June 08, 2008

One Of The Boys

There's a slightly pitiful and rather revealing full page of short opinion pieces from pundits and supporters on What Went Wrong for Hillary Clinton in today's NYT opinion section. There's the usual claustrophobic mixture of self-pity and delusion occasionally leavened with a bit of insight, but the overall tone from her supporters is still a mixture of denial and "we wuz robbed!", a sort of nascent "if you can't be a victor, be a victim!" mentality (it's still all about Hillary, isn't it?).

The sad truth for her supporters, though, is that she didn't just lose — Obama won, and won because to so many of us he looked like the future, and she looked like the past. Voting for the past works for a lot of voters, for sure, but that past ensured she lost in part because she was One Of The (Old) Boys, a well-connected Establishment figure who in every sense could only offer up just more of the same while going on and on about her outsider status and fresh approach (i.e. the same old same old). Even the tenacious self-pity of her supporters feels traditional.

Maybe a blast from the past is what it takes to win the presidency against that other blast from the past, John McCain; I don't know. We may never find out; but we're unlikely to ever hear the end of the second guessing from across the great divide….

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