Bob Franken


July 27, 2007
Politics of Crankiness (Bob Franken)
@ 11:16 am
First of all, you’ve gotta give Hillary’s advisers some credit here. Whether it’s fair or not, the female candidate has to show the world she can stand her ground with all the nasty guys, foreign and domestic.

So at the same time, she is duking it out with —

* The aggressive Pentagon policy chief, Eric Edelman, who called her demands to know of troop withdrawal planning a boost for “enemy propaganda.” Clearly she’s winning that fight. The defense secretary himself has been falling over himself to smooth things over, sending Clinton a letter that is apologetic almost to the point of groveling.

* Barack Obama. The twaddle has been shaking non-stop in the political world over Obama’s answer to the YouTuber who wanted to know whether as president he’d sit down and negotiate with the heads of adversarial countries. He said he would, and she jumped all over him.

The name-calling has continued since then. Frankly, if I was one of those foreign leaders, there’s no way in the world I’d be willing to get anywhere near her — too dangerous.

But my question will almost certainly get me drummed out of the punditocracy: WHO CARES? I mean, come on: Does anyone think that out there in the real world, real people are stopping strangers on the street for the latest on this bickering? I don’t think so.

There are questions for the candidates that Americans consider far more pressing. To name a few:

* As president, would you pardon Lindsay Lohan? Clinton would probably say she’d need to check with her husband about pardons. Obama would respond, “It’s time for a change”

* As president, would you continue to enforce the prohibition against wearing flip-flops in the White House? If so, would you grant an exception to John Kerry? Congressman Kucinich will take that one, insisting he would not allow anyone in the White House who was wearing anything BUT flip-flops.

Go ahead, belittle those questions. But before you do, let’s quote candidate Clinton about the more substantive debate: “This is getting kind of silly.”

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