In the strange world of political punditry you run into a lot of arguments that are specious, twisted, and sometimes downright dishonest. That’s true of both sides, and probably equally so. And then there are the columns and blogs that just sound plain bizarre. Such is the line of thought advanced by Bob Beckel, former manager of Walter Mondale’s presidential campaign, who was last seen filling out a job application at Burger King in November 1984.
Apparently, the years have not been good to Mr. Beckel. There have, no doubt, been one too many doors shut in his face. One too many sleepless nights staring at the bare wall of a studio apartment, with nothing but stale pizza in the fridge and a goldfish to keep him company. One too many pot brownies to chase away the pain. (I’m kidding, of course. He works for Fox News and writes a column for USA Today.)
Perhaps all this explains why a once feared political strategist (snicker) is now writing a column suggesting that Barack Obama’s best chance at winning this election is to put on a sleeveless vest and fishing cap and portray himself … as Barack the Cable Guy. No, I’m not even making that up:
Barack Obama is about process not ideology. He’s Larry the Cable Guy but with a Harvard education and a towering intellect. As Larry is fond of saying “you gotta do what it takes to get ‘er done”, and Obama will do just that as president. Good for him. Good for the country. It’s not complicated, and it should come as no surprise. It is exactly what Barrack Obama has done his entire adult life, but for some reason most people either don’t get it, don’t believe it, or chose to deny it.
It’s not as if Obama has been keeping this post 20th century governing process a secret. He’s written two books laying out his approach and he has left a trail of evidence to support the contention that he is the new political Cable Guy.
Beckel goes on to give several examples of how Barack Obama, throughout his career, has adhered to the pragmatic political philosophy of “Git ‘er Done.” Seriously, read the whole thing if you don’t believe it. Now I like Larry the Cable Guy as much as the next redneck, but I never really considered him presidential material. Then again, maybe I’m wrong: