I admire Barack Obama and John Edwards as well. And I am sorry to see Dennis Kucinich bow out. The Democrats this year have a wealth of choices. Clinton, Obama and Edwards would all make great candidates. But I can see the logic of the New York Times’ choice: a vote for experience.
The Republicans also can’t be written off if they nominate an independent-thinking proven war hero like John McCain.
More than national reconciliation what America needs today is a leader with the courage to help the economy by government intervention if necessary. A leader in the mould of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. He was never a consensus candidate, but he more than any other leader made America great.
America today faces huge problems. The war on terror is only a sideshow to a greater struggle to protect American jobs, American people, American institutions — and indeed the world as we have known it — from emerging forces which no matter how benign — and that’s open to question — could change the world irrevocably.
Of course, America has unleashed terrible destruction too, in Vietnam, in Iraq.
But America also stands for democracy, freedom of expression, freedom of choice, indeed the American Dream. Look at Bill Clinton,Edwards,Obama. They all rose from modest backgrounds unlike so many other leaders around the world. See how Obama’s supporters include blacks and whites alike.Think of the American culture of giving — to their favourite causes, their alma maters, the scholarships and charities they have endowed. The world’s greatest donors, richest colleges are American. America is a great country. Or it would not have drawn immigrants from around the world. Immigrants who have assimilated and are proud to call themselves Americans.
That is why America is worth saving from the problems besieging it. Hillary Clinton is a Democrat prepared to use government intervention if necessary to help the economy and the middle class. She said as much before she had her tiff with Obama at their latest debate. Edwards’ populism leaves no doubt about where he stands with the people. Obama, of course, is loved by the people. They would all make great presidents. Any two of them could make up a dream ticket. On the Republican side, of course, McCain has been a heroic figure for a long time. One remembers the excitement he caused on his first Straight Talk Express campaign.