Here we are in the middle of another primary election. Every four years, we hear presidential hopefuls make promises that we know they can’t keep once they actually step into office. History tells us that this happens at every election. We all know Benjamin Franklin’s definition of insanity as “doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results,” and we don’t like to think of ourselves as insane. But then we wonder, why should we care about presidential candidates? We still have to pick our favorite future promise-breaker in November, right?
The Atlantic’s Andrew Sullivan appeared to have been wrestling with these same questions when he wrote “Goodbye to All That: Why Obama Matters” (December 2007). After explaining why he thinks Barack Obama should matter in this election, he says, “None of this, of course, means that Obama will be the president some are dreaming of.” He also states that “Obama … is no saint.” Of course not. Obama is a politician. Sullivan was all the wiser for stressing this before explaining why Obama is the best bet of all the politicians running for president this year.
Sullivan places his bet in response to a war being waged. “At its best, the Obama candidacy is about ending a war