I saw a quote in Sunday's paper about Rick Santorum having high expectations for his chances in today's states: Colorado, Minnesota and Missouri. I'm afraid, dear reader, that I giggled.
It had nothing to do with the states involved – just the notion that Santorum was raising high expectations about much of anything, anywhere. So far he just doesn't have the numbers in votes or money or percentages; maybe expectations are the only thing he can raise. Is he dreaming? Is he delusional? Is he hopelessly optimistic? Or is he making a adman's last pitch?
Politics these days is a little like those giant clothing ads you see in the paper: 20% off; no, 30%; no, 50% - until you finally realize your are getting 80% off. It's meant to get you to reach for something you hadn't thought about, don't want and don't need – but the deal is too good to resist. The ads may have had the same tone 150 years ago; the politicians were very different. It's a little hard somehow to imagine this silliness from a Jefferson or an Adams or a Madison.
Something has happened to our politics. What's the old saying? It describes a diplomat as an honorable man who is willing to lie for the good of his country. With politicians – and not just with Santorum, with the lot - we seem to have gone way past that.
This old reporter loves politics so much that sometimes it can feel like a game. This is serious stuff in serious times.Come on, guys, let's head back toward the straight and narrow.