Al Gore turns out to be one of those really creepy sort of politicians, the kind that want high office so they can be somebody, as opposed to someone who has a vision or idea of what they would like to do.
We know this because while Gore pursues high office, his positions about what to do seem to vary with the wind.
How can anyone reconcile what Gore said yesterday with this, which is the same Gore, but in a different election cycle. The problem with electing a man like that to any office is that one can never be certain which Gore would show up on any given day.
For a guy who claims to have invented the Internet, Gore is surprisingly blind to the ways in which this technology changes politics. Clinton is probably the last of his species, the media-powered liar who could tell the public X today and Y tomorrow, and except for a few opposition newspaper columnists off in the corner screaming about it, never get called on it.
Gore's comments to the BBC in June of 2000 have not vanished into the ether, and no one has to run down to the library and fiddle with microfilm spools to find out what he said. Like every other fact in the Universe, Gore's previous positions are now one click away from any other fact about him.
Gore cannot play politics the way Clinton did. He cannot be "committed to the overthrow of President Saddam Hussein" in one election, and totally opposed in the next. Not if he wants to be taken seriously. If he tries, as he has done here, he will be exposed as an opportunistic liar. Since no one can tell whether he was lying then or is lying now, no one should -- or will -- trust him to hold either position. He'll say anything that he thinks will give him an advantage right now. He watched Clinton do this successfully through most of the Clinton presidency. But even for Clinton, by 1998 or so the Internet was already making an impact on Clinton's ability to tell the Big Lies.
Gore seems to have totally missed what this means. The era of the media-powered blow-dried empty suit is pretty much over in politics. People with basic principles, whether on the left or the right, are reasonably safe in this new environment, but the guy whose act was always to say 'the right thing for right now' -- figuring no one will remember what he said yesterday -- is in a world of hurt.
The technology of politics has passed Albert Gore Junior by, and he doesn't seem to have noticed. He's still out there telling us what he thinks we want to hear, but now it's too easy to see that's all he ever does. He doesn't mean anything by what he says, he's just making noises with his mouth, hoping to tap into the public passions of the moment. He stands for nothing, except wanting to be the Chief that people Hail to.
His is not a type that ever should have been elected to high office. He's a little man, with little ambitions and little thoughts, mostly about himself. Good riddance to him, and to his type.
posted on 9/25/02 2:08 AM Eastern by Nick Danger
Simpson said that the congressional vote to approve then President Bush's decision to send half a million American soldiers to fight against Iraq's Saddam Hussein was of sobering importance. Experts were predicting heavy American casualties. "I can't think of anyone who didn't have a lump in his or her throat as they weighed the situation." The night before the debate, said Simpson, Al Gore stepped in to the Republican cloakroom where Simpson and Senator Dole were discussing the upcoming Gulf War vote. Gore got right to the point. He offered to sell his vote -- to support President Bush -- if the Republicans could guarantee him a prime time speaking slot that would ensure him plenty of coverage in the news cycle. Simpson said that while in his ad Gore says he "broke with his own party to support the Gulf War," it's much closer to the truth to say he broke for the cameras to support the Gulf War. While Gore insists that he is "fighting for us," said Simpson, his Gulf War vote shows he is "usually fighting for Al."