Let’s talk more politics.
Democrats: I barely understand the primary system but, if I read this right, odds are pretty good that Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic nominee. She already has a 105 delegate lead over Obama right now and only two states have held primaries (apparently a number of “superdelegates” have already pledged for her). All she needs to do is stay within 2 votes of Obama in each subsequent state – which she’s done so far, and I see no reason to suspect she can’t – and it’s hers.
I have a hard time seeing how Clinton would be much different from Bush*. She supported the bill that declared Iran’s uniformed, identified army a terrorist organization. She not only voted for the PATRIOT Act in 2001 (which, to be fair, every serious candidate did), but she voted to renew it in 2006 (which Obama did as well). She was the first lady to the President who sent troops to Haiti in 1994, Bosnia in 1995 and Kosovo in 1999 (and she openly endorsed all those at the time, and when asked later). She’s collected the most donations from the defense industry – more than any Republican, in a development that’d make Reagan spin in his grave. And she’s been explicit in her rhetorical defense of a strong unitary executive: “I want this President, or any future President, to be in the strongest possible position to lead our country in the United Nations or in war.”
Obama’s not much better in my eyes, but he at least gives lip service to the notion of bringing the troops out of Iraq. I wouldn’t start endorsing him all of a sudden: U.S. troops will withdraw from Germany before they withdraw from Iraq. I know that preferring one candidate over another for their rhetoric, rather than their (largely identical) voting record, is pretty feeble, but you’re asking me to distinguish between apples and apples here.
Republican: It amazes me that Ron Paul is called the “crazy one” in the Republican race, where the lead candidates are a Mormon who wants to ‘double’ Gitmo**, an open and avowed creationist and a senile old man who no longer knows what he thinks. Yes, Ron Paul is either a racist or carries water for racists. But I have a hard time believing that, if Fred Thompson or John McCain heard someone say “Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks three days after rioting began” behind closed doors (say, at a fundraising dinner, two to five Scotches in), they wouldn’t nod their heads and smirk.
Of course, I’m not voting for Dr. Paul, or any Republican, or any candidate at all for that matter. So the question of whether Paul is as racist and crazy as your typical Republican presidential candidate or slightly more racist and crazy is probably academic.
So that’s what we’ve got to look forward to until November.
* Could I have said the same thing 16 years ago, I wonder? Hmm …
** Double what, the complement of troops there? the number of enemy combatants held their without trial or recourse? the square footage enclosed by walls?