I've been trying to get my mind around the whole PUMA phenomenon. I like and respect some of the people involved with PUMA, but I neither like nor respect PUMA itself. To me, politics is, first and foremost, about issues. During the primaries, I saw Clinton supporters as generally more issues-based than were most Obama supporters. I have been open about that fact that I found a disturbing level of personality cult behind the Obama movement, which resulted in an even more disturbing dishonesty and misogyny in how these cultists attacked Clinton. I expect such cultism from Republicans, and I expect such dishonesty and misogyny from both Republicans and the corporate media, but I did not expect to see so much of it from Democrats and ostensibly Democratic bloggers. I've been open about my disgust and disdain.
To those still deluded by Obama's hope & change schtick, the past week should have been a reality check. Instead, there was plenty of rationalizing and whining. I will have more to say about that. But as bad as Obama is proving on FISA, McCain is even worse. McCain buys in completely to the Unitary Executive. McCain buys into the supposed need for domestic spying. On literally every issue where Obama is proving, as I expected he would, a compromised incrementalist- taking the same stands that his rationalizers would have excoriated Hillary Clinton for having taken- McCain is much worse. Obama's Iraq withdrawal plan is weak and incomplete. McCain doesn't believe we need to withdraw. Indeed, he seems intent on expanding the war to Iran. Obama's global warming plan doesn't go far enough fast enough. McCain's is but window dressing, with cash prizes for the energy industry. Obama doesn't stand up against the adiministration's torture policies. McCain thinks torture is okay. I could go on and on.
Most Clinton supporters believed themselves pragmatics, while some viewed Obama supporters as fantacists. Anyone now trying to claim that a McCain presidency would be acceptable or tolerable or in any way preferable to an Obama presidency is either more dishonest than the most dishonest Clinton haters, or so blinded by anger as to be irrational. On the issues, there is no comparison. Part of the reason I was so disgusted by the attacks on Hillary Clinton was because she was nearly identical to Obama on most issues, but if you cared about Hillary Clinton's issues, you have to prefer Obama to McCain. It's not about you or your anger or your hurt. It's about the future of our planet. It's about that war in Iraq, and the possibility of a war in Iran. It's about taking steps forward on health care and the economy and education and energy policy and everything else, or taking steps backwards, if at all. It's still about the issues. To those that cared about the issues, in the first place. Simply put: the PUMA phenomenon represents exactly what some Clinton supporters criticized some Obama supporters for being part of- a cult.