Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Amorphous Fight Club

Dear Gentle Reader(s), here's the conclusion to the latest stump speech delivered by Senator McCain, as partially heard on NPR and provided at Mother Jones' web site:

I know what hopelessness feels like. It's an enemy who defeats your will. I felt those things once before. I will never let them in again. I'm an American. And I choose to fight. Don't give up hope. Be strong. Have courage. And fight. Fight for a new direction for our country. Fight for what's right for America. Fight to clean up the mess of corruption, infighting and selfishness in Washington. Fight to get our economy out of the ditch and back in the lead. Fight for the ideals and character of a free people. Fight for our children's future. Fight for justice and opportunity for all. Stand up to defend our country from its enemies. Stand up, stand up, stand up and fight. America is worth fighting for. Nothing is inevitable here. We never give up. We never quit. We never hide from history. We make history.

Excellent words, eh wot?

The problem with them is that they are practically irrelevant.  They, in today's political and financial contexts, are amorphous. 

First of all, while having been a prisoner of war has certainly earned the Senator a debt from his country, it is not a debt that demands the presidency.

Second, the question of whom or what is unstated and certainly unanswered.  Whom is it we are fighting?  What, exactly, is the goal?  What is the strategy?  What are the tactics?

Presidential candidates are able only to make amorphous promises.  They have no power.  They are not prescient.  But they certainly can take present situations and make educated guesses about what might be the situation against what is to be fought.  The good Senator has not done that.

McCain comes from a long line of warriors.  He knows the warrior talk.  His war battle experiences do not contain evidence of his knowledge of the warrior walk which is needed for Commander-in-Chief.

Trust, but verify.


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