The Wall/Murdoch-Street Journal Asks, "Barack or Hillary?"
by Rob Kall
The question is all about which Dem candidate is going to be easier to beat.
" Mr. Obama? If he really has tapped into something deep in the American soul, and if he can keep tapping until November, it's conceivable he could bring with him a new wash of Democratic seats that could reshape the Washington political landscape for years to come."
For my son’s 18th birthday. I pasted this into his birthday card:
Ralph Waldo Emerson said this, one of my favorite quotations:
A man is like a bit of Labrador spar, which has no lustre as you turn it in your hand until you come to a particular angle; then it shows deep and beautiful colors. There is no adaptation or universal applicability in men, but each has his special Talent, and the mastery of Successful men consists in adroitly keeping themselves where and when that turn shall be oftenest to be practiced."
To me, it means that the art of being happy and successful is to find that part of you that is most special, amazing, beautiful, wonderful and applying yourself through it.
Thinking about the quotation, from a political perspective, it’s not really the way the world works. Campaigns aim to attack the dirtiest, messiest, ugliest part of the candidate.
The Wall Street Journal is running an Op-Ed today, by Kimberley Strassel. Unlike much of the right wingnut drivel that usually appears in the WSJ op-ed section, this makes some sense. It’s titled “Barack or Hillary?,” and is subtitled, “Republicans ponder which Democrat would be tougher to beat.”
The article first reports,
“What's most surprising is how unified and optimistic many Republicans are that both Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama are beatable. With the Iraq war looking better, and the debate pivoting toward the economy, there's a new feeling of confidence.”
Strassel starts with the Clinton upside, meaning why she’ll be beatable.
Republicans have experience with this dynasty. They know what kind of campaign she'll run, what advice she'll receive, what sort of tactics she'll employ.
She explains that Republicans are confident that Hillary’s high disapproval ratings will be her downfall.
Then she discusses the downside—why Hillary will be tough to beat…. And she starts off with the exact same reason.
“Republicans have experience with this dynasty. They know what kind of campaign she'll run, what advice she'll receive, what sort of tactics she'll employ.”
And Strassel adds that Clinton “will skillfully exploit whatever ugliness comes out of the current Republican Brawl.”
The Wall Street Journal article starts off looking at the downside of Obama;
He's an unknown, a change, a mental shift, for Republicans who'd been gearing up for Mrs. Clinton. He's skillfully tapped into a bitterness with the status quo, and his optimistic message of hope is tough to counter (just ask the tearful Mrs. Clinton). Is Obama-mania at its start, or its peak? The great fear of Republicans is that it's the former.
Mrs. Clinton has a ceiling on her support. No matter how great a race she runs, any victory will be unlikely to result in significant Washington realignment. But Mr. Obama? If he really has tapped into something deep in the American soul, and if he can keep tapping until November, it's conceivable he could bring with him a new wash of Democratic seats that could reshape the Washington political landscape for years to come. That's a big gamble.
Looking at the upside, the reason for hope Republicans can beat Obama, Mr. Murdoch’s “Fox News Journal” talks about ways to attack Obama—for a “curious real estate deal” (which Obama has clearly shown he was a clean party in,) and that he’s more liberal than… whoever. Strassel writes,
"I can see it take hold, that he's the most liberal Democrat nominated by the party in years and years, and despite his obvious intelligence isn't ready to be president in a time of war. I can see that getting traction in a Republican and independent electorate and keeping him below 45%" says Whit Ayres, a GOP strategist. "On the other hand, three-quarters of the people in this country are dissatisfied. And I can see him with his eloquence, and his ability to use the language and frame an argument, so inspiring people that they say, 'let's give this guy a shot'."
It’s clear, the Republicans ,with their pathetic fundraising this year, will be depending more than ever on PACs and 527 swiftboat organizations. The question is, will the victorious Democratic candidate be able to anticipate and neutralize the certain to appear swiftboat ads? Here in Bucks County, Patrick Murphy was told, probably thousands of times, that he would surely be a victim of swiftboat ads. The amateur political prophets, myself included, proved to be right. And Patrick was ready. His response was swift and effective, possibly even helping his campaign.
If Hillary or Obama can do the same, then they will, like Emerson described, be able to promote his or her candidacy based up that particular angle; that shows deep and beautiful colors. But that’s a big “if.”
My take on this article is that Obama is the bigger unknown. That means, for the Dems, he's a bigger risk-- lower disapproval, but more potential stuff that could come out of the closet. As Strassel wraps up her article, considering different match-ups of Clinton or Obama between the various GOP candidates, she closes, saying, and I agree, "Whatever the combination, hold on tight."
Rob Kall is executive editor and publisher of OpEdNews.com, President of Futurehealth, Inc, inventor and organizer of several conferences, including StoryCon, the Summit Meeting on the Art, Science and Application of Story and The Winter Brain Meeting on neurofeedback, biofeedback, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology. He is a frequent Speaker on Politics, Impeachment, The art, science and power of story, heroes and the hero's journey, Positive Psychology, Stress, Biofeedback and a wide range of subjects. See more of his articles here and, older ones, here.