If there's any intersection of coffee and politics in the current convention season--other than the vast amounts of it being consumed--it's that both candidates are running for President of Starbucks Nation. It's a vision that I find fascinating, yet disturbing and ultimately ruinous. It's a nation of "posts"--post-industrial, post-family, post wealth-creation. Republicans, I'd argue, this time don't dare run candidates that tap into the animal spirits of their followers. They tried that last time at the bottom of the ticket, and it didn't work out so well for them. Why? It made them the laughingstock of Starbucks Nation, a byword for everything it despises.
Mitt Romney reminds me of nothing so much as a polished anchorman who has been handed a script and is doing his job. My skepticism about his chances for election lies mostly in the fact that Americans sure have elected a lot of bad presidents, but have never elected to the Oval Office an empty suit of the kind that this guy would be. At least not in my lifetime. I think the storyline is going to continue to be very similar to 2004's nail-biter--Romney's election will have a certain air of inevitability to it, but ultimately won't happen, leaving heads scratching. And I say that as someone who's been critical enough of the Obama 2012 campaign to feel almost vindicated by a Romney win.
Putting forward Romney is a repeat of the John Kerry candidacy. Regardless of the merits of the challengers--I like both as people and lesser office-holders--the desperation to displace the sitting President at any cost is fatal to the campaign's chances for success. More than one billionaire has announced his intention to spend whatever it takes, really, to beat Obama. And what's flawed is the assumption that anything can be bought if you just spend enough money. Steve Jobs and his successor haven't said, "We're going to spend whatever it takes to make sure 51% of the people choose our product over Android." Or do they? My perception is that Apple sticks to its guns with sometimes absurd tenacity, consumer experience be damned...
Money's no object + leave no compromise unmade = shittiest.product.ever. At least, so says me :-)