As you know, dear Readers, I make a diligent effort to keep abreast of the latest insanity from the "Look over there, a sick baby holding a dying puppy!" faction of the War Party. This taxing project involves several agonizing daily minutes on DailyKos, a site dedicated to the proposition that one ah dese days, oh boy, one ah dese days, you'll be sorry, you'll see. The people who frequent the site see politics as a sort of psychotherapy, and the emotional effluvia that runs through the postings and diaries is one of the most lachrymose spectacles imaginable, with all sorts of ostensible adults blubbering for someone to return them to the bliss of the Clinton years, almost universally described in terms otherwise reserved for the unique experience of the womb--warm, nourishing, safe, and with the screams of mommy's victims muted by walls of flesh. The metaphor unfortunately breaks down, but you get the picture. The frequenters of DailyKos have long since abandoned any conception of politics as merely instrumental. Into the tacky discipline they pour hopes, dreams, aspirations, and a lot of lousy personality. It's never difficult to find some sentimental panegyric to those wise, noble creatures, the Democratic Presidential Candidates. Consider something called the NewHampster, which writes:
I love Joe, Bill, John, Dennis, Chris, Mike, Barack and HillaryA Capetian would weep at such praise. Aside from the unremarkable inconsistency (how can you love Mike Gravel and Hillary Clinton simultaneously, for instance, unless you don't listen to what either one says. Ah, you don't. Ne'ermind) there's the goofy Happy-Meal marketing-copy feel of it. Shouldn't that last line be "Collect them all!"
[...]Joe Biden for his honest heart felt passion.
Bill Richardson for his wealth of experience in foreign policy, managing government and the fact the he's a Sox fan.
John Edwards for his life long work for the little guys.
Dennis Kucinich for his bluntness, honesty and principles.
Chris Dodd for his stance on national service.
Mike Gravel because you have to love the crazy guy.
Barack Obama for his beautiful oration, his organizing skills and his belief in Democratic principles.
Hillary Clinton because she will always stand by me and never, ever stop fighting the wrong wing conspirators.
Why do you love them all?
We could note the merits of each argument, but what would you say? That Obama is a terrible orator prone to the windiest gasbaggery since William Jennings Bryan at least, full of the sort of ecclesiastical nonsense that you could just as easily get on AM radio at four in the morning, Martin Luther King Jr. as rewritten by a bad white screenwriter and spoken by a pompous black guy? That Hillary Clinton will not "always stand by" anyone or anything? That she's not fucking Ghandi, for chrissakes, nor even a Staples Sister? That Mike Gravel is not actually crazy? That national service sounds good until--oops!--the next war comes around and highway cleanup turns into conscription? That there is no such animal, vegetable, or mineral as "the little guy?"
Even more than anyone that you adore.