Friday, July 04, 2008

An old Arabic curse: May you get exactly what you want, or how Obama's candidacy is a good thing

Although it's tempting, I'm not making any prejudgments on where exactly Obama's campaign is going to go. For all I know he'll stick to his guns and be a progressive candidate. Or he may swing to the right. But either way, in Obama's candidacy we have the perfect test of the relationship between the Democratic Party and progressive values. What I mean by that is that we'll finally find out what they're made of with no sort of saving excuse to account for any failure. In 2000 we had the vote theft in Florida. In 2004 we had the absolute non-candidacy of Kerry vs. the cachet of Bush as the 9/11 President. In 2008 there's no such excuse. Because Clinton lost the primary we can't say that things would have been different if only Obama had secured the nomination.

Obama's campaign, and his possible Presidency, will either put Progressives who have faith in the Netroots style of Democratic Party support in power, vindicating their ideas about how politics in the U.S. work, or it will put them in their place, will invalidate their ideas and possibly brand them as being naive and a-historical.

So whatever happens, I'm happy to let events unfold and see the consequences instead of obsessively writing about every last nuance of all of it. Everything will come out in the wash.

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