Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Obama Will Not Do a Koizumi

I’ve been watching the New Hampshire primary and am very surprised to see Hillary Clinton doing so well. Apparently, the media did such a good job of putting her down overall and being awed and inspired by Barack Obama that my brain stopped waiting till the facts actually came in. As of this moment, Mrs. Clinton’s lead is fairly slim in the reported vote count and the result could go the other way. That does not really matter for the primaries and caucuses, since Mrs. Clinton has already shown here that she can carry the party faithful. That should keep the money flowing and her extended team on the wagon.

So regardless of the ultimate outcome, the chances of Mr. Obama doing a Koizumi and taking a groundswell of grassroots support (if, as in Koizumi’s case, partly the perception thereof) to force the party leadership and people riding on the Clinton machine to back him have fallen precipitously. Now, all Mrs. Clinton has to do, other than continue to work like hell, until the February 5 Super Duper Tuesday bash is pray that John Edwards does not drop out any time soon.

McCain vs. Clinton, if I were a betting man. Amazing how the success - militarily - of the troop surge in Iraq is working out. Now if only anyone had a plan to avoid an all-out civil war in Iraq without a substantial and permanent U.S. presence there…

ADD: Boy, talk about a short shelflife


The Col. said...

One expert told me that part of the reason the polls were wrong was due to survey leakage. That is, people lied to the pollsters. They told them what the media wanted to hear: that they were supporting Obama. When they actually voted though, they voted for someone else. It's a subtle racism. This is one of Obama's greatest challenges going forward.

Anonymous said...

i hope that obama will not win, he has no serious projects just his "change"... he will tourn out like Sarkozy(french president )jetsetting around the world partying with millionaires,..

clinton has much more political comptetence

Jun Okumura said...

the col.:

Thanks for the information. I’m sure there must have been some of that, but it also begs the question: Why didn’t it happen in Iowa? Are Iowans more honest than New Hampshirites?

I’m guessing that the main reason, lying or not, was that many women (and some men) felt that Hillary was being treated unfairly by the media, particularly after her devastating Iowa loss, and the kaffeeklatch moment of emotion crystallized that sentiment. Read this story, for instance. More broadly, you can sense the underlying sense of unfairness in flashes from groups of women, professional women who’ll never knowingly show their resentment, when talk turns to a gender-related issue. As I said, some men as well were angry; read this. Note that, not incidentally, they both use the word "witch", a word that evokes "witch hunt" and rhymes with "bitch", in describing the media's actions.

I don’t watch much TV, much less have the opportunity to access U.S. broadcasting networks, so I missed most of the coverage, but if these two articles are any indication, there seems to have been a feeding frenzy on Mrs. Clinton.


I don’t have a vote in this, but I’m sure that Michelle Obama will not tolerate any of that nonsense. Incidentally, as genuinely likeable as Mr. Obama appears to be, I think that he, like the other major candidates in both parties, has a streak of intimate ruthlessness that people like George Bush and John Kerry (and Richard Nixon, I think) don’t have. I think that it’s a good thing, when you’re running something big, like a business, or an administration, and have to delegate authority to people, some of whom you may or may not like. On the other hand, it could be a little uncomfortable living next to these people, day after day, year after year. And no, I definitely would not want to live next door to M. Sarkozy.

Anonymous said...

You didn't discuss the possibility that vote fraud is the biggest issue. Computers are especially dubious. After all, the exit polls showed Obama doing much better, too.

Jun Okumura said...


I am aware that vote fraud has been raised as a possibility. However I disagree with you as to its magnitude as an issue. Perhaps the fact that it was raised most prominently by Dennis Kucinich had something to with the lack of seriousness in its treatment by the media.

I do not cover U.S. politics with any degree of thoroughness, though, so I would be happy to look into any evidence that is properly sourced independent of the echo chamber of anonymous posts and comments on blogs and in chatrooms. If you can point me to good articles that explore the difference between exit polls and the actual results (I recall something like that happening at the 2004 presidential election), I would be much obliged.