Exactly. And I agree that Gore, despite reasonable expectations to throw his hat in the ring with this under his belt, will probably ultimately sit this one out. I think it's a real measure of the desire for change that so many people wish for him to jump in, that at the very least he could elevate much of the process and dialogue by his earned gravitas.
This is wishful thinking. Every bit of it's a swamp, and most of the commentators are the sort of rubes whose ancestors were up front for a public hanging back in the old days. Does Gore need to maneuver through the endless bickering of legislative simps who, rather than do anything constructive, prefer to engage in meaningless disputes over newspaper ads and junkie sex-tourist radio assholes, or better yet, even more meaningless resolutions to placate the usual squadron of mouth-breathers? Time well spent, boys, time well spent. Nothing better to do than to harass a guy who runs a completely symbolic agency for one word on a fuckin' flag certificate.
Gore should get back into this mess for what, to make us feel better for letting a bunch of crooks and punks get away with running the operation into the ground in first place? So some dipshit reporter can log face time talking about Gore's wardrobe, his weight, how often he bangs his wife, or any other inane minutiæ they can conjure up when they're not fingering themselves over Fred Thompson's height? (In the end, this will probably be Giuliani's undoing. He's simply too short to be preznit in the teevee age. Weird but true. But the Gambino-style corruption, Springer-esque personal life and crypto-fascism, that's no problem.)
Should Gore get back in so that idiotic conservabloggers can lob ridiculous scuds indicative of absolutely nothing (roughly the equivalent of pointing out that, say, the BTK killer was a lifelong registered Republican)? So some interchangeable peroxide viper can slither onto Hardballs or one of the Fox handjob shows and just pull shit straight outta their asses? Look what they've done to John Edwards -- calling him a faggot and effeminizing him wasn't enough, so now they're circulating tabloid gossip about him cheating on his cancer-stricken wife. Who needs that shit?
I thought Gore was a terrible campaigner in 2000, but being cheated (hell, mugged) out of his victory seems to have been a back-handed favor to him in a way. He certainly found a greater, more constructive sense of purpose, and the ability to move forward without having had to constantly stroke a bunch of authoritarian thugs and fend off their media hyenas, decide whether to risk adding momentum to unconscionable lies by trying to dispute them forcefully or not. He's at least tried to make up for his administration's trashing of the CAFE standards, which is something.
Sometimes you have to really wonder why people get into politics at all, given the nature of the people who cover it and participate in it. I suppose if you become a hog farmer, you have to have a high tolerance for the smell of pig shit, even though pigs themselves are much more intelligent and amusing than your average political commentator.
And if Gore decides to use this last best opportunity to take one more shot at the ring, I'll certainly listen to what he has to say. There's no Nader conscience vote this time around, though while I like the field of Democratic candidates, I remain pessimistic about their will to actually do anything that requires a fight. It's galling that a loathed minority party headed by a universally despised 30% preznit can still push anyone around. But knowing what we know, seeing what we see and hearing what we hear, it's not difficult at all to understand if Gore respectfully declines.
As the Rude Pundit points out, it's not that we're not worthy or that Gore is too good for us. It's that there's still too much stupid in the system, in the legislative priorities and will to stand tall, in the mindless horse-race coverage, and in the sizable rump of the electorate that is still apparently okey-doke with all that shuck-and-jive. Maybe the truly smart person knows better than to even bother with it, if he knows he no longer has the stomach for the smell of pig shit.