Political limbo – how low can you lower the bar?

You knows it's true.Bill Clinton is good at politics, no question.  Politics require no follow through, just promises, platitudes and an ability to not bind yourself to reality in what you say.  Bill Clinton in great at politics.

On the Charlie Rose Show, Bill Clinton tap danced through a mine field on a great number of issues, most pressing is that his wife runs serious risk of losing Iowa and New Hampshire next month.  But that is not her fault, it’s the fault of the media and, to a lesser degree, the other candidates running.  Implied throughout is the fact that voters in Iowa and New Hampshire simply aren’t smart enough to choose properly, kind of like when Bill told a group in Buffalo:

 “We could give it all back to you and hope you spend it right… But … if you don’t spend it right, here’s what’s going to happen. In 2013 — that’s just 14 years away — taxes people pay on their payroll for Social Security will no longer cover the monthly checks… I want every parent here to look at the young people here, and ask yourself, ‘Do you really want to run the risk of squandering this surplus?’ “

People are too stupid to spend their own money “properly,” whatever that means, and they are easily manipulated into voting for people who are unqualified to be President based upon media manipulation and feelings.  Kind of like how he got the job.

By attempting to lower the expectations he’s hoping to keep Hillary’s campaign alive until Super Tuesday.  She has the money to go that far, but she won’t have much of a reason if she doesn’t win something early unless the bar is lowered to the point that losses were somehow either part of the plan or no big deal.

For the voters of Iowa and New Hampshire, who revel in their first in the nation status, this could be a major insult. After all, they fought long and hard with many other states to maintain their traditional roles so they, as small states, would have influence.  They’re now being told they are easily manipulated by someone being in the state campaigning for years (Edwards) and by the fact that someone else is from next-door (Obama).

In an attempt to lower expectations, Bill Clinton is running risk of ensuring those low expectations are met. 

The way he has been acting on the trail for his wife, the things he’s been saying, makes you wonder if he really wants her to win.  We know we don’t.


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December 2007
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