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Kevin Wolf

I'm undecided as to the wisdom of another Gore run. (Perhaps I should consult with our Great Decider.) A lot of it has to do with the Democratic party establishment, which Gore would have to deal with in addition to the hostile media.

I think they've shown themselves (in the choice of the unviable Kerry, the allowing of the Repubs to frame every debate, the lack of opposition to Bush) to be just plain awful - yet they will insist that Gore be one of them, on their team, etc.

Gore's task, should he decide to run, will be hard enough without his own party's "help."

Shakespeare's Sister

I read Cohen's piece the day it came out, and was already infuriated after the first three words: "Boring Al Gore..."

Just fuck you, Cohen, thought I. Boring as compared to what, exactly? The thrill of Shock and Awe? The deathporn of watching an entire American city drown? The titillating anticipation of a nuclear strike against Iran?

Give me a small fucking break. That our media can relegate the passion for saving our world demonstrated by Al Gore for the duration of my entire life (not to mention the vociferous endorsement of little things like a collective social conscience, expanded access to information, etc.) as "boring," to be sniffed at like so much day-old bread, is enough to drive me absolutely, irrevocably insane. If my choices are between an "entertaining" court jester with a penchant for warmongering and a "boring" intellectual who gives a shit about things beyond that which personally benefit himself or his most indulged base, give me boring every day of the week and twice on Sundays, thank you very much.


I second what SS said and am glad she said it first.

As for boring... I find the media to be rather boring.


One thing I've found frustrating with some right leaning types is that they will repeat those 'Gore Invented the Internet' canards to describe Gore's failings.

When pointed out that it's not true, they will turn around and admit it, but use it as a bit of truthiness, pointing out that Gore should have invented the internet, before he denied inventing the INternet.

Or something like that. This is where my head typically explodes.

Kit Stolz

Interesting that you think the press corps hates Gore and Clinton for being such smarty-pants.

I thought the country hated Gore and Clinton for being such smarty-pants, and elected a dummy to prove it. (Or, almost elected a dummy to prove it. You know what I mean.)

Do you think if the press corps had been more decent to Gore, that he would have won? (Or, won easily?)

Gore seems to think so (judging by Klein's essay). I wonder if in compensation, the press might actually give him a break this time around, if he runs, the same way basketball refs are known for "make-up calls," to balance the scales for blown calls.


Kit, in a word, no. The press corps has certain macros about Al Gore hard-coded into its keyboards.

I don't know if the press resented Bill and Al's smartness or just assumed they were two more pols like the rest of the ones the press had been covering for years. The 2000 election may have been a manifestation of the same phenomenon that sank Adlai Stevenson's candidacies: the "regular guy" Ike vs. the "smart guy" Adlai. Clinton benefited from Perot's candidacy in 1992 and from Dole's miserable campaign (I never really felt Dole was interested in being President) in 1996. Gore suffered from having an opponent who had eight years of his party's rage at being shut out of the Presidency behind him, with its entire machinery fully engaged.

That's not to say Gore didn't make mistakes. Running away from eight years of prosperity under Bill's and his watch was the first one; not talking about his vision of the world as a fragile environment enough was another.


Thanks Lance. It needs to be said, and said, and said, and resaid. The culprits need to be ID'ed. Or they will do it again.

Shakespeare's Sister

On a related note, if you haven't read Greg Mitchell's piece A Crisis Almost Without Equal, I highly recommend it. (I've also got it reposted here.)

Anne Laurie

I believe Al Gore when he says he doesn't want to run for President again, because Ted Kennedy hasn't run again either. Both Al and Teddy were raised in the kind of old-fashioned families where good, dutiful sons went into the family business -- and their families' business happened to be politics. Al was, and Teddy is, hard-working successful senators who ran for president because that's the expected career track for smart, successful senators who have the money and the connections to do so. But I think Al Gore preferred being a senator to campaigning for president, just as it was dreadfully obvious that Teddy would never have run for the nomination if his older brothers had survived. (Watching Kennedy's concession speech was seeing a man who's been reprieved from a months-long nightmare of wondering whether he'd feel the bullets before they shattered his skull.) Al was a dutiful son of a man badly mistreated by Republican racist thugs, and a dutiful citizen willing to risk his fortune and his reputation campaigning for the hard job of continuing the Clinton Prosperity Years. Winning the 2000 election, and losing his seat to the machinations of another bunch of Republican racist thugs, was quite enough of a sacrifice for any one American to make. Mr. Gore has many years of public service left in him, but I don't think he wants to waste any more of them in the peculiar rituals of the modern American presidential campaign.

Myself, I'd like to see John Kerry run again, and I think he'd like the chance to do so, although I'm not sure he won't run into the same "been there, done that" problem with the spoiled darlings of the modern media. He's also smart, but he's more ambitious than Gore, and I think meaner by nature -- which can only be a positive in today's debased campaign arena. (Gore was a reporter, first in Vietnam and then in Tennessee, before becoming a senator. Kerry was a combat officer and then became a federal prosecutor, both occupations which require a certain ferocity.) Sure, listening to the Conventional Wisdom didn't get him enough of a victory margin to keep the Republicans from stealing the presidency AGAIN, but despite all the carping before & after November 2004 he didn't disgrace himself or his supporters and he did way better than the CW expected of a little-known Massachusetts Liberal running against a "war president". I think he'd be a great choice for the 2008 "Had Enough?" Democratic campaign. I think Kerry/Clinton or Kerry/Obama or Kerry/Edwards or Kerry/Hackett or even Kerry/Dean would all be GREAT choices for the 2008 ticket! (But I think Dean's going to be having too much fun as the looming Rethuglican implosion, or "Fitzmas", allows him to avenge every personal attack, smear, dirty trick, and assault on his family to give up his current position.)

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