Obama Adrift

Some readers have cavilled at my worries that the Obama campaign is adrift. I still think it is. There is none of the insurgent fervor of the winter and spring, no clear message that hasn't been used or that isn't rather tired populist boilerplate, no over-arching vision of where he wants to take America in the world. He made a retrospectively foolish decision to make a vacuous speech in Berlin, and has offered little but me-tooism on Iran and Georgia. Now we see a total capitulation to the Clintons at the Denver Convention. Does Obama not understand that the Clintons are actively working for a McCain victory this fall? You can never give them this kind of oxygen without their using it against their real enemy: Obama, not McCain.

This is not the change we have been waiting for. The Obama campaign has not had the initiative in this campaign for many weeks - and the polls are revealing this. McCain's ads have now been out-shining Obama's for several weeks. And the choice of the stadium address remains, to my mind, a dreadful one, fatefully underscoring many people's suspicions of the man's rock star celebrity status. And Warner as a key-noter? Ugh.

Maybe Obama can use the veep pick and convention to turn things around. But his campaign is flailing. At this rate, he will lose this election.