On the Opinion Page: March 23, 2008


In which The Gay Recluse scores selected opinion pieces in The Times.

Frank Rich/The Republican Resurrection

The Short Version: 1) Obama’s the man; 2) Clinton’s a monster, 3) McCain is loving it.

In his words: “Instead of enhancing her own case for the presidency, she’s going to tear him down.”

Score: B (Bit much)
In part one of his column, Rich argues that Obama’s speech essentially ruled and that Clinton continues to be rather hideously phony at times. (Rich makes the case in predictably stronger terms.) We agree for the most part; obviously, we prefer Obama as a candidate. But in part two of his column Rich effectively shows what a clueless idiot McCain is, which undercuts his theme of a Republican resurrection. Once September rolls around, McCain will still be a clueless idiot, whether he’s running against Clinton or Obama.

Nicholas Kristof/Iraq, $5000 Per Second?

The Short Version: Who knew? The Iraq war is expensive.

In his words: “So as we debate whether to bring our troops home, one central question should be whether Iraq is really the best place to invest $411 million every day in present spending alone.”

The Score: F (Failure)
There’s not a single thing in this column we haven’t already heard 50,000 times (and since before the war even began) and yet the war, like Kristof’s tired, pedantic prose, goes on and on and on.

Maureen Dowd/Haunting Obama’s Dreams

The Short Version: If it comes down to superdelegates — as it must — Clinton’s probably fucked.

In her words: “If Jimmy Carter, Al Gore and Nancy Pelosi are the dealmakers, it won’t take Hercule Poirot to figure out who had knives out for Hillary in this Murder on the Orient Express.”

The Score: B
The first half of this column is the same rant against the Clintons we’ve heard over and over from Dowd; whatever, she’s clearly incapable of restraint in this regard. The second half is more interesting when Dowd discusses the importance of Carter, Gore and Pelosi in the delegate equation and how they are all leaning toward Obama. As much as the idealist in us thinks the voters should decide, we appreciate this glimpse from Dowd into how the real world works.

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