Topic: "Pass the Malais" (4)
Chris Matthews, a long time ago, worked as a speechwriter for the 39th President of the United States. During a period of economic downturn, when all of the news seemed bad, the President decided that he would go on nationwide television and talk to the American people. His plan was to emit a sympathetic ear, and to commiserate from a philosophical point-of-view. Matthews was not alone amongst the President's staff, in that he argued against calling the doldrums a "malaise," feeling that something inspirational would work much better. Jimmy Carter did not take Matthews' advice.
Frodo was reminded of this story the other day when he heard Barack Obama being quoted about the "bitter" feelings which seemed to characterize voters in the Rust Belt primary states. It seemed to Frodo that Obama was trying to be philosophical, and to explain his approach. Hmmph, thought Frodo, "How much better off he would have been, if he had simply read his speech at the 2004 Democratic Party Convention, even if it had no relationship to the issues" People, Frodo supposes, sometimes want inspiration, not sympathy.
Barack Obama has said, continually, that he would tell the people "not what they want to hear, but what they need to hear." In his best Chris Matthews imitation, Frodo says, "Don't do it."
The Democratic Party process is addled, at best. These stupid contests go on, ad infinitum, and it is conceivable that the kids will be back in school after summer vacation, and there still won't be a "presumptive" standard-bearer for the Democrats. What's worse, George W. Bush will still be in office, which means that absolutely nothing will be accomplished, and the current economic downturn is fraught with heretofore unknown peril. The boys will still be dying, for nothing, except, perhaps, for the fiscal coronation of Achmed Chalabi. One of the Bush daughters will get married (Frodo believes her gown should be red), and John McCain will also demonstrate to every voter able to read that he has absolutely no clue about anything.
Sometimes, dear reader, Frodo thinks that our only hope is that McCain gets pissed at some female reporter and punches her lights out. Frodo suggests Campbell Brown.
"Perhaps," says Frodo, "we should simply call it 'Spring Fever,' since it seems to be affecting us all." Rather than tuning in, turning on, and dropping out (remember that little bit of nostalgia, do ya?), although one of those sounds awfully tempting right about now, Frodo looks hopefully to Indiana and North Carolina, with a silent prayer that the voters there put us all out of our misery.