Saturday, November 04, 2006

In reality, Webb is a breath of fresh air

Democratic senatorial candidate Jim Webb
In a way unseen before in Virginia politics, fiction has become a part of the 2006 senatorial race. For months Sen. George F. Allen has been using a snide tone to call his opponent, James H. “Jim” Webb, a “fiction-writer.” More recently, Webb’s novels have been derided by Allen as smut.

Allen’s ubiquitous television commercials are now claiming Webb’s writings are “deviant” and that they “demean” women. Well, it’s no wonder Allen’s handlers want him to focus on fiction. In the last 12 weeks reality has been awfully tough on Allen’s supposedly easy run to win a second term in the U.S. Senate.

In reality, Allen’s record as a senator stands in obedient compliance with the Bush administration’s woefully unpopular positions on many issues, including the war in Iraq and stem cell research. Reality now has Allen trailing in the most recent polls, having dropped over 10 points in the last month.

Reality now has Allen’s heretofore useful image as an aw-shucks Southern gentleman in tatters. Reality also has comedians poking fun at Allen as a buffoon, a total phony.

It was in the real world that a youthful Jim Webb survived combat missions as a marine in Vietnam. That experience served as the foundation for his career, both as a writer and in public service as an expert on military matters in the Reagan administration.

In the real world Jim Webb has a built a resume that testifies to his many accomplishments. Webb has won widespread praise for his fiction, as well as his reportage on international politics.

Attacking an award-winning writer for his body of work is an extreme measure. In truth, only desperation or stupidity would make a political campaign do it, because the professional spin doctors know full well that the press -- with writers at the heart of it -- is not going to like such a tactic much, no matter whether they lean to the left or the right.

So, Allen’s attack on Webb’s profession -- a lurch backward into the bad old days of book-burning -- is the surest sign we’ve seen that Allen knows he’s behind Webb and time is running out.

In reality, Webb is a welcome breath of fresh air in politics; he thinks for himself, says what he believes and carries himself with dignity.

Reality in 2006 has called for a change. Fortunately for Virginians, Webb heard the call and, once again, he stands ready to do his duty.


Anonymous said...

Good piece...I always enjoy your analysis

thegools said...

Now if only he will pull his off.... Virginia will have a great character in the Senate, standing a head high than most.