Saturday, January 19, 2008

America’s Worst Choices for Presidency

As is becoming clear that America’s party establishment and early voters in primaries and caucuses would coalesce around Hilliary Clinton and Mitt Romney, the bizarre spectacle of having both bad choices on the ballot is becoming a realistic possibility.

The case with Mitt Romney is very obvious. The guy spends enormous political capital in defending his Mormon origins when in the first place he should not have talked about the religion. It is amazing that in the year of 2008, a presidential candidate is talking about his religion and trying to bring the issue of religion in the political discourse. The founders intention of keeping American political discourse ‘secular’ goes to wind and Mitt Romeny, does not matter while defending his religion, is the party to that.

Then there is the question of his whole political style – pandering to special interests and what his pollsters tell Americans want to listen. It is totally a broken leadership with no spine and hence no ability to take consistent and tough decisions which are good for America in the long term.

The case with Hillary is bit complicated. She is clearly now claiming the votes on the gender basis and for the first feminist candidate; it is natural that such an advantage should accrue. However, she is not the natural leader who has risen from the ‘ranks’ on her own. No amount of argument can deny the fact that in the end, legacy of Bill Clinton is essentially providing foundation for her candidacy. Next, what about the all pervading sense of ‘entitlement’ with Clintons? That is amazing and essentially it is boiling down to feudal ‘Bush Clinton’ family run affairs of American Politics. American politics looks more like sub-continental (South Asia) politics. That is disgrace for America’s high political history and it is shame.

This brings then the question of her political judgment. She was wrong about Iraq and she refuses to concede her mistake. Beyond that, then what is the use of her experience? As far as her other political execution goes, she is a sister of Mitt Romney – pandering to interests group and triangulation based on ‘polling’ samples provided by Mark Penn. Bill Clinton is adding his ‘divisive politics’ to it. He used African Americans as captive vote banks for his eight years of tenure and now that a viable African American is on the screen, he is has dished out this African American constituency in favor of his new politically astute choice of Hispanics constituency. How opportunistic a former president can be. He should have left out of this race allowing primary politics to run it’s course. Instead, here he is with all of his tantrums dividing Democrats.

So here is the sad American spectacle now – we are likely to see two major candidates, potentially the only choice for Americans, who essentially would tell Americans what they ‘like to hear’ instead of what is good for them. With America’s challenges and problems, it is like as if drug dealers are in charge of reformation of a group of ‘drug addicts’. How sad and discouraging.

No comments: