Thomas,) a Hispanic attorney general (Alberto Gonzales,) or a black woman for National Security Advisor and Secretary of State (Condi Rice,) and a black Republican can consider running for President (Colin Powell) with no fanfare. As soon as Pelosi gets elected, headlines blare out loud, "The First Woman Speaker of the House!"

It's like the left in Israel which claims to care soooo much about Arab rights, while it was, in fact, the right under Begin that rescinded the "Chuk," the martial law which was in effect in Israeli Arab villages, without all the photo-ops and self-praising speechifying.

So, today we'll start with a primer on each candidate and what I think since, ya know, I'm a pundit and all.

John "No Chance" Edwards

He's whiter than mayonaise but still manages to get angrier than Jesse Jackson. The greivences, the blaming, the whining, it's all there. This is a "change" and "hope" election, and he's just a bit too conventional, and a bit too angry about life in general. Perhaps if he went through a radical "change" it would help his chances:
If he can transform into a black woman, he can get back in the running. Otherwise he's toast.

Advantages: He radiates anger. Lots of Americans are angry about their lives, so he can appeal to them.

Disadvantages: He's claiming to fight for the little guy, but he's got a 28,000 square foot mansion with an attached sports facility, and spent some time as a Hedge Fund manager. Hedge Fund is to the left what gay marriage is to the right; one of those evil words that always elicits a twinge of loathing, like Wal-Mart or Dick Cheyney.

On Israel: The usual boilerplate about being "Close friends" and "strong allies," yadda yadda yadda. Nothing interesting or original. One disturbing quote, "We haven't done enough to work on the peace process in Israel; we didn't sustain the progress that had been made there." Uh... John... what was seven years of Israeli retreat? I seem to recall that leading to war. You've done enough, thanks very much.

The other two Dems coming tomorrow!


Batya said...

Don't forget, the more "pro" Israel they are during the campaign the more pro-arab they are after. So I'd feel safer with an American President who doesn't pretend to like us and one our politicians find repulsive.

Ephraim said...

"One who our politicians find repulsive." I like that. My politicians find people like me repulsive, so it makes sense anyone they find repulsive is doing pretty good in my books.