Most people aren’t cute when they’re mad, and hatred in the political arena isn’t just ugly–it’s ineffective.
Here are two interesting pieces about hatred and politics:
John Podhoretz suggests that the report that the 9/11 commission will issue momentarily won’t hurt the administration because the partisans on the commission unwisely let their hatred show too plainly:
“Had the Democrats on the commission kept their mouths shut and their hearings bland, their report could have damaged the administration beyond salvage,” writes Podhoretz. “Had they bided their time and behaved with sober restraint, the commission’s very partisan Dems could have helped John Kerry beyond his and their wildest dreams.”
Washington Times columnist Tod Lindberg says that a campaign that starts from the notion that everybody in America loathes and despises George Bush may have the wrong premise:
“Most Americans like Mr. Bush and respect him for the way he has handled some very difficult challenges,” writes Lindberg. “My guess is that you would do better against him starting from that premise rather than starting from the premise that Mr. Bush is a thoroughly and irredeemably odious figure who could only be admired by a) people as odious as he and b) people who have been duped into a state of false consciousness by Mr. Bush’s odious lies.
“Don’t get me wrong: You can run whatever kind of campaign you want, including one that drips contempt for everything having to do with the president of the United States. You can even demand of the American people, ’Where’s the outrage?’ You have that right. I’m just saying that I have seen that sort of approach before, and I don’t think it works very well.”