In our opinion, Hillary Clinton and John McCain have recently taken to the false “boomerang-likely” election strategy of attacking Barack Obama (see also Obama Campaign) as the frontrunner, rather than sticking to their arguments and platforms as to why their own election would be better for the nation.
As we just read at the article of David Espo of AP at AOL News about the head-to-head debate of Obama and Clinton in Austin, Texas, Clinton “ridiculed [Obama] as the candidate of “change you can Xerox.” That statement shows poor judgment on four fronts:
First, no one doubts that if Obama is elected, that there will be change.
Second, the metaphor is poorly taken, since change is one thing that definitely can not be “photocopied”.
Third, the use of the word Xerox as a verb has long been resisted by the company for legal reasons, of which Hillary, as a Yale Law School graduate, should be aware. The Wikipedia writes:
“The word “xerox” (or “make a xeroxed copy”, etc.) is commonly used as a synonym for “photocopy” (both as a noun and a verb) in North American English; for example, “I xeroxed the document and placed it on your desk.” or “Please make a xeroxed copy of the articles and hand them out a week before the exam“. Though both are common, the company does not condone such uses of its trademark, and is particularly concerned about the ongoing use of Xerox as a verb as this places the trademark in danger of being declared a generic word by the courts. The company is engaged in an ongoing advertising and media campaign to convince the public that Xerox should not be used as a verb.“
Fourth, Presidential candidates should not be using statements that basically serve as indirect advertising for corporate institutions.
Obama’s reply showed his great leadership skills as he countered:
“What we shouldn’t be doing is tearing each other down, we should be lifting the country up.“
Score that one for Obama. This interchange in a nutshell continues to demonstrate in our view that Obama is the better Democratic Presidential candidate (even though we also think that Clinton is capable). Obama’s response indicates that he is sincerely interested in the betterment of the country, and is not getting carried away by the personal wish to be elected.
McCain, who we think would also make a good President, would certainly be well advised in his campaign not to get involved in too much mudslinging, since he also has good objective arguments on his side. In other words, there are plenty of legitimate problems that need to be addressed on the way to the White House without any need to make the campaign a “knock down” festival, which in our opinion Obama would surely win anyway.
The question of charismatic leadership has been decided and Obama wins, hands down.
However, there are legitimate issues (the economy, the war in Iraq, etc.) about which voters can differ in their opinions. Change, yes, but what kind of change? That in our view is the central political issue beyond the personalities.
Given the state of the economy, the crisis in the banking and housing industries, and the widespread desire of many Americans to let Iraq now run its own affairs, we continue to think that these vote-deciding parameters favor Obama’s election – but, all punditry aside – in the end, the people decide.