Trump World Grab-Bag--A Collection

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Jeb, This is Awkward

You know, I really don't want to be back talking about 2016, but Jeb was all over the Sunday shows, and it was hard not to look at it as being possibly just as much about 2016 as about peddling his book. And yes, maybe it's a little bit like being a "crack addict" to speculate about this--but really? Are we going to shrug off the legacy of big bro' as "not baggage"?

Heavy sigh. The last quarter-century is all about Bushes. There is no escape here. How to explain?

That outsider artist reinventing himself as a premier puppy painter?  Is forever linked with an Administration that oversaw a war in Iraq that will always be associated with gross abuse. (I wonder if there isn't something in W that makes him uniquely suited to capturing the soul of puppies. They, too, are scolded for making messes they don't entirely understand and aren't sure what they should do to fix.)

But Jeb himself isn't quite ready to articulate a vision for the future, at odds with his book, at odds with interviews of mere days ago.  He can invoke the Reagan Administration of which his own father was a part as a time of less partisanship--but it doesn't help him begin to explain how to arrive at a less-partisan future--anymore than his brother's "compassionate conservatism" did. Not when the 1988 campaign of his father against Dukakis was one of the most wedge-issue-tainted smear-jobs. Not when the first Gulf War has so much to do with a very specific vision of power and patriotism. That is what W inherited--and it's Jeb's legacy, too, like it or not. Which is why he's spinning like a tire in a damp rut over immigration. Does he, like his father, supposedly lack "the vision thing"? Or has he only seen too much?

No matter. Na'gonna happen. Not even if folks in the Beltway bubble want to make it happen.

(X-posted at Rumproast.)

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