God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen - Jars of Clay - listen now

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


I posted yesterday about the end of the honeymoon between conservatives and the Bush administration. I also talked about the reasons I voted for Bush even though I knew that he wasn't a true conservative. To further that discussion, and to give the Democrats some equal time, here's a good article by Tod Lindberg of the Washington Times: Myths of the Democratic Party. It does a good job of laying out some of the thought process I went through while trying to find a reason to vote for John Kerry. I definitely think it should be required reading at the DNC, but I doubt Howard Deaniac would be able to follow the subtlety.

Moreover, no less important than "issues" are the character traits people associate with candidates. The authors say voters ask three main questions about candidates apart from where they stand on the issues: Is "the candidate a person of strength?... of integrity?... of empathy?" For the first category, at issue is the matter of core conviction and the ability to persist through challenges and adversity. For the second, it's a sense of straight-shooting and the consistency of words and deeds. For the third, it's the sense of the candidate as someone like you, not aloof from you. [ed. note: Kerry displayed none of the three characteristics. He was wishy washy instead of strong in his convictions, he waffled as the polling numbers changed rather than staying on a consistent message, and he is the very model of an aloof blue-blood.]

The recommendations follow accordingly: The party needs a candidate with real credibility on national security, whose convictions on social issues are accompanied by a spirit of tolerance, and who embodies those big-three characteristics of strength, integrity and empathy.

The problem for Democrats is that the man who best fills this bill is Sen. John McCain. And he's a Republican who, notwithstanding his maverick reputation, still has a better shot at winning his party's nomination than his Democratic doppelganger, if indeed there is such a one, has of winning the Democratic nomination.


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