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The Problem Isn't Just McCain Valentines for McCain

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Obama in the Driver's Seat?

by Christopher Chantrill
February 13, 2008 at 1:57 pm

AFTER SENATOR Barack Obama convincingly won the Potomac Primary yesterday, is it time to start selling tickets to the Fall of the House of Clinton, as some wags call it?

Or have the reports of their death been grossly exaggerated?

RealClearPolitics’ resident political scientist and number-cruncher Jay Cost says: wait a minute, chaps. Take it easy with the claims of Obama momentum and inevitability.

Clinton’s losses in the contests are as explicable as any of her losses before or on Super Tuesday. Obama has systematically won states that play to his particular strengths since the Iowa caucus. So has Clinton. Her problem has been that she has not had any good states in the last week.

Of course, he says, there may indeed be momentum kicking in for Obama. It’s just that, given the data, the momentum effect is presently “undetectable.”

Cost analyzes the demographics of the upcoming states and reckons that the advantages for each candidate come out as a wash.

All in all, this implies a rough parity from here until the end of the primary season. Approximately speaking, neither candidate seems to have an advantage in the remaining contests. So, my suggestion to readers is not to get caught up in the "Obama is inevitable" storyline. Minimally, we should all remember how well the "Clinton is inevitable" storyline worked out five months ago!

But for those of us who are not Democrats the spectacle of the Democratic Party tying itself up in knots over race and gender is long overdue poetic justice. (See Maureen Dowd)

As it says in the Bible: Those who live by identity politics will die by identity politics.

At least, it would have said that if modern identity politics had been invented back then.

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Christopher Chantrill blogs at www.roadtothemiddleclass.com.  His Road to the Middle Class is forthcoming.


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Chappies

“But I saw a man yesterday who knows a fellow who had it from a chappie that said that Urquhart had been dipping himself a bit recklessly off the deep end.”  —Freddy Arbuthnot
Dorothy L. Sayers, Strong Poison


Civil Society

“Civil Society”—a complex welter of intermediate institutions, including businesses, voluntary associations, educational institutions, clubs, unions, media, charities, and churches—builds, in turn, on the family, the primary instrument by which people are socialized into their culture and given the skills that allow them to live in broader society and through which the values and knowledge of that society are transmitted across the generations.
Francis Fukuyama, Trust


Hugo on Genius

“Tear down theory, poetic systems... No more rules, no more models... Genius conjures up rather than learns... ” —Victor Hugo
César Graña, Bohemian versus Bourgeois


Education

“We have met with families in which for weeks together, not an article of sustenance but potatoes had been used; yet for every child the hard-earned sum was provided to send them to school.”
E. G. West, Education and the State


Faith & Purpose

“When we began first to preach these things, the people appeared as awakened from the sleep of ages—they seemed to see for the first time that they were responsible beings, and that a refusal to use the means appointed was a damning sin.”
Finke, Stark, The Churching of America, 1776-1990


Conversion

“When we received Christ,” Phil added, “all of a sudden we now had a rule book to go by, and when we had problems the preacher was right there to give us the answers.”
James M. Ault, Jr., Spirit and Flesh


Postmodernism

A writer who says that there are no truths, or that all truth is ’merely relative’, is asking you not to believe him. So don’t.
Roger Scruton, Modern Philosophy


Faith and Politics

As far as the Catholic Church is concerned, the principal focus of her interventions in the public arena is the protection and promotion of the dignity of the person, and she is thereby consciously drawing particular attention to principles which are not negotiable... [1.] protection of life in all its stages, from the first moment of conception until natural death; [2.] recognition and promotion of the natural structure of the family... [3.] the protection of the right of parents to educate their children.
Pope Benedict XVI, Speech to European Peoples Party, 2006


China and Christianity

At first, we thought [the power of the West] was because you had more powerful guns than we had. Then we thought it was because you had the best political system. Next we focused on your economic system. But in the past twenty years, we have realized that the heart of your culture is your religion: Christianity.
David Aikman, Jesus in Beijing


Religion, Property, and Family

But the only religions that have survived are those which support property and the family. Thus the outlook for communism, which is both anti-property and anti-family, (and also anti-religion), is not promising.
F.A. Hayek, The Fatal Conceit


Conservatism

Conservatism is the philosophy of society. Its ethic is fraternity and its characteristic is authority — the non-coercive social persuasion which operates in a family or a community. It says ‘we should...’.
Danny Kruger, On Fraternity


US Life in 1842

Families helped each other putting up homes and barns. Together, they built churches, schools, and common civic buildings. They collaborated to build roads and bridges. They took pride in being free persons, independent, and self-reliant; but the texture of their lives was cooperative and fraternal.
Michael Novak, The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism


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©2007 Christopher Chantrill