THE SPINE FEBRUARY 7, 2008
It's hard for me to see how Hillary halts the Obama express. The statistical breakdown in delegates is right now just about even. And the odds in the Tidewater states, the District of Columbia and Louisiana are very much in his favor. Of course, I never trust inevitability. But the psychologically and racially liberating momentum behind Obama's candidacy needs a culmination; and it won't be with Clinton cobbling together among the unelected super-delegates a margin that will have to stand against the spirit of the times.
The spirit of the times often correlates with frenzy, and it's not so pretty face appeared when Obama led his supporters in screaming "we can, we can" on Tuesday night. It reminded me of the zealotry of the sixties, which are not happy memories for me. And, I think, also not for the country.
But Obama is far from being a zealot. After all, he does have thought-out and solid views on many urgent matters on the domestic agenda. Moreover, he has spoken clearly on the increasing economic inequalities which will undermine always precarious democratic capitalism. I also believe that he will come to see that "getting to yes," as the never discouraged conflict resolution folk put it, will not in this era be a rewarding strategy for American foreign policy.
Still, the Obama campaign is not only about politics. In a deep sense, it is also about history, American history. Barack Obama's nomination and election to the presidency would fulfill the then-barely imagined yet intrinsic promise of the Revolution.