Today is

   "A word to the wise ain't necessary --  
          it's the stupid ones that need the advice."
					-Bill Cosby

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Politics and myth

Leon Wieseltier in The New Republic comments on the troubling mythologizing of the Obama candidacy:

"False hopes?" Obama told a crowd in New Hampshire. "There's no such thing." How dare he? There is almost no more commonplace trait of human existence (and of African American existence) than false hopes. I want universal health care, but I do not want to be relieved of the little that I have understood, and learned to accept, about the recalcitrance of the world. After Bush, who is not for a fresh start? But there is something unfresh about Obama's movement for freshness. We have been this young before. "She starts old, old," Lawrence wrote, in his discussion of the Leatherstocking Tales, "wrinkled and writhing in an old skin. And there is a gradual sloughing off of the old skin, towards a new youth. It is the myth of America." So can we agree on a ground between cynicism and myth? Or must we have Camelot once more? After all, being young again is also a way of living in the past. There was something mildly farcical about the Kennedys' endorsement of Obama-of this candidacy that is alleged to signify an alternative to the dynasties, and a break with ideological antiquity; but worst of all was its brazen delight in mythologization. (Thanks to the Obama campaign, millions of Americans now hold that John Kennedy was a great president and that Lyndon Johnson was not responsible for making civil rights and voting rights into law.) I understand that no one, except perhaps Lincoln, ever ran for the presidency on a tragic sense of life; but if it is possible to be too old in spirit, it is possible also to be too young.

Read the whole thing.


Anonymous Bill "Bubba" C said...

This pipe dream fantasy campaign is an Obamanation, I tell ya'!

February 12, 2008 9:04 AM  
Blogger Conservative in Virginia said...

It was a tough decision today. I almost skipped the primary. Talk about having to choose the lesser of two evils (or 4, in today's case).

CIV and spouse went to polls and had to announce which primary they would vote in. They were handed neon colored tickets announcing to the world which party they had chosen. CIV felt conspicuous with the Rep. ticket in the land of Dems. CIV spouse felt conspicuous holding a Dem ticket while looking Republican. Ugh. Not a fun vote.

[I do not know what "looking Republican" means and didn't ask.]

February 12, 2008 5:35 PM  
Blogger Kate Marie said...

You left us on the edge of our seats, CIV. *Which* Republican?

February 12, 2008 6:53 PM  
Blogger Conservative in Virginia said...

I hate to admit it, but I held my nose and chose McCain.

I thought about voting for one of the non-candidates on the ballot, but then I thought about Huck-a-bee and decided he would be worse than McCain. At least I think so. It was such a depressing choice.

February 13, 2008 6:50 AM  
Blogger stewdog said...

Good move, CIV.
“Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.” --Voltaire

February 13, 2008 1:37 PM  
Blogger Kate Marie said...

I agree it was a good move, too.

February 13, 2008 2:16 PM  

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