Joe Biden is Barack Obama’s running mate.  Forgive me for sighing — not with relief — but with the sad recognition that nothing changes and that Barack’s whole campaign of hope was merely slogan and not a new way of breaking the current way of Washington.

I’m not sure how you can run as a new thinker when you have an old guy on your ticket to give you gravitas and experience that you obviously feel you lack. 

How bizarre is it that the very thing you’ve been smashing your opponent for — being old and out of touch — is precisely what you’ve added to your ticket? 

Joe Biden is just as old and worn out as John McCain.  Next!  And I like Joe Biden a lot, but, NEXT!

Barack Obama has lost his steam and his power.   I think part of his slow decline into the mediocre middle is his missing emotion on the campaign trail and his lack of details on making anything better than it is now, and his giving in on FISA is just, frankly, unbelievably disappointing:

Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) today announced his support for a sweeping intelligence surveillance law that has been heavily denounced by the liberal activists who have fueled the financial engines of his presidential campaign.

In his most substantive break with the Democratic Party’s base since becoming the presumptive nominee, Obama declared he will support the bill when it comes to a Senate vote, likely next week, despite misgivings about legal provisions for telecommunications corporations that cooperated with the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance program of suspected terrorists.

In so doing, Obama sought to walk the fine political line between GOP accusations that he is weak on foreign policy — Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) called passing the legislation a “vital national security matter” — and alienating his base.

Then Barack dropped his opposition to offshore drilling even though he, and anyone else with a rational mind, knows that sort of limited drilling will do nothing now or in the future to pull us away from the teat of Middle Eastern oil:

Orlando, Florida – Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said on Friday he would back limited offshore drilling as part of a broader energy package that attempted to bring down gas prices and reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil.

Obama dropped his blanket opposition to any expansion of offshore drilling and signaled support for a bipartisan compromise in Congress aimed at breaking a deadlock on energy that includes limited drilling.

When Barack gives in on FISA and offshore drilling — you begin to feel a thin film of “Old School Politician Slime” covering him — and you wonder how, once he’s been tainted by giving in on his own misgivings, he can expect the rest of his hardcore support to ever forgive him for giving up on those important matters.

Barack’s mistake is moving too far to the middle and trying to be everything to everyone
— and in that false mollification of the middle, he loses ground, he gives up his bearings, and he becomes ordinary.

Is there really now a pound’s worth of difference between Obama and McCain? 

I’m beginning to think not — no matter who wins, we’ll still be stuck in Iraq, we’ll be drilling even deeper for oil in Alaska, we’ll continue to lag behind India and China in technological breakthroughs and we’ll have our necks broken trying to follow their massive stream of advanced engineering graduates into the world while we here in Das Homeland futter around with religion in the schools and bluster about our strength by building bigger bombs and we’ll obsess over talk radio ranting against women, Blacks and any other “stranger” that climbs a wall or crosses a sea to hope to become part of what was once a great calling for a nation, but has now become a mere imitation of itself as its values bleed away in foreign sand and its morality becomes tainted not by the Church — but by the state.

Not even Joe Biden can save us from that descent into a self-interested tail-eating while the rest of the world bites off our head.


  1. Hi David,
    I wonder if Obama tried to balance him being young by chosing Joe Biden as a VP nominee – as some were skeptical about his age?
    Hope it won’t backfire.

  2. Hey Katha —
    The problem with Obama picking Biden is that is makes him look weak and scared and — up until now — he’s been brash and daring and that was his appeal.
    So he picks a stodgy Washington insider to give his campaign a false gravitas and, as Barack said, the reason he picked Biden was so his VP would be ready from day one to take over as President… uhmn… okay… but aren’t the Republicans saying you’re too young and experienced to be ready from day one and you say that doesn’t matter… ?!!
    It’s a wacky pick — I. Don’t. Get. It. Honestly, he would’ve been better off picking Hillary over Biden! At least she’s newer and fresher and would make more history!
    Actually — his best choice was Kathleen Sebelius, Gov. of Kansas — but he was too scared to pick her and that, to me, is the beginning of his end.

  3. Yes David, scared. That’s what I felt too.
    And one will only be scared when he is directionless.
    I didn’t follow the VP nominee very closely so I don’t know about others – I was hoping that he would pick Hillary Clinton – Kathleen Sebelius was difinitely a good choice!

  4. Katha —
    I fear you’re right about Obama being scared. He’s been missing from the energy of the world since he became the presumptive nominee and giving Hillary and Bill TWO NIGHTS at HIS convention only sets THEM up as spotlight spoil sports for 2012 after his loss. I don’t know what he’s thinking bowing down to them after not even interviewing Hillary for the VP job. It makes no sense.
    So we have McCain — the tough old coot ready to drill into the earth to push, like puss, oil from the bedrock of America — vs. Barack Obama, who urges people to use a tire gauge to check their tire pressure to save on gasoline. Which would you choose as the rough-and-tumble cowboy to lead America into a dangerous world? The drilling prisoner or the priss with an air pump?
    Picking Hillary would’ve been a disaster on many fronts — picking Sebelius would’ve ticked off the Clinton crowd, but shown the rest of us just how daring Barack was willing to be in creating a whole new America… as it stands now… 27% of Hillary supporters say they’ll vote McCain instead of Obama so he had nothing to loose going for Kathleen instead of Biden or Hillary.

  5. The HRC supporters that say they will vote for McCain are, I have to assume, talking the talk but when they are in the voting booth and dreaming of a future of coat hangers and bombs versus continued legal access and withdrawal of their sons and daughters, they aren’t going to make the McMistake of a lifetime. 🙂

  6. If they wait that long to put their support behind Barack, Gordon, Obama will not win.

  7. See?
    Clinton Sabotage:

    A number of Sen. Hillary Clinton’s top advisers will not be staying in Denver long enough to hear Barack Obama accept the nomination for president, according to sources familiar with their schedules.
    Clinton will deliver her speech Tuesday night. She will hold a private meeting with her top financial supporters Wednesday at noon, and will thank her delegates at an event that afternoon. Former president Bill Clinton will speak that night. Several of Hillary Clinton’s supporters are then planning to leave town. Among them, Terry McAuliffe, Clinton’s campaign chairman, and longtime supporters Steve Rattner and Maureen White. Another of Clinton’s top New York fundraisers, Alan Patricof, did not make the trip to Denver.
    I don’t know why Barack gave them even a minute of his party.

  8. More Clinton gutting:

    Some senior Obama supporters are irritated at how they perceive the Clintons fanned — or at a minimum failed to douse — stories that she was not even vetted as a possible vice presidential nominee. This is because she told Obama she preferred not to go through the rigorous process of document production unless she was really a serious contender, an Obama associate noted.
    One senior Obama supporter said the Clinton associates negotiating on her behalf act like “Japanese soldiers in the South Pacific still fighting after the war is over.”
    A prominent Obama backer said some of Clinton’s lieutentants negotiating with the Obama team are “bitter enders” who presume that, rather than the Clintons reconciling themselves to Obama’s victory, it is up to Obama to accommodate them.
    In fact, some senior veterans of Clinton’s presidential campaign do believe this.
    “He has not fully reconciled,” said one political operative close to the Clintons, “and he has not demonstrated that he accepts the Clintons and the Clinton wing of the party.”

  9. Hi David,
    I’m actually not that worried about Obama’s choice for VP. It seems that there is no natural and obvious Vice-presidential candidate for Obama.
    i’ve also noticed that Obama is shifting his stance on certain key issues that his support base takes seriously. but all things considered, if the war continues even after (and if) obama makes president, it would be the sad end of a promise for change.

  10. Love that article on wordpunk, David. The one button idea is just so right!

  11. Dananjay —
    I certainly hope Obama wins — I just think he’s playing it too safe now when being daring is what worked to get him nominated.
    If McCain picks a woman VP then he will make a serious and historical chance to batter down the Obama wave and batten down a victory. If McCain picks Romney, then Obama stands an excellent chance of winning.

  12. Thanks, Dananjay! You have commenter status on RelationShaping and WordPunk, so you can always post a comment in those places, too. SMILE!
    Yes, the Obama buttons are just strange! They encourage the kind of stratifying PUMA protest we’re seeing in Denver:
    I checked the Obama website yesterday and there are no Obama-Biden buttons yet. Let’s hope they keep that button simple and uniting.

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