Now is the time for the Obamacrats to attack. After two and a half excruciating months of floundering, blowing a big lead in the polls and nuancing their campaign into freefall, Barack Obama and his legions must now take the fight to John McCain. Over the next week, Obama will reboot his faltering campaign with a series of decisive moves designed to halt McCain's rise in the polls and put the brakes on the decimation and dissension now breaking out in his own ranks.
Bedeviled by a penchant to nuance and flub many of his opportunities to inspire hope, Obama must now deliver an electrifying acceptance speech that is direct, succinct even blunt in its principal objective: devastating his opponent, John McCain. That part should be a piece of cake, but any hint of the same sort of convention the Democrats ran in 2004 would be disastrous.
In 2004, the newly minted Vice Presidential candidate, John Edwards, vetoed any convention criticism of the deeply unpopular incumbents George Bush and Dick Cheney, and John Kerry obediently complied. In taking such a bold but wrongheaded decision in a futile attempt to run what they deemed a positive campaign, the Democratic nominees in 2004 were actually stepping off a cliff and falling headlong into a political abyss.
With no zing, no debate, no essential tension and no credible statement of purpose, the convention fizzled and resulted in the poorest post convention bounce since records have been kept -- a paltry three percent if that. The arrival of John Edwards on the ticket doomed the Democratic Party to fritter away her most important opportunity to build a case for the defeat of Bush and Cheney.
In addition to a clear-cut message hewn out of stark contrasts juxtaposing Obama's positive vision with McCain's absurd record, it is high time for the Obamacrats to move into attack mode across the total spectrum of communication channels. Over the past three weeks, McCain has attempted to dismantle Obama as a mere media phenom, a whimsical particle of trivia, a footnote in the history of celebrity -- a series of ridiculous charges that have been allowed to go virtually unanswered.
While the Obama campaign has presented some feeble responses to McCain's fabrications, their ripostes have been timid and muffled, nuanced and hidden away on YouTube rather than landing body blows in the MSM via paid media. The lack of audible and visible responsiveness is why Obama is now dropping one percentage point every three days -- a dangerous warning sign that must now be halted with swift and decisive action. Needless to say, Obama's current rate of attrition will see McCain enjoying a comfortable lead beyond the margin of error by Labor Day if there is no effective counter attack beginning this weekend that will set the tone for the Denver convention next week.
Obama has selected an excellent attack dog in Joseph Biden, but now, the Senator from Delaware must become scintillating, and he must immediately go on the attack zeroing in on John McCain with language that identifies him for what he is: the single most lethal threat to American democracy since the War of 1812 when the British sacked Washington and burned John Madison's Presidential Mansion and the Treasury Building to the ground before skies darkened, and two tornados swept across the smoldering city bringing torrential rains along with chaotic environmental devastation. Having known Biden since 1971, I know that he has the speaking ability necessary for the assignment.
The convention itself could be problematic. The demands of Bill and Hillary Clinton for high profile roles and a needless Roll Call Vote risk the appearance of a deeply divided party. Every effort must be made to present an impregnable front united against the awesome threat of John McCain. Rather than the usual self-congratulatory retrospection and reflection on their personal golden era of halcyon days in the nineties, the Clintons must go on the attack against the Republicans and their monstrous standard-bearer, John McCain. This is a tall assignment for both Clintons, since they are the authors of the now discredited Third Way of Triangulation that helped facilitate the excesses of neocon economic destruction to produce a post-boom economy littered with bank failures, middle class bankruptcy and rapacious corporate socialism.
Any further hints of Clintonian compromise with the neocon juggernaut threatening to destroy the Constitution at this critical juncture of American history will eject the Clintons body, mind, heart and soul from the convention designed to rebuild America's crumbling dream of democracy via equality for all and privilege for none. Bill Clinton will be particularly challenged by his assignment for he has built a career predicated on compromising with the hard right in Arkansas, a daunting task at the best of times and a disaster most of the time as any brief visit to the place of bad roads will readily reveal.
But, the Clintons will have help. On Tuesday, the Keynote Speaker, Mark Warner, will follow Hillary, and Joe Biden will follow Bill on Wednesday. On Thursday, Barack Obama will follow the Roll Call Vote with his historic acceptance speech to a massive throng at Denver's Mile High Stadium that will eclipse the Clinton Era, demolish the neocons, demonize John McCain and launch the ship of hope onto high seas billowing above swift undercurrents signaling the rebirth of the American Dream.
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