To call Dean’s second place finish in New Hampshire “close” is to approach a cliff face, jump off, and attempt to land on the ground without so much as a bruise. But apparently it’s worse than that. Howard Dean is now down to $5 million. Barring a Missouri win next Tuesday, it looks like we may stuck with Kerry. Unless Dean musters up Robert Kennedy-like support in California and many of the big states, and reenergizes his campaign. Kennedy, however, was more of an idealist than Dean is. And it ain’t exactly 1968.
However, while I woefully miscalculated the percentage points, I was dead-on in my place predictions.
[UPDATE: Dan Spencer has compiled all blog NH predictions with success and failure rates.]
[1/21/06 UPDATE: Apologies for the introspective aside, but I’m truly astonished by the idealism here. Not entirely surprised, mind you, because wildly optimistic notions enter fresh upon my noggin on a daily basis, with several acted upon during any given week. Indeed, I can safely confess that, since I turned thirty, life has been a process of trying to hold onto any and all scraps of hope, bonhomie and idealism, as the wise and sober forces of adulthood demand me to be serious and responsible (I am to a great degree, but I maintain that one can be both!). Granted, there’s still plenty of helium in the Zeppelin, with the only real Hindenburg being my inevitable death, I suppose. But this is what it means to be a committed “optimistic realist” at 31. On one hand, and tying this into Howard Dean, it would be foolish to discount the role of the Internet in disseminating Howard Dean’s Muskie moment. The conservatives guffawed and remixed that twenty second holler and played it over and over and effectively obliterated Dean’s momentum. But let us also consider how refreshingly genuine Dean’s yell was from the stiffs. Here was a man who was ultimately punished for expressing a genuine moment of excitement during the 2004 presidential election. And how much of a telling statment is that of what the United States political process has become? Little wonder that we have no real candidates to choose from anymore. American media, and those who react to it, is particularly unforgiving when it comes to genuine enthusiasm.]