Monday, March 10, 2008

Prognosis Negative

Larry David:

He [Obama], with the ice in his veins, who doesn't panic when he's losing or get too giddy when he's winning, who's as comfortable in his own skin as she's uncomfortable in hers.

George Costanza's alter-ego is always right, in his own perpetually bewildered and, well, flappable sort of way. And I agree with his prognosis negative, about which I wrote at some length here:

It was a little painful to watch Hillary Clinton yesterday, as she was competing against Obama's charisma and popular appeal. He was a poised and assertive gentleman, listening thoughtfully, smiling slightly when the occasion called for it. It was a perfect pitch performance from a presidential aspirant.

She, on the other hand, seemed overly concerned with coming through as confident and authoritative. And she achieved the opposite effect. Her body language does not bespeak self-confidence but rather some turmoil. Smiling too widely (and defensively) when Obama was making some comment about her. One can get away with one such smile. But not when it becomes the standard non-verbal response to a challenge. Then bursting into maniacal laughter when Wolf Blitzer asked her a provocative question or two. And repeating that burst of affected laughter a minute of two later. That kind of behaviour does not denote confidence. It rather signals weakness...

Hillary is like Kynaston, exerting herself to look confident, aggressive, slightly superior, a woman with iron balls, so to speak. She ends up looking somewhat pathetic and insecure, an effete Othello..

Obama does not need all this. He is like Maria. Comfortable in his own skin. He wears no mask. So he can actually do the work, while she is still entangled with her image problems.


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