International Writers Magazine: US
"Injustice in the end produces independence."
Francois Marie Arouet Voltaire
the risk of beating the dearly departed equine, we submit for the
public record one last time -- with the caveat that it is not only
worth repeating, but will be the deciding factor in what is shaping
up as a seminal moment in American presidential history -- Independence
weeks of following the voting trends in the Democratic and Republican
primaries/caucuses, we have returned time and again to this key
element: Despite exit polling of stark contrasts in conservative
vs. moderate vs. Evangelical voting blocks on the Right and women,
black/Latino, and an economic range voting block on the Left, nothing
has crossed the divide of this polarized nation than the quickly
emerging, highly influential, and increasingly mighty Independent
almost two months now Independents have wreaked havoc on the nomination
process, causing the kind of bizarre results that have rocked the very
foundation of party power brokers and sent talk radio into paroxysms
of fear. And these fears, such as they are, can now be considered well
founded, or as Dick Nixon used to say, "It ain't paranoia if they're
To wit: On Christmas Eve a discussion group of politicos
set strong betting odds on the frontrunners for both parties: They were
solidly, as they had been all summer, Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Rodham
Clinton; powerful national figures with name recognition and celebrity
appeal -- heretofore critical prerequisites for chief executive. The
most likely runner's-up, or the candidates that could cause the most
trouble for both, were John Edwards and Mitt Romney; middle-aged, white,
populace mongers -- also key skill sets for centuries of presidential
timber. The idea that Barack Obama (youthful, unknown black junior senator)
and John McCain (much older, hanger-on, Washington maverick) would be
the presumptive nominees of their respective parties by mid-February
was not only laughable it was patently insane.
So how did we get here?
The easy breakdown is that on the Democratic wing,
Madam Shoo-in has been an interesting cocktail of grating and arrogant,
her husband has suddenly become stump poison, and she is now bouncing
her head against an already low ceiling of likeability while battling
overall abhorrence within the party. On the Republican side, the defense
of McCain's ascent from completely bankrupt/yesterday's news to "most
electable" can be laid on the stupidity of Giuliani to ignore six
state elections before competing, Fred Thompson's flaccid attempt at
campaigning, and the general assumption Romney cannot help but lie about
everything under the sun.
There is also the ethereally lazy assumption that somehow
Obama has tapped into some kind of spiritual meteor while McCain has
warmed our hearts.
However, for the record, I now submit an eye-opening Gallup
poll published in the 6/13 publication of this column entitled, "Independence
'08", which canvassed registered voters across the fruited plains,
the results of which looked like this: Republicans, 27 percent; Democrats,
34 percent; Independents, 38 percent. And although everyone but desperate
news organizations have roundly discredited the very concept of polls,
this baby has come home to roost -- big time.
The two-party system, which has halved the ideological
soul of this nation for over a decade, has now reached its breaking
point. The special interest fobs and extremist twits who have monopolized
the national discourse for decades are being swept under by a tidal
wave of independent voting. Republicans and Democrats are crossing lines.
Fiscal conservatives fed up with social fascists, liberal lions pissed
at whining granola heads, war hawks and peaceniks, activists and casual
observers are jumping around like never before.
This is why Chris Matthews and Wolf Blitzer and the entire
FOX NEWS goon squad appear as if they've never covered an election before.
All of their stale propaganda and has-been punditry is being trampled
with every passing vote.
Where is the Union vote?
Where are the anti-gay voices?
Where is the gun lobby?
Where is the entitlement threat?
Gone. Gone. Gone. Gone.
The pollsters are inert. They no longer know what queries
to pose. The columnists are dumbfounded, clawing for trends and trying
to appeal to anything that still resembles a one-dimensional audience.
Robert Novak has been relegated to trying his hand at Hip Hop poetry
and Lanny Davis has started a Jane Austin book club. Entrenched government
dealmakers have no idea where to turn to kiss ass, grease wheels or,
heaven for fend, endorse. Congress is so confused its wasting hours
on Capital Hill wondering if Roger Clemens doped up or the Patriots
videotaped their way to Super Bowl titles.
God help the insiders who suddenly find themselves outside.
Washington is normally a vapid tunnel of innuendo and gross misconduct,
but when this primary season is over it will look like something chaired
by Tina Turner in a wacky eighties jumpsuit crying, "Two man enter,
one man leave!"
The worst kept political secret is out: Independents are
deciding the candidates for the 2008 presidential election, and pretty
soon they will decide the national contest; and the quicker the press,
the party big guns, and perhaps the Clinton Campaign digests this, the
sooner they can get on with the business of dismantling it.
And don't worry, fans, you know that's coming.
There is only one way for the Billary Brigade to save
their inevitable conquest; and its not to demean their opponent as a
cheap Jesse Jackson forgery or sack half their campaign staff, or send
Big Bill to the nearest glory hole to shut him up, it is to rally the
old-guard base. Failing that, she can start wooing Independents, but
that's too cheap a ploy even for a Clinton.
And as sad as it might seem to these faux conservative
barkers that have seen fit to usher this nomination over to McCain with
their tired blustery nonsense and name-calling, they too need to begin
pandering to the party lifers or get off the tracks, for as the political
sage Voodoo Madam Sissy Meechum once said, "The train be comin'".
© James Campion - Febrauary 15th 2008
John McCain has all-but gained the big ride.
Then There Were Three
McCain Seals Deal/ Dynamic Duo Cage Match
in the late hours of 1/29, George Will, Bill Bennett, Rush Limbaugh
and the rest of the faux conservative Republican voices in and out of
the party came to fully understand, once for all, the jig was up
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