Or, as Kraus would say, Two Uh-Mare-I-Kuhs. Such is the theme that John Edwards says he will continue touting in his now-official run for the 2008 Democratic nomination for the Presidency. The Sunshine Boy threw his hat in a few days ago now, giving me time in my blograstination to think a little bit more on the subject. My initial reaction was that Edwards appeared to be a little too much of an everyman in his announcement speech from the still devastated 9th Ward of New Orleans. He was either clearly or deliberately unscripted as he talked about the things he felt were necessary for a better America, casually gesturing to the neighborhood around him with a well-casted crew of young black children in the background who have helped him do clean-up work.
My initial reaction was, No, not Presidential. But over a couple of days I came to realize that it is December of 2006, not July of '08. Maybe you don't want to come on too strong, too soon. But what really got to me was the heart of the announcement. The former Senator felt it was important “to show what’s possible when we as Americans, instead of staying home and complaining, actually take action and take responsibility.” It was a bit of a shock for a Quabbiner, living some thousand miles away, to see just a glimpse of the massive amount of work that still is left down in Cajun Country, and kudos to Edwards for pointing that out to people.
You certainly don't see Dubya reminding people of their civic duty to look out for their countrymen. In fact, as an aside, our President seemed to feel that Saddam's execution was a matter of little importance to him as he slept and sent one of his employees to comment. To quote Wayne Campbell, "As if!" As if Bush didn't give a damn! The sensibility of death penalty aside, it irked me to see Bush once again display a nonchalant attitude toward a major event that, in this case, he created. The haughty and presumptuous air of expectation is verrrry un-Quabbin.
Back to Edwards. The experience thing and the looks-like-he-is-40 thing will be hurdles, but I am starting to think that there could be a turning tide for 2008, which I will discuss in more detail in some future query. A tide that is more hospitable to larvae and less so to barnacles. Plus, his facebook profile lists his two favorite activities as basketball and running, just like we do here in Quabbin Qountry.
I think it is appropriate to close with some quotations about Gerald Ford, our 38th President:
"Gerald Ford was almost alone in his understanding that there can be no healing without pardon." - Dick Cheney, Nixon apologist.
"In 1974 America didn't need a philosopher-king or a warrior-prince. We needed a healer, we needed a rock, we needed honesty and candor and courage. We needed Gerald Ford." - Dennis Hastert, backhanded complimenter.
And now we go to a time of Three living ex-presidents, which might be the fewest in our modern history. I would be interested to find out.
Rest in Peace, Gerald Ford. A football player, a sailor, a civil servant, a President. Certainly not an Arrogant Bastard, which sits in my mug as we speak.