Friday, January 25, 2008

To Hillary or not to Hillary? That is the question

I know that in a fit of pique caused by Britney Spears and her media troubles, I declared that I was voting for Hillary Clinton and that every woman should do so as well. It seems like a tenuous connection but it isn't. Women simply have it tougher than men in the public arena. And I'm sick of it.
But I'm still torn, and even more so after reading this enlightening, yet not very helpful article by the wonderful George Packer in the New Yorker. It's a tough choice between someone who inspires (Obama) and who claims change (whatever that means) and who is fresh, and someone who is perhaps more experienced, but maybe also unfortunately more vulnerable to attack, like Hillary.
The portrait that emerges from Packer's article tries to be even handed, but in essence he is saying her major Achilles heel is she comes across as more duplicitous that she actually is, more hungry for power, less candid and charming and human than she is in person. Her tendency towards personal paranoia and control has not helped her in the past. I certainly hope her aides read the article and tinker accordingly.
This is what I wonder: will the Republicans hold their punches in either case, because one is a Black man and the other one is a woman? Or does it not matter to them one way or another? With her it seems they have not only not been holding their punches, but quite the contrary. She seems to bring out the worst in them. They loathe her. (And they loathe her husband).
Will it be harder to try to destroy Obama? Not only for the obvious reason of his race, let's face it, but because he has young children, he is young, and he seems undestroyable right now.
I think Obama is great presidential material, but my dilemma is, will he be a great president now? Perhaps now is the best time, after the worst presidency in the history of this country, someone like him could be just what we need to pick our beleaguered souls off the floor. But he needs to come up with the goods. Great oratorial prowess and fantastic rhetoric and endless charisma are very helpful, but they can only go so far. This country is in deep shit. We need someone who will clean it up a bit.
In short: I don't know what to do. Eeny meeny miny mo...

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