We could put just about anyone in politics in that category, and certainly those of us who cover the campaigns.
Case in point: Mike Huckabee has a new commercial out that features an endorsement by super-macho symbol Chuck Norris.
But now we find out that Giuliani is buying some ads in the state, and is going to put some effort into the race there. So now what? What does this do to his claim to be the underdog? If he does well, can he still claim it was better than expected. Can he raise expectations and still credibly win the Expectations Game? What should the expectations be?
It is a disgrace and a sham and a disrespect not only to those candidates but to the very idea of an informed citizenry choosing our next leader in a democratic election.
I watched the debate because I wanted to see what each of the candidates would do as president … How they would lead the country. I heard that from most of the candidates. Joe Biden and Bill Richardson were particularly strong. But, unfortunately, at least in the beginning of the debate, all I heard from John Edwards and Barack Obama was more sniping at Hillary Clinton. And, frankly, I’m getting sick of it.
That will wake up Fred Thompson — a Washington Post editorial headlined “Two Cheers for Mr. Thompson.” Yes, that is the Post I am talking about and not the Washington Times. Thompson is getting cheers for proposing reforms to the Social Security system that editors there say aren’t as progressive as they would like but they say he deserves applause for making tough choices the other candidates so far refuse to.
Thompson wants to cut benefits, combine private accounts with federal matching funds, and link benefits to the cost-of-living increase rather than wage growth. In my column this week about Big Fred I gave him credit for his policy proposals, and note that despite his seeming indifference over this whole running-for-highest-office exercise, he is no lightweight. It’s hard to figure what Fred is doing in the race and why but it sure is interesting to watch him.
What do you think Fred wants? Please join me for my weekly Q&A video posts by sending useful, interesting and entertaining questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I met Norman Mailer once. When I was a very young man I was with a group of people he knew when he strutted into the room and invited his friends to join him for a beverage. I got swept with the crowd to the bar, too young to legally drink, and too drunk to remember much of what was said.
I do remember one thing. I paraphrase for lack of clarity due to intoxication, but this is a fair representation of what he said:
As everyone knows, one sound bite determines the winner of any presidential debate. It's the one and only moment that anyone remembers ... Reagan's "There you go again," Lloyd Bentsen telling Dan Quayle he was no John F. Kennedy.
Mark Penn is running the call as usual. He's been up all night analyzing the microtrends, whatever the hell they are, and now it's time to consolidate all the polling information and script Hillary's spontaneous response when the other Democrats attack her during tonight's CNN debate.