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The presidential race in America is turning out to be much more interesting than expected. At the time of writing, the Democratic nomination is not quite wrapped up — but Hillary Clinton is on the ropes and Barack Obama is the all-but-certain nominee. Unless something drastic happens, it is he who will slug for the Democrats against the Republicans’ John McCain in the general election.

It was not supposed to be this way. Mrs Clinton, wife of the former president and senator from New York, was supposed to waltz to the nomination. It was hers for the asking. She was a great heroine of the Democratic party, their Joan of Arc. But, in the course of her waltz, a young senator from ­Illinois cut in.

He had had very little experience: after a stint in the Illinois legislature, he was elected to the US Senate in 2004. Yet many wanted him to be president. He inspired them with his rhetoric — gassy words about “hope” and “change” — and he was black, or half black. Many Americans long for a president “of colour” to help wipe away the stains of the past.

Philosophically, there is very little difference between Senators Obama and Clinton. They are both statists, central planners, proponents of Big Government. In Europe they would belong to one of the socialist camps. But American political taxonomy is a little strange: however illiberal they may be, they are called “liberals”.

Mrs Clinton comes from the Sixties’ Left; Obama, at 46, is younger than that, but he might as well have sprung from there too. His politics are warmed-up McGovernism (I refer to 1972’s Democratic presidential nominee, George McGovern). There is nothing interesting about Obama’s politics: nothing unorthodox, nothing innovative, no enticing deviation.

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Tony Papafilis
June 4th, 2008
7:06 AM
Obama started out presenting as the black man that is beyond race politics. The charade has been exposed and he is now rightly seen as another Jesse Jackson, albeit a smoother version. Obama defends the Reverend because he can "understand" black anger yet can't understand why an elderly white woman (his grandmother) is intimidated by a group of aggresive young black men walking towards her. Doesn't he read the papers or watch the news to see the prevalance of black crime. He has not said anything against the racial political myths that allow black squalor to continue. Obama denies his white heritage except when it suits. He is not a black American but a black Kenyan with a white American mother yet talks of black Americans as his people - does it mean his mother's people are not his people? How racist! Obama is not a post-racial candidate but a Manchurian Candidate. Bring on Bill Crosby if you want a black President that is beyond race politics.

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