Isn't it awfully condescending, after all, to assume your adherents will swallow alarmist claims already shot down (e.g., that Obama consorts with terrorists, will "raise your taxes")? Or that a multimillionaire whose upscale economic plan defies the laws of mathematics can presume to channel the "heartland"? Or that a guy who can barely hold his campaign together could seem a wise and disciplined leader? McCain says he's not Bush, whose disdain for the intelligence of the American public went from an insult to an actual destructive force. Maybe, but McCain's scorn and fear-mongering are still too close for comfort.
Obama's issues and party are mine. I don't believe he heralds a "new politics"; everything suggests he's calculating, ingratiating, and a deft networker. I happen to think these are useful qualities for leadership on the world stage. When cornered on an abstract issue (race, abortion), he responds in nuanced and evenhanded terms. This impulse feels new to political life. Or, at least, long-lost. At such moments, there's simply no comparison between him and McCain, an old soldier cowed by his party leadership, or Sarah Palin, a local pol who croons talking points in summer-stock diction. Obama doesn't seem like someone out to fool me.