Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Other End of the Horse

Hi, I’m Tim, and I’m a political junkie. I’m not sure if there’s a twelve-step program for us, but if so, at least I’ve got the requisite opening lines down. I’m equally unsure that you could effectively run a twelve-step program for us, because, for starters, we’d certainly want to conduct a series of straw polls over what steps there would be, and in what order. Not to mention organizing the committee to implement said polls. Further, we’d be so obsessed with the demographics of our group, the trends in messages shared, and the issues that drive each of us to such distraction, that I’m sure we’d just end up politicizing the entire thing. Imagine a ful-service bar attempting to treat alcoholism, and that’s about what it would look like.

As you probably noted, unless you read “The Horse’s Mouth” as a sleep aid, as I do (sorry David, but you know I’m not to be trusted!), I am not the originator of this blog. I have long wanted to start a blog of my own, but have never been able or willing to devote the time to it. But since I need a continuing fix for my politics addiction, what better way than blogging about it. Until I take the plunge and start my own, David has been gracious enough to let me occasionally hijack his.

This seems to me to be a perfect fit. We met online at a fan site of our beloved Lakers (although I was tempted to say it was a dating site, just to spice things up). Our politics are somewhat agreeable, and we are both men creeping into middle age, but still hanging on to the dream of being published writers. OK, truth be told, David’s been creeping into middle age a bit longer than I have, but he’s also actually finished a novel! Given the name of his blog, and my disposition, which should be readily apparent if I’m any kind of writer, perhaps I can function as the other end of the horse.

I am no stranger to being, or being called, a horse’s ass. In fact, my political addiction coupled with a contrary streak often leads to this behavior. While a staunch Democrat, if you put me in a room full of them, I naturally morph into the room’s Republican. I can even do a spot-on Sarah Palin, as I’m originally from Wisconsin, and her accent is faux Minnesota. Throw in a dollop of “Church Lady”, and voila!

But perhaps the most telling symptom of my addiction is the need to read all the numbers, analyze them, get the internal data, and roll all of it together to partake in the ultimate political junkie sacrament: prognostication. With me, it’s bad, real bad.

On Super Tuesday, while most observers were asking whether Obama could really win the primary, and if so, what his chances in a general election might look like, I was quickly organizing a “who is his VP pick?” contest. I chose, yup, Joe Biden. This doesn’t make me particularly prescient either. If you look at all the things Barack needed for the general election and beyond, how could you not pick Joe the Senator? Experienced insider with a vast pool of knowledge and respect in Washington? Check. Popular with white, blue-collar voters, especially in must-win Pennsylvania? Check. Not likely to run for President later, and thus not likely to derail the campaign, or worse, the administration for personal politics? Check. There’s a lot more, but you get the idea.

The week before the election, while most were sweating the polls, the Bradley Effect, vote tampering, turnout, and other such issues, I was busy organizing a state-by-state Presidential election pool. I’m happy to report that if North Carolina stays blue, I am a perfect 50 and 0. Of course, I also predicted Hillary Clinton would win the primary before it started (and was a John Edwards supporter, although not to the degree that some were), so I’m not infallible, merely so involved that I get some of them right.

But that’s the problem. Without a blog, I have nowhere to post these prognostications, insights, and other drivel, so I can claim credit later. So David, as part of my first post on your wonderful site, here’s a fearless political prediction:

In 2012, Joe Biden will not be the Vice Presidential nominee. Barring some major catastrophe, scandal, etc., that honor will go to Rahm Emmanuel.

OK, I feel all better now. David, thanks again for the opportunity, and I look forward to, hopefully, more substantive missives in the future. Oh, if you don’t approve this message, please delete this post...

Guest posted by Tim Johnson


D.A.A. Price said...

Excellent job Tim. Do I get a cut of your winnings now?

Really, thanks for the contribution and feel free to stop by any time.

encina1 said...

A chief of staff to be the future VP? You so crazy!

Good start. It's better than the drivel you spew on that other site. ;)

And given your angle here (the other end), your avatar at the other site is so appropriate.


Tim Johnson said...

Haha, thanks guys. Next time I think I'll go with a lighter subject, like why people need to find god.

Sorry about the winnings Dave, but me and the GF are going to go out and eat some (symbolically?) bloody red meat with the winnings.

Prakash Kashwan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Prakash Kashwan said...

Hi Tim,
Your prediction is very very interesting...and by the way, what is going on with Joe Biden - I mean if Hillary gets to be the Secretary of State, what use Joe's foreign policy expertise? I mention this because it does support your hypothesis that he is going to be out of the game by 2012.