Friday, February 15, 2008

Obama Voters Losing Touch with Reality

So says Charles Krauthammer. I know Krauthammer wouldn’t agree with a Democrat on the color of the sky, but he makes a solid point and quotes plenty of others who are becoming concerned about the near-messianic fervor surrounding the freshman senator.

I’m not as quick as others to dismiss Obama as all rhetoric and no plans (he has plenty of plans, they’re just hard to see under the glare of his hope rhetoric). But the adulation of his supporters is beginning to border on, well, crazy. And that’s worrisome.

If you’re not a true believer, the genuflections of the faithful can be very off-putting. I never got on board with Howard Dean because his followers were too blindly reverential. Ron Paul’s positions were almost less of a detriment to his campaign as were the disturbingly passionate outbursts from the Paulites.

Obamamania hasn’t reached that level of weird yet. But his admirers are exhibiting symptoms. The “Yes we Can” video and the hosannas it received were a little creepy. Certainly there must be reasons to support Obama other than the fact that he’s Obama. “Hope” is not a policy position. And yet that seems to be the driving energy behind his support.

Should Obama wrap up the nomination, which looks like a decent bet, his national campaign will need to reach beyond the already baptized members of his congregation. Then again, maybe his blend of common Democratic positions with uncommon rhetoric is enough to win him the presidency. If he can keep that balance between excited support and irrational fervor, then he has a very good chance at ultimate victory. But if his followers slip into crazyland, the campaign will have a hard time winning over more skeptical voters.

For what it’s worth, I think beneath the admittedly inspiring rhetoric, there is a man who could potentially make a good president. I just hope, if the nation elects him, his supporters vote for the real man and not the mythic figure he’s already becoming.

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Blogger amba said...

Whew. Thanks.

6:54 PM  

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