Hillary has been better about going on the anti-war offensive, but she picks her spots so selectively it seems more like trial balloons then genuine conviction. Despite receiving good press for blasting Rumsfeld, she still let Ned Lamont die on the vine. I imagine if she'd only known then what she knows now, she would have lent her name to the cause. Hillary loves a parade, but prefers not to lead it. I suspect her whole Senatorial career has been but a stepping stone for her as she's done a safe, quiet job, looking past it all to the '08 run. As it approaches, she knows that sticking her neck out too far could blow the whole thing. She's learned well the point is to get out there and project personality without saying anything.
Hillary Clinton is a business-as-usual politician, tied deeply to big businesses like Wal-Mart. She brings great name recognition but has major baggage. Though she has eluded being pinned too badly, she is no hero of the middle class, and has sat by while Medicare was rewritten by lobbyists in their own favor and Massachussetts implemented a state-wide trial health plan for all residents. This bodes poorly for any plan under Hillary whose "big issue" was supposedly nationalized health care.
Where it will get most interesting is when the "new breed" of anti-corporatist, anti-cronyism and anti-war candidates like Barrack Obama, Dennis Kucinich and Russ Feingold will clash with old school Washington vets like Clinton, Joe Lieberman and Jack Murtha. The battle for the party may have already begun, and the fate of the country may hang in the balance as these brash turks take on the big-money bought-and-paid-for establishment.
But we all have a part to play in this. Though it may be interesting to watch, it is our duty to act. Industry and their representative lobbies, PACs and SIGs are banking on the hope that you will not become active in the next Presidential election. That you will not write, call or march to make your voice heard. For sweeping ethical reform to take place in our government, it would mean no less then a citizen revolt, as there are so many billions already invested in entrenched politicians, including vast swaths of the GOP and many Democrats.
Hillary is proceeding so slowly and steadily, it appears she's at least monitoring the public, gauging how much she'll need to cater to us based on how loudly we make demands. I see Obama and Kucinich as more naturally representative of the public because they are still so idealistic and "audacious" to hope for better. But I fear they will remain minor candidates, or worse yet be subverted by the electoral process in which it's shown over and over that little else matters but major waves of focus-group tested TV and radio ads.
This was until YOU were voted Time's Person of the Year, that is. Now, you can demand better!