I have had a number of interesting conversations with luminaries of varying brightness in recent times, having hung out with a colonel in the US military and ate lunch with the unforgettable Vicar of Baghdad.
The colonel didn’t tell me what he actually did, presumably because if I knew he’d have to kill me. We spent a moment or two chewing the rag about that most sacred calf, the Peace Process, and John Kerry’s part in its downfall, to misquote Spike Milligan.
The conversation turned to Presidential elections in 2016 and I ventured the suggestion that Kerry might throw his oversized hat in the ring. After, of course, he’s paid a visit to Stockholm to collect a well-deserved Nobel. My new friend was sceptical, wagering his guinea on the darling of the Left whose Washington power base would blow Kerry away like an idle wind which she regarded not.
If I were HRC, which, thankfully, I am not, I wonder how I’d set about winning the seat of Lincoln?
I think I might start out with setting up a huge national fundraising apparatus and toady up to party regulars in order to secure their loyalty. The bar bill is gonna be in excess of a billion, after all. The bad news, of course, is that this is exactly the kind of thing that would make me vulnerable to a grassroots rebellion. Put another way, in modern presidential politics, every day is Bastille Day. Blue collar Democrats, the lifeblood and mainstay of the party, are running home to mama in increasing numbers, lurching back towards their customary populist and pacifist instincts and venting their suspicion of the emerging military-digital complex, along with outright contempt for the wealthy and for conservatives generally. This opens up the field to a kind of lefty Sarah Palin emerging, who at this moment is doing nothing more than occupying a sofa in Iowa, rather than Wall Street. I would have to run against the very status quo I personify, making myself something more than the default choice of the establishment.
The current inhabitant of the White House has sent two of his best champions to do battle here, near land adjoining Armageddon, which frequently seems like a proving ground for great statesmen. Propaganda notwithstanding, the score on the ground is still fifteen-love to the Israelis and the others will be hard pressed to steal a set from them. If anybody at all could snatch a result which stands any chance of lasting and were I able to vote, and he were able to stand, I think my money would be on the man in the bow tie with a silver cross around his neck.