April 25, 2008

MAYBE SENATOR OBAMA REALLY IS MAGIC...:

Obama's Self-Inflicted Confusion: Maybe Barack Obama’s transformational campaign isn’t winning over working-class voters because transformation isn’t what they’re looking for. (Paul Krugman, 4/25/08, Der Spiegel)

But how negative has the Clinton campaign been, really? Yes, it ran an ad that included Osama bin Laden in a montage of crisis images that also included the Great Depression and Hurricane Katrina. To listen to some pundits, you’d think that ad was practically the same as the famous G.O.P. ad accusing Max Cleland of being weak on national security.

It wasn’t. The attacks from the Clinton campaign have been badminton compared with the hardball Republicans will play this fall. If the relatively mild rough and tumble of the Democratic fight has been enough to knock Mr. Obama off his pedestal, what hope did he ever have of staying on it through the general election?

Let me offer an alternative suggestion: maybe his transformational campaign isn’t winning over working-class voters because transformation isn’t what they’re looking for.

From the beginning, I wondered what Mr. Obama’s soaring rhetoric, his talk of a new politics and declarations that “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for” (waiting for to do what, exactly?) would mean to families troubled by lagging wages, insecure jobs and fear of losing health coverage. The answer, from Ohio and Pennsylvania, seems pretty clear: not much. Mrs. Clinton has been able to stay in the race, against heavy odds, largely because her no-nonsense style, her obvious interest in the wonkish details of policy, resonate with many voters in a way that Mr. Obama’s eloquence does not.


...his ability to get Maureen Dowd and Paul Krugman to talk sense certainly smacks of the supernatural.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 25, 2008 8:09 AM
Comments

When I read
"From the beginning, I wondered what Mr. Obama’s soaring rhetoric, his talk of a new politics and declarations that “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for” (waiting for to do what, exactly?) would mean to "

I began to think that maybe Krugman had some sense after all. I expected the next words to be something like, "... any normal human being who wan't already in love with the Big O." He started off good with "(waiting for to do what, exactly?)" but didn't come to the logical follow-on.

But I had fair warning up above, when he wrote:
"maybe his transformational campaign isn’t winning over working-class voters because" and didn't finish by saying, "all it is is a bunch of empty meaningless phrases strung together."

Posted by: ray at April 25, 2008 8:43 AM

Yeah, but he's still playing the bitter and troubled angle. Might one larger point be that these Christian folk already have a Messiah, and can spot a false one a mile away?

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at April 25, 2008 8:43 AM

Your comments at the end of the articles are one of the many reasons why reading this blog is a daily ritual. The Dowd and Krugman comment was just laugh out loud funny.

Posted by: Jay - Minnesota at April 26, 2008 12:43 AM

They write (well, at lest Krugman does) from profound disappointment. He has always wanted a Wellstone presidency, but Barack has been exposed as a cheap machine imitation. Too bad.

Posted by: ratbert at April 26, 2008 9:22 AM
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