Hillary Derangement Syndrome

Another virus I've contracted, apparently:

You are usually an astute observer of the political scene, but this time, I think you're blinded by HDS (Hillary Derangement Syndrome). You really think the Republican establishment is so publically drooling over the prospect of a Clinton nomination because they think she'll extend Bush's Iraq policy into the next presidency? Come on. They're eager for the Democrats to nominate her because they see her candidacy as their only hope of retaining the GOP grip on the presidency.

Clinton isn't nearly anti-war enough to suit me, but I give her credit where it is due. She had the huevos to vote to cut off funding for the war and has repeatedly and vociferously denounced Bush's quagmire -- as recently as this Sunday, in fact. Although she believes some troops will be necessary in the Middle East to counter terrorism and prevent genocide, she doesn't seem at all interested in "legitimating and extending" Bush's Iraq debacle to rescue his legacy. It's hard to imagine an honest reading of her words or deeds that would lead to that conclusion.

I'm an Obama supporter, and as much as I disagree with the idea of keeping any troops in Iraq, it seems obvious to me that Clinton's approach is the moderate anti-war path advocated by many centrists. Obama himself wouldn't immediately remove every American soldier from the Middle East.

It's so interesting to observe the extreme responses Ms. Clinton evokes -- someone should do a sociological study. She's a prism through which people see their darkest fears projected. To the wingnut right, she's a wild-eyed Marxist who will destroy the economy and make abortion mandatory. To the usually sensible Mr. Sullivan, she's a patrician fellow-traveler with the oligarchic Bush clan.

Another readers writes:

You are missing or overlooking the essential point of Brooks' column: That Hil's popularity isn't just a DC establishment phenomenon, but supported by middle-income and working-class people who are the true base of the Dem Party.

Obama is Dean with charm and charisma: A darling of the educated elites, the Net savvy, the well-heeled who have the time and money to make Internet contributions. Dean got savaged in Iowa when "regular folks" came out to caucus. I suspect a similar fate for Obama.

We'll see, won't we?