Cultural Revolutions

A Lot in Common

Al Gore and George W. Bush have a lot in common: They're both spoiled rich boys and sons of famous politicians; both are party animals. I thought it could not get any worse, but I was wrong. The first rule of American politics is that it can always get worse and usually does.

Both Gore and Bush were challenged by the left wings of their parties: Gore, by Mr. Basketball Jones himself, Bill Bradley, who wanted to put his personal race obsession at the top of the American agenda and to socialize whatever sectors of economic life were still in private hands; Bush, by the reform-minded friend of Charles Keating and Joe Bonnano, a divorced philanderer who offered himself as the moral alternative to Bill Clinton.

John McCain's worst liability was not his smarmy hypocrisy—he is, after all, a member of Congress—but his megalomaniac foreign policy: Crank up the war machines, arm the Muslims against the Christians, destabilize Russia.

As if to prove just how unstable he is, McCain not only campaigned for the Democratic vote—against his own party—but at a key point in his campaign, he denounced the so-called Religious Right, which is his party's core. Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson deserve criticism for the Christian Coalition's suicidal support for Bush senior and Bob Dole, but a primary campaign is not the proper occasion for a self-criticism session. Whatever else it may have accomplished,...

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