A reader weighs in on the experience question:
Given that at least some experience is necessary to learn the day-to-day workings of the DC process, that should not take long for a sharp mind to learn, and I don't find much debate on whether or not Obama is sharp. It is pretty clear that he is. Obama's appeal is at least partly rooted in his inexperience. We may be approaching a "changing of the guard" moment, where his appeal stems from the generation gap between him and most other likely contenders. I believe that his heritage and globe-spanning life experience contribute to this appeal, mainly because the current executive administration has a decidedly parochial air.
Comparisons with Kennedy, irritating as one may find them, are not misplaced. His Catholicism broke sharply with the previous hegemony of WASPs in the White House, and though not a generation younger than Nixon, he was certainly seen as more vibrant and modern. He was also considered rather a knave, although one with a pedigree. At the very least, it will be interesting to track Obama's arc. So far, I can't help liking the guy.
Mickey Kaus isn't so enthusiastic:
Maybe I'm an old-fashioned Joe Kleinish Clintonian self-hating Dem. But I'm not swooning until I hear Obama to tell Democrats something they maybe don't want to hear
Being an incorrigible fence-sitter I like Giuliani as well. But, as John Derbyshire cheerily points out, lots of people have different reasons not to:
The fun thing about Rudy is that EVERYONE has some reason to hate him. My Wall St pals all hate him for the stunt he pulled as DA, having guys dragged off the trading floor in handcuffs. I hate him for being such a squish on illegal aliens. Blacks hate him because he never, when Mayor, gave the time of day to their "community leaders." Right-to-lifers hate him because he's not. Catholics hate him for his divorces. I'm sure Protestants hate him for something or other. (Being a Catholic?) Everybody holds paper on this guy. What can I tell you? He's a shoo-in.