Friday, September 05, 2008

No Reason Given

In 1992, not long after former Chair of the Joint Chiefs, Admiral Willaim Crowe publicly came forward and endorsed Bill Clinton for the Presidency, Will wrote a column that has stayed with me for sixteen years. In it, he said that then-President George H. W. Bush was offering no compelling reason to vote for him for the Presidency, and Will was at least nodding towards Bill Clinton because the Arkansas governor was at least offering substantive reasons to consider him for the office of the Presidency, even if he (Will) didn't agree with all of them.

Last night, McCain offered not a single substantive policy, not a single compelling idea, not one scintilla of evidence that he is offering the people of the US any reason whatsoever to consider him for the Presidency. Indeed, the constant invocation, not just in his speech last night, but over the previous few weeks, of his time in a North Vietnamese POW camp, reminds me not so much of the strength of character he has shown by coming through that ordeal with his sanity intact, but that it happened forty years ago, and is the only thing, in the end, he has to offer. This is not to belittle his experience; rather, it is to wonder out loud of the relevance of the issue.

What about the economy? The soundness of our financial system? What of the degradation of our military, and the shrinking of services for those returning from service, including wounded soldiers? What of the Constitution, to which the President swears an oath (not to the people, or to protect the physical integrity of the US)? The Republicans complained that the Democrats said the US is facing difficult times. There's a reason for that. The Democrats weren't talking down the United States; they were addressing the realities we face, and offering solutions. McCain offered nothing more than his biography as proof that he would . . .

I have no idea.

Virtual Tin Cup

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