Sometimes – history needs a push

I’ve come to the conclusion that at least until the primary season is over, I might as well abandon any pretense that this blog will deal with issues other than politics.

There are, of course, myriad academic library topics that I could be addressing; but for the time being, I plan to leave my professional observations and discussions at the workplace.

So much has changed since the primaries in Iowa and New Hampshire. Hillary’s stumble in Iowa was reversed, and once again the neoliberal DLC juggernaut was back on track.

On the GOP side, the contenders were essentially winnowed down to McCain and Romney – with Huckabee and Giuliani remaining in the race to sop up the extreme Jesusland and Gwotnik fringes of the Republicans’ toxic coalition.

Among the most interesting developments of the past few weeks, however, was the MSM’s brief spell of faux schadenfreude over Hillary’s setback in Iowa. Given the way that they had previously all but anointed her as the nominee throughout 2007, it seemed a minor correction – a flexible tack towards a more critical / skeptical tone – most likely with an eye on the media market value of a bit of political kerfuffle.

Hillary’s ‘Oprah moment’ in New Hampshire was clearly the climax of this manufactured psychodrama. So, Hillary is lobbed a softball queue by what must surely have been a campaign plant, and presto! – the DLC’s Iron Lady melted our hearts by revealing her inner Gena Davis.

That this would play well in the Disneyesque bubble of televisionland is not surprising. What was a bit unsettling, though, was that some otherwise sensible left-liberals bought into this schtick. A typical example was Katha Pollitt, writing in her blog at The Nation.

The conceit seems to be that since Chris Matthews is a thoughtless misogynist, then all liberal or leftist men who criticize Hillary in terms that could be construed as gendered are similarly mired in sexism.

The silliness of this argument should be self-evident, and therefore will not detain us here. Those who are still interested can see the offending remarks here:

Interestingly, though, Hillary’s fortunes have begun to look more dubious in the wake of Obama’s landslide in South Carolina. Taken together with Bill’s nasty attacks on Obama (which apparently triggered the Kennedys’ spectacular tilt towards Obama) these events have actually injected some real excitement into what is typically the quadrennial yawn-fest of Democratic Party politics.

Stay tuned for the results of the non-primary in Florida.

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