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April 21, 2008

Duos To The Death


Since Sunday, I’ve been thinking about the significance of this image.  I’ve also been wondering (skeptically) about the accompanying NYT Week In Review piece, titled: “Gore-Lieberman: A Hyphen Apart? Try Poles.”

The thing is, the article is about nothing.  At least nothing timely.  Essentially, the piece is an out-of-the-blue musing about what might of been had Gore won in 2000.  Specifically, it assumes that Lieberman a.) would have kept any proclivities toward invading Iraq to himself, b.) wouldn’t have created all that Senate drama straddling the fence between Repubs and Dems, c.) certainly wouldn’t be out there today stumping for McNasty, and d.) surely wouldn’t be in the mix as a possible ‘08 GOP Veep pick.

Still, I think the pic, as free floating as it is, has more resonance as it relates to the current Democratic race.  If you think of Clinton and Obama as interchangeable Democratic standard bearers (and not just as finalists, but also oft-mentioned partners in a “dream ticket”), the article, and this photo, puts on the table how this previous duo (even if they weren’t campaign rivals) completely blew apart.  (As the article notes, “The two men barely speak.”)

I don’t like this photo for the same reason I can’t stand where the Obama – Clinton slugfest is heading.  One player is hopeful while the other looks bitter, and everybody has to have their own balloon.

Gore-Lieberman: A Hyphen Apart? Try Poles (NYT)

(image: Jim Bourg/Reuters, via Corbis. 2000. La Crosse, Wisconsin.  via

  • black dog barking

    The Connecticut For Lieberman Party standard bearer has an uncanny knack for finding his way to the head of the parade. The arc of his political career this century suggests that modern politics is an arena where failure carries no liability. One of the two men in that photo will go on to win an Emmy, an Cscar, and the Nobel Peace Prize. He is the political “loser”. The other will get laughed out the 2004 Democratic primaries (Joementum!!), turned out by Democratic voters when challenged in the 2006 primary for his senate seat, and now finds himself stumping for another 2000 has been, back on the campaign trail he apparently loves so dearly. Still second fiddle, not that he likes it but it’s the best he can do.
    For some reason the apparent pique in Sen Lieberman’s expression synapsed a bit of Milton for me:

    So farewell hope, and with hope, farewell fear,
    Farewell remorse! All good to me is lost;

    The speaker has chosen to be a divider, not a uniter. Of course, to be a winner that’s not how one promotes one’s ambitions. Quite the opposite, in fact, as we all know now.
    McCain / Lieberman 2008, now there’s a dream ticket in a David Lynch Twin Peaks sense of dreaming. All it needs is a strobe light and a dancing midget. And a cuppa Joe.

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