Deja vu, all over again

With both John Edwards and Hillary Clinton maybe running, and a lot of noise about Obama, I can’t help but see the Edwards-Clinton-Obama collision as a reminder of the Edwards-Kerry-Dean collision.

If this comes to pass, I have this tickle in my brain that thinks the eventual ticket will end up being Clinton-Edwards leaving Obama forced out. Obama will be let go as the wild, radical that can’t be presidential. Edwards will again be confined to playing the slightly radical foil to the more seasoned and savvy insider. And, Clinton will get hammered from all sides for her political savvy and experience as being too much of a politician and not enough states-person.

It’s good cop, bad cop and insane cop. I remember that working really well to make drama for Hill Street Blues, back in the day, but it’s such a tired strategy of procrustean politics that constantly silences voices from the sphere of discourse. It seems so often that the intentional practical design of the political system is to silence voices. The middle radicals side with the powerful for favour and throw the fringe under the bus. It happened with the anti-federalists, and seems to keep happening again and again ever since.

I think, maybe, this is a disease of the system. Would this happen if the system were built on proportional representation and a parliamentary structure? A system that created proportional space for alternate ideas seems like something to be desired. A government which can call confidence in the executive to question when things are rotten, instead of being stuck for year and years? Wouldn’t that break the cruft loose?

Wouldn’t it also be amazing if the chief executive had a constitutional duty to respond to questions from Congress regularly? Not so much with the staged press conferences or the cooked audiences, but real and regular events when the executive had to stand up and face other representatives and explain themself. And, if they couldn’t do so, they could face a vote of no confidence.