Monday, October 08, 2007

Fred Thompson: The Incredible Non-Candidate

Poor, poor Fred Thompson.

Have you ever seen someone NOT want to do something so bad that it's horribly obvious he's just doing it to avoid being henpecked?

Because that's what Fred Thompson reminds me of now - some poor guy who's been sent out to get groceries at four in the AM, and can't or won't say 'No.'

It's never a good thing to throw a fit or look as unhappy as you feel when you're on such a mission... so you soldier up, say 'yes dear' and march there and back, all the while grumbling inside and thinking 'Why me?' 'Why now?' 'What did I do to deserve this?'

So he purses his lips, stands up there and talks, which he's good at. He's an actor, after all - he DOES know how to deliver a line.

But he also knows how to fake emotions, doesn't he? So why can't he fake any enthusiasm for the role he's running for?

You'd think someone of his caliber could at least turn on the charm. But when you catch him in front of audiences, or on the go, he seems to have all the zip and zoom of someone headed into the dentist for a root canal.

That's hardly inspiring, to see someone so UNinspired trying to become the President. It almost makes you wonder why he's doing it.

Me, I have my own theory. It's called Anybody But Them.

See, Giuliani looks terrible in a dress, and is too in league with teh Gay. John McCain won't play by anyone's rules but his own. Mitt Romney's one of those Mormon weirdoes. And everyone else gets small change in the polls, either because they have no real recognition or they're too maverick - especially that Ron Paul guy.

Sure, maybe one of them could win against Hillary or Obama, but no one's entirely happy with anyone. There isn't a central, uniting candidate who can hit all the buzzers at once.

And when you're running against someone who can - like Hillary or Obama - that's a serious, serious problem.

So someone, somewhere, got told to recruit someone who could appeal to the Right voters. And who did they find? Fred Thompson, the next Ronald Reagan.

I mean, he's an actor, isn't he? Yes. And no one's got anything bad to say about him, do they? No.

So that makes him perfect... right?

Well... the problem is that Reagan had drive. Reagan had passion.

Reagan WANTED to be President, and it showed.

Fred Thompson... I'm not really convinced this is a role he wants to play. It's like that someone just kept pestering him and pestering him until he finally said "uncle," but he's got no real enthusiasm for it.

Put it another way: do you remember the old Robert Redford movie, The Candidate?

The parallels aren't terribly striking, except for my theory that Thompson had someone hunt him down to run. Robert Redford's character didn't plan to win - just to tweak the establishment's nose - but he finds his stride and actually goes for it, after a while.

And there's a moment at the end of the movie, when he's won the election, and he sits down with the guy who recruited him and says words to the effect of "What do I do know?" All the other guy can do is look at him.

I wonder if we'll see something similar in the next few weeks.

At any rate, his first big debate's tonight. Maybe we'll see the fire in his eyes, now.

But I doubt it.


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