My normal style on this blog is to write think pieces. I post when I have an idea I need to grapple with; the process of writing and researching helps me organize and sharpen my thinking. Sometimes, the process changes my mind about an issue.
This once, I’m posting to report a gut feeling I’ve been getting more and more strongly in the last two weeks. It started with Barack Obama’s VP choice of Joe Biden, got stronger when McCain tapped Sarah Palin, and has become overwhelming in the last two days. My feeling is this: Barack Obama is toast. He’s done, stick a fork in him. It’s not that I think the McCain/Palin ticket is going to win, it’s that I feel strongly that the Obama/Biden ticket is going to lose.
Note: This is not partisan cheering I’m doing. I’m not a McCain fan: I’ve never forgiven him for the the McCain-Feingold “campaign finance reform” bill, which I consider the most atrocious rape-job on the First Amendment in my lifetime. And I agree with Matt Welch’s portrait of an authoritarian maverick; McCain’s is in many ways a frighteningly authoritarian personality. I have, at best, very mixed feelings about seeing him in the White House.
No, what I’m reacting to is a gut sense that the wheels are coming off the Obama bandwagon and it’s headed for a big, ugly crackup. I would no longer be surprised if Obama melted down in a serious way during the debates, though I don’t think keeping his cool will save him from being trounced. I don’t even think the election’s going to be close anymore.
Why? Lots of things. Poll numbers. Sarah Palin. The hysterically vituperative reaction to Sarah Palin from the left and the media (which I think is a gift beyond price to the Republicans). The way Obama himself seems to be fraying around the edges, losing his cool, gaffe frequency increasing. Democratic supporters dissing him in Duryea. I smell desperation and failure; I see the Democratic party, yet again, snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
OK, I’ve said it on the record. When the votes are counted, I’ll take the kudos or the lumps for it.
UPDATE: Democrats’ polling league in a generic contest has collapsed. Control of Congress is in play. Wow. Just wow. Considering how hard the Republicans have been fucking up and alienating their base, this is astonishing. EPIC FAIL.