Monday, June 9, 2008

Campaign Overload (and a dose of flowers)

Is anyone else out there sick of the presidential campaign? The election is five months away and I'm already over it. The Obama-Clinton melee was bad enough, and for those of us who claim allegiance to the Democratic party, painful to watch. Just as the party should have been uniting in its excoriation of the Bush administration, it bloodied itself in a costly battle of egos and overspending. As for "McBush," his rightward drift from a moderate Republican record simply reflects his desperate attempts to pander to the more conservative wing of his party. Given his recent behavior, it's clear that a vote for McCain would prove the equivalent of handing Bush a third term - a disastrous prospect for this country. And although Obama's election would herald a paradigm shift in the American political landscape - while injecting a much-needed shot of JFK-like youthfulness and enthusiasm - there is no guarantee that he can reverse the treacherous course plotted by Bush. Indeed, I'm concerned that an Obama administration would resemble that of Jimmy Carter - characterized by an earnest desire to effect change but hindered by the bureaucratic and ideological roadblocks that define politics inside the Beltway. The bottom line, unfortunately, is the reality that the next four or even eight years will not right the wrongs of Bush's two terms of damaging - and unconstitutional - policies.

Perhaps as the election nears I'll become more eager to follow the campaign. I'm keenly interested, for example, in the vice presidential choices. Both candidates will need to choose a running mate who can deliver either a key state or critical bloc of voters. For McCain, that may mean selecting someone who can satisfy the now lukewarm right wing of the Republican party. With an Obama/Clinton ticket out of the question, Obama will have to find a running mate who can deliver some of the constituencies to which Hillary appealed, especially organized labor. We can only hope that undecided voters in both camps will be so fed up with Bush, and insecure with the prospect of continuing his policies under McCain, that they'll vote for change in November.

About the flowers: The digitalis (or Foxglove) is part of an apartment building's garden on 9th Street in the East Village. The climbing roses anchor the wrought-iron fence that surrounds the Jefferson Market Garden on Greenwich Avenue in the West Village. It's huge and is much larger than this photo suggests. Also note that in some spots there's a purple clematis vine growing through the rose, offering a nice contrast to the very subtle pink of this climber.

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Eva said...

Aww, the picture of the pink rose is gorgeous!

I like your blog. I cannot imagine how busy your life must be. Then again, they say boredom is the rooting for everything evil, so in that picture, you must be a pretty nice guy! :-)

jblack designs said...

Unbelievably lovely! (The flowers, not the politics, yes?)

You're not alone in being tired of the never-ending election season. I fear it's only going to get worse. I loved Jimmy Carter (still do), and I know he gets bashed a lot for his presidency, but we could've--and have--done a lot worse. I stood in line two hours to vote for him. Well spent, I'd say.

A friend recently said it doesn't matter if we vote because life goes on no matter who's in office. I begged to differ: No Bush would've meant no war, I am firmly convinced.