Monday, August 25, 2008

Hot and Flaky

So it is finished. Barack Obama has gone ahead and made the most consequential decision of his relatively brief political career. As I have considered Obama's selection of Joe Biden as his running mate, I have done so in consideration of a very good thoughtpiece published at American Thinker. J.R. Dunn suggests that Obama's quest for the White House will be undone by the fact that he is, as Dunn puts it, a "flake."

I'm using the term in its generally accepted sense. A flake is not only a screwup, but someone who truly excels in making bizarre errors and creating incredibly convoluted disasters. A flake is a "fool with energy", as the Russian proverb puts it. ("A fool is a terrible thing to have around, but a fool with energy is a nightmare".)

Barack Obama is a flake, and the American people have begun to see it. The chief characteristic of a flake is that he makes choices that are impossible to either understand or explain. These are not the errors of the poor dope who can't grasp the essentials of a situation, or the neurotic who ruins things out of compulsion, or the man suffering chronic bad luck.

The flake has a genius for discovering solutions at perfect right angles to the ordinary world. It's as if he's the product of a totally different evolutionary chain, in a universe where the laws are slightly but distinctly at variance to ours. When given a choice between left and right, the flake goes up -- if not through the 8th dimension. And although there's plenty of rationalization, there's never a logical reason for any of it. After awhile, people stop asking.
Among other things, Dunn cites Obama's lack of scholarly output while editor of the Harvard Law Review, his long association with Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. and Trinity United Church of Christ as well as his sketchy voting record while in the Illinois Senate as evidence of Obama's pattern of succeeding by "stepping into every last manhole and open trapdoor in his path."

So how does his veep pick fair on the "flake-o-meter"? Admittedly, Obama did not have a lot of good choices that would have passed muster with both the moonbats who will be roosting in Denver this week and the American public more generally. But according to Rasmussen Reports, the early returns on Biden are not encouraging.

On the day that Barack Obama announced Joe Biden as his running mate, 39% of voters said he made the right choice. A Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found that 25% disagreed and another 35% are not sure.

Women are notably less enthusiastic than men—33% of women say Biden was the right choice while 27% disagreed. Men, by a 46% to 24% margin, said that Obama made the right choice.
So a key demographic is already less than enthused with Obama's running mate. Maybe women, particularly female Democrats, are still smarting over the fact that Hillary Clinton was not even seriously considered - let alone selected - for the number two position. Yet while Obama snubs Clinton (and Clinton) on the one hand, he intends to give Clinton (and Clinton) center stage during two nights at his convention. (Mind you, this is the man who wants to be our chief negotiator with Russia, Iran, North Korea and the Chinese.)

It would all seem a bit less, well, flaky if he had selected someone who could add to his strengths and shore up his deficits. By choosing Biden, Obama simply reminds us of what a lightweight he is in so many areas, while bringing nothing new to the table electorally. To strain a metaphor, any voters that Biden brings to the table were already in the dining room waiting to sit down anyway.

All of this will add up to one hot, flaky mess inn Denver (and beyond) and may well be contributing to the erosion of Barack Obama's once formidable Electoral College lead. In any event, it will be fun to watch.

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