Answering the McCain question-- he started strong last time, offering a moderate or compromise view that was appealing to many Americans. But he got crushed by his party because he wasn't playing ball. They withdrew support, ran false ads, the works (same thing they do to the democratic candidates). So a tame McCain revised his opinions to suck up to the (then) powers that be, in hopes to not end his political career.
The Democrats are always like herding cats; that's why "divide and conquer" works so well on them. They tend to be more thoughtful and independent. The Republicans are your power block; you're with us or against us, and if the latter, then you're all
the way out.
That's why, even though I think McCain isn't a bad person, he caved before and he will cave again to the tyranny of his party. He can't be trusted, because he runs with jackals, literally back-room politicians who decide everything. I'm sick of a powerless puppet figurehead.
As far as smarts, all our contenders are smarter than Bush. That's a pretty low bar, but a reaction is understandable. Hilary did appeal to me for her keen intelligence and experience, but she's been running a very dirty campaign. In Iowa, a series of push-polls went out to voters ("Would you vote for Obama if you knew he was raised in a terrorist camp?" that sort of thing)-- to all the toprunners except Clinton. My, I wonder who was behind that? :
My sister reports people following Edwards volunteers around and taking their literature off the door to leave their own handouts (saves finding the sympathetic base on your own). Just dirty pool. From an experienced politician like Clinton, I expect she knows these tactics are successful. But I'm sick of corruption. I want someone more upright, not just another brand of sleaze.
I also see Clinton as too willing to compromise. As has been pointed out with Bill's administration, he saved his "campaign promises" to fight pollution, enact social advances, etc. until the end of his term, so he wouldn't offend his corporate buddies. Then the new administration came in and repealed all of them. So Bill could pretend he acted in good faith, while he was just another one snacking at the executive feed trough. I don't expect Mrs. Bill to be any different. I want change, not a new flavor of more of the same.
Obama talks well, but I'm not sure he has the spine to pull off actual change. I would hope he'd get a lot of excellent support from people who are eager to see him succeed. It could be good. But I think for a real hard-line stance against the corporate interests who are poisoning our government, I'd back up Edwards. Obama is inspirational; Edwards is p*ssed. I'm
p*ssed. We're a match made in heaven!
Seriously, either of these guys would be great, and a vast improvement (need I say) over the dangerous outlaws we have now. I don't worry so much about the Democrat selections. What I worry about is a third party (which we desperately need) coming in and splitting the vote, a la Ross Perot. Many people (myself included) are hideously disappointed with the Democrats -- they are such wimps! So populist voters could easily be seduced into making a different choice-- and that would leave the old power-block Republicans in place, which is what keeps getting them in. I don't see them abandoning their winning formula now.
I can hope the Democrats start to act as if they have conviction -- as presidential candidate Chris Dodd did when he left his Iowa campaign to lead (successfully) a filibuster in Congress. At stake was a controversial measure that would give special legal protections to the telecom industry-- prevent them from being investigated for unlawful spying (another in-advance pardon, folks), and renew no-acccountability government spying powers. I mean, hello! Yes, this is the kind of action free citizens want. I wish they would realize that people want
this behavior and would support them more for doing it.
As chris rock said last night on UK TV...'Bush must have messed things up real bad that we got a black man & a woman in the running.' lol
Love it! Chris rocks!