By Alan Caruba
There always comes a time at some point in the process by which Americans select the next “leader of the free world” that one experiences the nausea incurred by too much political rhetoric. There is an impolite word for this that begins with the word “bull.”
Depending on one’s age, fortitude, gullibility, gender, et cetera, the nausea can set in early or late, but it will arrive and, with it, what is generally called wisdom. There is that quiet voice in the back of your head that says these are the same people that put the nation in the mess we’re in and we’re arguing over which one of them should dig the hole deeper.
How much change will either Sen. Obama, McCain or Clinton bring about when they have all been part of the gang that managed to add 55,000 “earmarks” over Bush’s seven years in office that cost Americans more than $100 billion? When the President sent a $13 trillion dollar budget to Congress this year, not one of them rushed to the microphone to suggest we’re broke. The government keeps itself in business by borrowing millions every day.
And, guess what? All around the world bankers and hedge fund gamblers are trying to figure out how much money they’ve already lost in the subprime mortgage debacle. One bank in France lost $7 billion because one very low level employee broke the rules and nobody noticed. That doesn’t put folks in a mood to lend to anyone, including the U.S. of A. where the value of homes is dropping like a stone.
I do not normally pontificate about politics. I am busy enough pointing to the cracks in the dam where policy failures in areas like energy, education, or immigration are showing signs of stress and collapse, enough to leave politicians standing around in Congress asking, “What happened” and not, as usual, having any common sense answers.
That said, it seems to me the wheels are coming off both parties. Forget about the rallies filled with cheering crowds, the endlessly parsed speeches and answers, or the drama of who won what state, has x-number of delegates, or cried (again). The voters are so sharply divided that the party leaders must be wondering how their candidate will be nominated without conventions where television viewers will watch anarchy in the aisles.
The party conventions are likely to be a bloodletting as the “big tent” collapses under the weight of fractious constituencies. Ultimately, the “super delegates”, party workers, most of whom will vote to protect their jobs, will decide the outcome. And absolutely no one will be happy.
For now, this onlooker is trying to recover from the nausea of a night of endless blather by people who are supposed to know what’s happening, but more often than not seem as confused as the viewers. As for the polls and the pundits, pay them no mind.
(c) Alan Caruba, February 2008