This morning I did surfed the web for news like we all do every day. I saw a video of the most spoiled American girl in history (a dumb blond beauty pageant queen). I saw a video of a 12 year old Taliban boy sawing off the head of a grown man. I saw a story about a woman fainting at a Barack Obama rally-overwhelmed with the message of hope and change, and I saw a story that President Clinton is back on the attack. Strangely enough, these are all related stories.
President Clinton said, (according to ABC News)
“There are two competing moods in America today, people who want something fresh and new — and they find it inspiring that we might elect a president who literally was not part of any of the good things that happened or any of the bad things that were stopped before. The explicit argument of the campaign against Hillary is that ‘No one who was involved in the 1990s or this decade can possibly be an effective president because they had fights. We’re not going to have any of those anymore.’ Well, if you believe that, I got some land I wanna sell you.”
In response, the Obama campaign pointed out,
“It appears that the man who once told us ‘Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow’ [Pres Clinton’s campaign song] has changed his tune and is now singing ‘Yesterday’ everywhere he goes.”
Now let’s think about that. In the Democratic Party we see a difference between people who are hoping for something new; a change from what we have. The other half of the party is saying that they want to go 8-16 years back in time. Half of the party is desperate-to the point of fainting at mere political rallies-for a hope that their concerns of today can change; that they are either not real, or that they are not facts of life on planet Earth. The other half of the party is even more freaked out by the events and things of the past 8 years that they want to go backwards in time to an era when they believed everything was hunky dory-to an era where the Taliban ruled Afghanistan, harbored Al Queda and Osama Bin Laden, and a time when Saddam seemed contained (even though the means of that “containment” was what Osama Bin Laden cites as his casus belli for waging war on the US [see also 911]). That 12 year old head-sawer-offer was a throwback of today to yesterday’s Taliban of the 90’s, and in complete contrast to the denial and ignorance that a 17 year old spoiled, dumb, American blond of today.
Republicans, on the other hand, seem to recognize today’s threats, face the failures of the past, and whether they fear for tomorrow or not, they seem more willing to deal with the world as it is today rather than succumbing to an empty politician’s promise of, “Just hope with me and vote with me, and everything will be fine.” Senator John McCain may or may not be conservative. He may not know a lot about economics, or be an environmental expert on global warming, etc. However, one thing is clear, John McCain will not ignore threats for 8 yearrs. He will not backburner intel for 8 months. He is a man who will defend us and do whatever can be done to protect us. There’s no reason to fear that such protection doesn’t exist. Economics, the environment, social issues…isn’t it interesting that these are the areas which conservatives fear, demand change, and too often cry out for hope that Sen McCain doesn’t seem to satisfy?
And so it is that there is a divide in the Democratic Party over tomorrow or yesterday while denying today, and in the Republican Party there is an acceptance of today, a frustration from yesterday, and a call for hope for tomorrow in some ways as well. What a perfect moment this would be for a charismatic man to say that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself-not yesterday, today, or tomorrow….just fear of the fear? Everything else will be ok.