Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Wesley Clark's One Core Belief

Wesley Clark's One Core Belief

I can't recall a candidate who seemed to enter politics believing nothing and who manufactured strongly held positions out of nothing, simply to fit a niche. Sure, Democrats have adjusted their beliefs to conform to the demands of the special interests groups who form the Democrat coalition. Several Democrats have switched from pro-life to pro-abortion because no Democrat can win the nomination without the abortion vote. But a candidate who invented a whole new ideology to conform to the caricature of the party whose nomination he seeks? Only Wesley Clark has managed to sink to that depth of pandering.

But, Peggy Noonan has finally identified his one core belief. "Gen. Clark gives off the vibrations of a man who has no real beliefs save one: Wes Clark should be president. The rest--the actual meaning of his candidacy--he seems to be making up as he goes along. It seems a candidacy void of purpose beyond meeting the candidate's hunger. He is passionately for the war until he announces for the Democratic nomination facing an antiwar base, at which point he becomes passionately antiwar. He thanks God that George Bush and his aides are in the White House, then he says they're the worst leaders ever. Anyone can change his mind; but this is not a change, it's a swerve, and without a convincing rationale. Last week, Brit Hume asked Gen. Clark when it was that he'd "first noticed" that he--Gen. Clark--was a Democrat. There was laughter, but that was a nice big juicy softball. Gen. Clark flailed and fumbled. Later he blamed Mr. Hume for being a Republican agent."


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