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View Diary: Why I stay loyal to Kerry (186 comments)

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  •  Kerry and Elitism (4.00)
    But first:

    It will be interesting, and heartening, to see his evolution from an establishment Republicrat to a true populist over the next several years.

    If this happens, it is because he does not intend to run for president again. This would give him considerable freedom to do what he thinks needs to be done without worry about how it will play out in 30-second GOP ads four years from now.

    But I digress. Much has been said about Kerry's aristocratic bearing and how it fails to connect with "just plain folks" the way Bush does. All of that is true, but it completely misses the point. "Just plain folks" don't have what it takes to become President of the United States. You don't just wake up one morning, even with a fortune (ahem, Forbes and Perot), and get yourself elected president. Aside from time and effort and single-minded devotion, it takes a whole battery of character traits that "just plain folks" don't have. Even crappy presidents are extraordinary people in at least a narrow range of characteristics.

    The corollary to this observation, which no one ever seems to come right out and say when some pseudo-bumpkin like Bush is running, is that any serious contender for the White House who claims to be "just plain folks" is a fraud. I don't want a fraud in the Oval Office. And even if it were possible, I wouldn't want Joe Ordinary in the position, either.

    C'mon, look around you. If your neighborhood is anything like mine, there probably aren't very many of your just plain folks neighbors you'd want to hand control of ten thousand ICBMs to. Or the ability to appoint Supreme Court justices. Even the more likeable ones lack the judgment and experience in most cases.

    Rather than encourage our candidates to construct phony personas, our energy would be better spent pointing out how fraudulent the Republican Joe Average act is.

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