Thursday, May 10, 2007

You know

it's pretty clear that Americans really don't look for much experience in our Presidents. I mean, in our extremely, extremely weird 2008 presidential candidate field, who is actually qualified on paper? Bill Richardson, who, strangely enough is a second tier candidate, and John McCain. I honestly can't really think of many other people. Anyone with national experience hasn't held office for all that long, John Edwards only served one term. Hillary Clinton served 2, and Obama, like, uh, half? And the current front runner for the Republicans has never even held national office.

Perhaps people vote for president the way they vote for American Idol, for whoever looks the best, or sounds the best at the time, or perhaps in some sick desire to see the whole system collapse, just for the hell of it. So does that mean that Giuliani is Sanjaya of the 2008 Presidential Elections? Only time will tell.

7 comments:

exangelena said...

The whole thing with Hillary Clinton has always bothered me because she's only running because she's the ex-president's wife. Most of the other female senators have served longer, beaten incumbents, gotten elected in red states or have extensive experience in government already ... but not her.

Jeff said...

When I was in 8th grade my teacher told us that all presidential elections came down to beauty / popularity contests, and we laughed it off (Ronald Reagan was president at the time, and we weren't old enough to recognize him as movie star Ronald Reagan, he was just an old man to us.) I guess I didn't have any sense of cynicism about politics yet, and couldn't belive what he'd said. After becoming an adult I realized that not only was my teacher right, it was far worse than he'd told us.

Nien said...

it's all about who has the best advertising! Obama is with SS+K who has done some interesting stuff with other brands..

lovelesscynic said...

Jeff and Nien you're probably both right. I think politics is just too boring and also too complicated for most people to follow. And we're pretty busy so we don't have much time to follow it even if we want to. So we just go with the surface, and so that's what the candidate markets for.

Although really GWB doesn't really win many beauty contests, says me anyway.

disreputable bird said...

That's what Jon Stewart told Bill Moyers, trying to explain why so many Americans seem to not care about politics. That we're often just too busy to pay attention, and the powers that be count on it.

Also - and I figured this out listening to a local NPR show when Seattle journalists comment on the news of the week - it's hard to learn about the issues. A listener finally called in from Greece because she was so exasperated with the way the panelists were criticizing Edwards for his $400 haircut and resurrecting the Clinton haircut story, both long debunked by blogs, btw. She patiently explained how the stories had been spun and then said that we Americans seem to get sidetracked with this kind of stuff and don't bother with the candidates' positions on issues that affect our lives. And here was a group of journalists yukking it up and amplifying the trivial misinformation. I'm afraid it has become more about image and a winning sentimental narrative than about policies.

exangelena said...

FWIW, my neighbor saw John Edwards in person and said he's way better looking in person than on TV.

Anonymous said...

John Edwards lives in my city and almost ran over my boyfriend in his SUV.

-Michelle