As a long-term registered Democrat who increasingly identifies as an independent and has weathered a torrid, post-9/11 love affair with conservatism, I am in a good position to judge Democratic prospects this nominating season. And I think we ought to listen to Mama and let Daddy-o go.
Fellow Democrats, there's something I've been meaning to tell you, but I've been a little uneasy bringing it up. Well, here goes. I don't think Barack Obama is for you. And I think we need to talk about it.
Wait, wait, before you get defensive--just hear me out. I know you love him. I know he's got a lot to offer. He's handsome, brainy, charming, passionate, and your love is brand spankin' new. Of course he wants you madly - who wouldn't? - and you're crazy about him.
But sweeties, listen to me: you don't really know this man.
And that's a big problem.
For starters--and please don't hate me for saying this--he's too young for you. Yes, I know JFK was young, too, but that was a long time ago, the world was simpler then, and anyway, Barack Obama--lovely as he is--is no Jack Kennedy.
When he pursued your nomination, JFK was a war hero. He had served six years in the U.S. House and--count em!--eight years in the U.S. Senate. Barack Obama has served seven years in the Illinois state legislature and three and a half in the U.S. Senate, one of those on the campaign trail. So please wake up and realize this man is not your first love. He may have JFK's charm, but he does not have his level of experience.
Next, you've been acting sort of like groupies lately, and it's getting embarrassing. I mean, crying and fainting when he speaks? What's that about? Are you nominating a President or the next American Idol?
Sure, Barack wants to help the disadvantaged, and students, and cares about energy independence. I hear you. Sure he gets you hot when he looks into your eyes and delivers his stirring speeches. But can he provide for and protect you and your children?
He wants to raise income taxes, social security taxes, and corporate taxes, straight across the board. That is no way to grow an economy.
And--I have to say it--the whole Jeremiah Wright incident really freaked me out.
"God damn America!?!"
Aren't you American? You can try to rationalize it away, sweeties, but that was a major dis--of YOU. And of me. And of every American, black or white, who doesn't believe that our country, for all its faults, is the Antichrist. Since when does a guy who loves you let his friends put you down?
Consider this: your sweetie Barack believes he can solve the world's problems by talking with our enemies. But over twenty years of friendship, he hasn't managed to influence his good friend and "spiritual mentor" Reverend Jeremiah Wright. How's he going to manage Iran's Mahmoud "The-Holocaust-is-a-Myth" Ahmadinejad, whom he has pledged to meet, without preconditions, in the first term of his administration?
He's already taking you for granted. He says he values you, but then he treats everyone who shlepped out to vote in Michigan and Florida like you're invisible. And forget about getting an autograph.
OK, I'm almost finished. Just let me put in a word about Hillary.
I know, I know, you've known her forever, and the newness has worn off. She's like that worn-in pantsuit you borrowed from your Mom, and what's sexy about that? But with her, you know exactly what you're getting.
She's got years of experience. Eight years in the White House advising the President. Trust me, she knows her way around.
She can talk policy till she's red, white, and blue in the face.
She cares about all of you, even those whose votes Howard Dean doesn't want to have count (Howard Dean--I warned you about that guy, too).
She would move heaven and earth to have you. You've got to admire her passion and determination! She cares about people in need around the world. But she also cares about you! She's brainy AND she's shrewd. And she gets the big picture.
She's no fan of war, but she understands that when you're dealing with terrorists like the ones targeting Iraqi civilians and our troops, kumbaya don't cut it. Back in August 2006, even before the surge, she was practically chanting, "Hey hey, ho ho, Donald Rumsfeld's got to go!" because she knew we needed a fresh approach to get our mojo back.
She understands not everyone loves you, and not everyone is nice, and sometimes having hope is not enough. This is important. Because I know you don't like to think about it, but you have enemies.
Lots of people are jealous of your beauty, freedom, and strength, and they are plotting every day to hurt you. She will protect you. Pre-9/11, Bill wasn't as vigilant as he should have been, what with all the philandering. But you don't need to worry about that with her--she's been dreaming about you her whole life, and she'll be faithful.
Wild sex appeal doesn't last. Dedication does.
Besides, from the right angle, I think she's very attractive.