I'll be 60 eight days before the election in November. This is a bad thing and a good thing. The bad thing is it ain't going to be a real long time before I'm dead. The good thing is I've traveled a few miles and have picked up something along the way, and that something is called "institutional memory".
As I watched news coverage of Monday night's debate, the ever-escalating "I know you are, but what am I?" fight between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton suddenly struck a memory from 28 years back. The feud between Teddy Kennedy and Jimmy Carter rushed into my mind like a horrible memory of an old girlfriend. My recollection of their self-destructive hostilities reminded me how their battles went a long ways toward giving this nation Ronald Reagan.
It was 1980, and the Democratic Party had two supposedly strong national candidates--one an incumbent president, the other a scion of America's national family. They were going up against a Republican Party that was searching for an identity and would go deep on the bench to nominate the host of "Death Valley Days".
I remember this as an election we shouldn't have lost. But as we have done so many times in the past, we Democrats figured out a way to step on our Johnson.
In that 1980 nominating battle, our two candidates went after each other like Sherman went after Georgia. The result? Unbelievably, half of Washington is now named after Ronald Reagan--though I'll still say I'm flying into National Airport until the day the Good Lord or the Devil calls me home.
Surely, I'm not the only one who can see this six-foot rabbit named Harvey. John McCain is going to be the Republican nominee. How do I know? Because "institutional memory" also reminds me that the Democratic Party I love can't count. And regardless of what you think of the Republicans, they can.
It should be clear to anybody with over a 50 IQ that my boy John Edwards, with his combination of red state electoral experience and toughness, is the only candidate who can beat John McCain. Whether you believe polls or not, polls from CNN to Rasmussen say just that.
And it should be equally as clear to anybody with over a 25 IQ that Obama and Clinton are going to render each other totally unelectable against any Republican, especially John McCain, by the time we get to the convention.
All the Republicans have to be loving this. Because the Democrat they don't want to face, John Edwards, is getting sandwiched between the coverage of this murderous cat fight between two so-called "historical" candidates who, when all is said and done, will be just that. HISTORY.