January 2, 2008

The Amazing Race for White House Survival

Picked up local freebie newspaper, Boston Phoenix, this morning - it is freely available at bus-stands and trains stations here in Boston area - and found this interesting article on the US Presidential race.

The amazing race

For the past year, presidential politics has been building to the crescendo that is the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary. But those will be done and gone eight days into the new year, and, strangely enough, the race for the White House will drag on for another 10 months. You know the process is vitally important to the future of America and the world and stuff, but honestly, how will you stay interested all year?

Here’s an idea: try thinking of it as a reality show, part Survivor, part Amazing Race — maybe call it The Amazing Race for White House Survival. We enter the year with 11 viable contestants: the wise but weak old man (Joe Biden); the controversial strong-willed woman (Hillary Clinton); the likable guy everyone ignores (Chris Dodd); the good-looking guy with a heart of gold (John Edwards); the bully (Rudy Giuliani); the oddball religious zealot (Mike Huckabee); the cranky old guy everyone respects but nobody likes (John McCain); the dynamic racial minority (Barack Obama); the non-dynamic ethnic minority (Bill Richardson); the calculating manipulator (Mitt Romney); and the celebrity contestant (Fred Thompson).

Over the course of the year, these players will face contests and challenges, in six distinct legs of the race, that will test their popularity, deviousness, alliance-building, and other skills that may or may not have anything to do with governing the country. Ten will be eliminated. One will make it to the end, and be crowned the winner. If we’re lucky, the rest will all be thrown together on a remote island somewhere

Read the article for the author's predictions for the next Commander-in-Chief.

Also, these related articles in the Boston Phoenix:

  • Five alive Because demography is political destiny, pay heed to the factors that will tip the race to Clinton or Obama
  • McCain still able If the Arizona Senator can rally to win the GOP nomination, he’ll likely be our next president

Coming up next: Tomorrow is the day of the Iowa caucus. Do read the details of the process at the link - especially that of the Democratic party process. Phew!

I did not know some of these details of the intricacies of the caucuses and primary system - what a horrible confusing process! Wasn't there some talk last year about having all primaries and caucuses at the same time - get done with it instead of putting so much emphasis on early no-name states, which candidates would otherwise never visit! I tried just now to find some article on why they continue with this system that the politicians themselves apparently love and loathe!

I don't have time to read thru these links on the subject now but here is some info ... which I myself will try to read by tomorrow :)

FACTBOX: Iowa caucus - small turnout, big impact - Reuters
What you need to know about the caucuses Atlanta Journal Constitution
12 Questions About The Jan. 3 Iowa Caucuses CQPolitics.com
The love-hate view of the Iowa caucus United Press International
The Granite State’s last hurrah This could be the last election in which the New Hampshire primary, and its quaintly irrelevant retail politics, really matters

Lastly...something lighter :)

If you are not tired of all the "upbeat ads and make last-minute appeals" in the build-up to tomorrow, go see "CAUCUS! The Musical," a play being performed in Des Moines for those who can't get enough of the media-saturated event.

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