Obama as McGovern?
TalkLeft describes the danger of an "Obama Bubble" which when popped might culminate in a McGovern-like crash.
To be clear, the McGovern comparison has nothing to do with Obama's liberalness. I don't think he's a liberal. The comparison has to do with the result in November if the bubble bursts on his message of hope and change and if the right wing successfully smears him with it. In that event, I'm asking whether the results in November will resemble those of the McGovern race.
The Barack Obama phenomenon is probably a compound of three things. Mr. Obama's own considerable talents as a politician and speaker; the reaction against the Clinton Machine and the absolute dearth of new ideas in the Democratic Party. It has nothing to do with renewed excitement in the Democratic Party message; it is intensely personal. The enthusiasm is generated by Him; the hope is engendered by the Face.
And to Barack Obama's credit he has carried a near-empty hand to triumph. That alone is testament to his political skill. But he has done it at the cost of not talking about the platform of his own party, which truth to tell, consists of a collection of rotting planks left over from the 1960s and which no one is safe treading upon. Instead of embarssing himself by talking about higher taxes, more appeasement and more special interest politics, Barack Obama has done the smart thing. He's talked about himself; about "us"; about the future, about Hope and most of all, about Change. The subliminal message is that we want to Move On. And part of what the electorate wants to Move On from is all the fermenting baggage that Hillary Clinton keeps hauling along. It's as neat a piece of conjury as has been seen for the last fifty years.
Thus the Obama "bubble" isn't his personal problem, it's his party's problem. He's throwing a personal force shield around a decrepit core agenda and if it fails sometime in the next few months it will be no fault of his. He's already done the unbelievable. Any collapse will be foreordained by the Democratic Party's agenda.
Comparisons to McGovern and 1968 are all the more painful because they highlight how little has substantively changed from then. McGovern gone from politics, but the dead agenda lives. And poor Obama, having to carry the moldering corpse on his shoulders!
Watching Obama struggle forward, keeping up his momentum with the thin gruel of speeches, charisma and bravado is almost like watching a champion who you know is eventually going to be overhwhelmed by uneven odds continue a game fight. Whatever one thinks of Obama, he doesn't deserve so tragic a fate. Obama's worst enemy isn't the conservatives. It isn't even liberals. It's the dead hand of the past. The Spirit of '68, cackling and wheezing from the closed room which no one goes into. Except Hillary, who emerges each time to pronounce Mother alive and well.