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Damn you, Barack Obama

Win or lose, Obama's small donors may have already brought a revolution in campaign financing
By AL GIORDANO  |  September 26, 2007


"Why you gotta be so eloquent? . . .
Why you gotta get everyone all worked up?"

— Darian Dauchan

I tried to bolt the door, batten the windows, turn off the Internet, and cover my ears to the siren call of another US presidential contest. Even down here in my South-of-the-Border paradise, there's no place to run. The traditional refrain of "if you don't like the United States, why don't you move to another country" is moot, here in Mexico, now that the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is in full swing. As the social humorist Barry Crimmins answers those taunts: "Because I don't want to be victimized by its foreign policy." (I used to laugh every time Barry said it. Now I just quietly weep.)

For a while, the Democrats were making it easy to for me huddle by my cozy fireside of alienation. They took back Congress in 2006 and have capitulated ever since as the war in Iraq escalated and the Constitution continued its slide through the paper shredder. The polls and pundits scream that Senator Hillary Clinton has a lock on the nomination and that nostalgia for the mediocre 1990s shall define our inevitable future.

Will the Democrats really nominate another Clinton and inadvertently cede to a Republican DC-outsider like Rudy Giuliani or Mitt Romney the moniker of the "change candidate"? Not since 1928 has there been a presidential contest in which a sitting president or vice-president did not seek his party's nomination. That makes Clinton, due to her association in voters' minds with the Clinton White House (an image the candidate herself promotes), the de facto "incumbent" of the 2008 election at the precise moment that the electorate wants "change."

Please, somebody, anybody, stop those bells from ringing. I can't take it anymore.

Clinton has surrounded herself with the same tired White House gang. Corporate America's uber-consultant and pollster Mark Penn calls the daily shots in the Clinton '08 campaign. (It was Penn who told ABC News this month that, in 2000, Al Gore "thought there was Clinton fatigue. I thought there was Clinton nostalgia but not fatigue.") Mandy Grunwald pulls down a $360,000 salary running the media show for her second client named Clinton. Terry McAuliffe is the senator's chief fundraiser, and the rest of the campaign staff is similarly dominated by old Clinton hands, most of who sat out the past two presidential elections and are still wandering around in an Olympus of their own creation, seeking to relive the end of the past century.

The first Clinton administration turned out to be eight years of dashed hopes with its largest "accomplishments" enduring as dubious zombie policies that continued to haunt us long after the Clintons had moved to Chappaqua. (Remember welfare-reform and the squandering of the peace dividend?) NAFTA chased millions of Mexican farmers off their lands and northward across the border (providing grist for the xenophobes and radio talkers to persecute the migrant workers once they arrived), and has turned too many beautiful rivers and coasts down here into industrial cesspools during the past decade.

Yes, I'm covering my ears. Please make it stop!

And so the senator's rivals for the Democratic nomination deserve a look-see. US Representative Dennis Kucinich has been a three-decade stalwart on behalf of real issues. In our hearts we know he's right, but also that he hasn't the muscle to stop the return of the Clinton regime or its GOP counterpart. How about the old Senate warriors Chris Dodd and Joe Biden? Should we rally behind the gaffe-prone Governor Bill Richardson? The questions kind of answer themselves, don't they?

Some of us like John Edwards's populist tongue and position papers, his wonderful family, his southern charm, and the brickbats he tosses at corporate power, while acknowledging that Edwards has a cubic centimeter of chance (unlike Kucinich, who has none) to crack through the first-in-the-nation caucus next January in Iowa (where in ’04 he placed a surprise second to John Kerry) and become a contendah.

But we've seen that movie (and its formulaic sequels) before. It’s the quadrennial blockbuster where a big-money Democratic front-runner tramples the more attractive but under-funded alternative. When, in 1988, Jesse Jackson emerged as the last candidate standing between Michael Dukakis and his doomed nomination, Jackson, among other disadvantages, didn't have the millions of dollars it would have taken to ride an insurgent candidacy through to winning the Democratic National Convention.

Even if Edwards does crack through in Iowa, he won't have the resources to finish the race, and the coronation of Clinton as nominee will go according to script. I'm very sorry to say that, because the primacy of money is one of the main reasons why previous presidential campaigns made many of us want to ignore this one.

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  Topics: News Features , Barack Obama , John Edwards (Politician) , Hillary Clinton ,  More more >
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Damn you, Barack Obama
there's a short shelf life to the obama campaign and it should serve as sobering to those who romance american politics. a quick glance at this man's political life in illinois would awaken the reader, or for that matter those who opt to write about politics and walk in front of their own stories. the "us" and "we" would best be left from such endeavors.
By jeffery mcnary on 10/02/2007 at 3:37:49
Damn you, Barack Obama
I have driven to NH twice from phila and will going to SC and Iowa and i never got into a campaign before in my life. I have kids and i am sick and tired of the BUSH CLINTON BUSH CLINTON REGIME They are done and Barack has enabled the people to TAKE BACK AMERICA and the WHITE HOUSE. Barack has proven himself with his transparency bill he passed in 2006. GOBAMA
By DANIELLECLARKE on 10/04/2007 at 8:55:29
Damn you, Barack Obama
I have driven to Nevada to canvass for Obama. I joined about 200 others from out of State two weeks ago and we worked our butts off going door to door. I spoke to 200 people at least and only ONE supported Hillary. Several were pro Obama and the rest were undecided but willing to listen. We swayed a bunch of people and got about 145 caucaus pledge cards. We found two precinct captains for local neighborhoods. I even went to bus stops to talk to culinary workers on their way home from the casinos. They all loved Obama. I understand 10 percent of voters actually show up to caucuases, and if so, well, I've never seen a group more fired up, and Obama will win in Nevada for sure thanks to the dedication that he has inspired. In the room of 200 people that showed up at a musty union hall in 100 degree heat to canvass for him, the organizer asked, "who's done this before?" Almost no one raised their hand, including me. Almost to a person everyone that showed up that day had NEVER been involved with a campaign before. We aren't being paid. But we showed up. If Obama can bring that out in me and so many others, think what this great man can do when he becomes our President? I'm tired of politics as usual. I feel like a kid again because I'm so inspired. If you haven't checked out Obama yet, go to youtube and do the research. You'll see why I'm so fired up. Obama 08!!!
By Lance on 10/05/2007 at 1:01:56
Damn you, Barack Obama
hey, feel free to sit a little closer.:-), "the pump don't work 'cause the vandals took the handles."
By jeffery mcnary on 10/06/2007 at 2:37:06
Damn you, Barack Obama
don't fool yourself, obama is corrupt. he has voted to fund the war every time, voted to extend the patriot act, supported the US backed invastion of Somolia, admitted that we may be in Iraq until 2013, expressed willingness to bomb pakistan and Iran, wants to expand the military and maintain the lock of the insurance companys in a mandatory for profit health care scheme. yes he is a great public speaker, but actions speak louder that words. he didn't even vote on labeling Iran's military a terrorist group (giving Bush the right to attack in his war on terror.) if you want real chance vote kucinich.
By sniffingratty on 10/29/2007 at 1:38:40
Damn you, Barack Obama
THAT ANYBODY KNOW IF THE FOLLOWING IS TRUE? Who is Barack Obama? 1- U. S. presidential candidate, Barack Hussein Obama 2- Born in Honolulu , Hawaii , Father: Barack Hussein Obama, Sr., a black Muslim from Nyangoma-Kogel , Kenya ; Mother: Ann Dunham, a white atheist from Wichita , Kansas . Obama's parents met at the University of Hawaii .. When Obama was two years old, his parents divorced. Father: Returned to Kenya .. Mother: Married Lolo Soetoro, a radical Muslim from Indonesia . 3- When Obama was 6 years old, the family relocated to Indonesia .. 4- Obama attended a Muslim school in Jakarta . He also spent two years in a Catholic school . 5- Obama takes great care to conceal the fact that he is a Muslim . He Is quick to point out that,"He was once a Muslim, but that he also attended Catholic school." 6- Obama's political handlers are attempting to make it appear that Obama's introduction to Islam came via his father, and that this influence was, temporary. In reality, the senior Obama returned to Kenya Soon after the divorce, and never again had any direct influence over His son's education. 7- Lolo Soetoro, the second husband of Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, introduced his stepson to Islam . 8- Obama was enrolled in a Wahabi school in Jakarta . Wahabism is the radical teaching that is followed by the Muslim terrorists who are now waging Jihad against the western world. Since it is politically expedient to be a Christian when seeking Major public office in the United States , Barack Hussein Obama has joined the United Church of Christ in an attempt to downplay his Muslim background. Let us all remain alert concerning Obama's presidential candidacy. Please forward to everyone you know. The Muslims have said they plan on destroying the US from the inside out, what better way to start than at the highest level.
By MAGN LIA on 11/20/2007 at 8:37:45
Damn you, Barack Obama
why would muslims give a child a name from the biblical book of Hebrews?
By kilalah on 01/31/2008 at 5:47:18

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