Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Sometimes I think the Iraqi information minister is working for Dennis Kucinich. From Kucinich's web site:

    The media had long ago predicted the winner of the entire process and even the loser of the general election, and tonight's caucuses have the pundits scratching their collective scalps in bewilderment. I moved from ninth place to fifth and won delegates despite the 15 percent threshold.

Kucinich moved from ninth place to fifth after 1) Clark and Lieberman decided to pass on competing in Iowa, bringing Kucinich up to seventh, and 2) Braun decided that her black Jewish female ninja strategery wasn't working and withdrew from the campaign to endorse Crazy Howard Dean Head Man, bringing Kucinich up to sixth. None of these events are ones that Kucinich had anything whatsoever to do with. Then he beat Al Sharpton in a state many of whose residents have heard of these "black people" and seen them on the UPN on the TV but aren't really sure the whole thing isn't made up by some syndicate back East, bringing him to fifth.

I think candidates like Kucinich have a role to play in the nominating process, and as Michael Lewis noted in his terrific book about the 1996 campaign, Trail Fever, it's often these candidates who are the ones who can say interesting and provocative things because they're not interested in electability as much as they are in saying what they have to say. Which is terrific for everyone. But when a candidate whose big claim is straight talk and saying what he means no matter the consequences then starts spinning on a "no infidels in Baghdad" level, it's just depressing and annoying to watch.

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