A lot of theoretical nonsense is already being talked about the multiple meanings of Joe Biden’s pick of California Senator Kalama Harris as his vice-presidential running mate: She will be a tool for Israel, she will be an opening for reform, she will signify a new era, she will cunningly allow the neo-conservatives to infiltrate the Democratic Party.
All of it is nonsense, especially the last conspiracy theory. The neo-conservatives have no chance of penetrating either Harris or any possible Biden administration because their rival neoliberals – who hold identical views anyway but genuinely think they are different – are determined to keep all the prime jobs for themselves.
The truth about Kamala Harris is hiding all right – in plain sight. All the talking heads and political prognosticators of London and Washington cannot recognize an obvious reality even when it walks up to them and belts them across the head with a two by four heavy wooden plank. Kamala Harris is going to be Business as Usual. And today that has dire implications for the peace and survival of the world.
The great Sigmund Freud was right again: Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Joe Biden’s vice presidential pick follows the familiar U.S. political cliché of dressing up mediocre conformism – and continued Russia-bashing – in the hypocritical veneer that something wonderful and new is happening: She is Barack Obama all over again.
There is no mystery or dark secret in Harris’s background. Instead the ironies and paradoxes, while thick on the ground have always been in plain sight.
Paradox Number One: The possible first African-American lady vice president of the United States failed miserably in her own presidential campaign because she failed to pick up any significant support whatsoever from the African-American community, So did New Jersey senator Cory Booker. Instead, that support went to old “Sleepy Joe” Biden (as President Donald Trump with his unerring genius for nicknames that stick forever labeled the Great Hope for Liberal Renewal in America).
At a time when pundits from Washington to Moscow were writing off Biden as a dead duck, I pointed out repeatedly in these columns that the 40-million strong African-American community was staying loyal to him. So Biden, a white Democrat, won his party’s nomination because of black support that the African American community refused to give to the African American candidates in the race.
Paradox Number Two – Biden picked a candidate from a state he is sure to carry rather than from a Purple or “swing’; state. This is being repeatedly held up as a sign of how crazy Biden is. Sure he is crazy – crazy like a fox.
As a senator from the most populous state in the Union, Harris automatically carries national credibility or street-cred. She has a political weight that absurd little Mayor Pete Buttigieg from South Bend, Indiana or other political performing dwarves like entrepreneur Andrew Yang never had.
When senators or governors from California run on national U.S. election tickets either for president for vice president, they win elections. This has happened six times since the end of World War II – in 1952, 1956, 1968, 1972, 1980 and 1984. By contrast, unless your name is John F. Kennedy, if you come from the state of Massachusetts, as the feminists beloved Elizabeth Warren does, you suffer the same fate as John Kerry, Michael Dukakis and Mitt Romney – You lose. (Technically, President George Herbert Walker Bush came from Massachusetts, but he was in reality a Texas Man, body and soul all the way.).
Paradox Number Three – Kamala Harris’s very supposed weaknesses are her strengths: And cunning old Irish Joe Biden knows it.
Harris runs weak among African-Americans at the head of any ticket because her entire background has been as a law and order attorney general – at least by liberal West Coast standards – first in the city of San Francisco and then for the entire state of California. She held those two positions for 13 years before moving into the Senate. She knows how to debate those issues backwards. I predict she will shred Vice President Mike Pence, who came up in genteel, easygoing Indiana – in the vice-presidential debate.
Here is Paradox Number Four: Racism is indeed alive and w thriving in U.S. national elections, but for it to work it has to have a fig leaf of deniability. Whenever it is exposed in its true ugliness, I even its most avid practitioners – who are always cowards – run a million miles from it. Harris’s campaign will smoke them out.
To have a black lady senator from a major state with a Teflon record on law and order is a dream come true for the Democrats: It will boost them among independents and genteel Republicans across the United States who pay no attention to Trump’s policies and do not care a dime about War and Peace but who are repelled by the president’s tweets.
If Harris is reminiscent of any kind of generic lady political leader, it is Margaret Thatcher or Indira Gandhi. It does not matter if she knows nothing about any major issue: She will be decisive on it for good or ill. She will not pretend to be touchy feely like wimp male politicians who “feel your pain,” or among Republicans who pretend to. She will not hesitate to crack down on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib or Tulsi Gabbard. She may even try to drive them from public life if they dare to defy her.
And because Harris is a female, black Democrat, she will be able to get away with vastly more repression than any Republican president would dare to.
Paradox Number Five: Precisely because Harris got nowhere in her own presidential race will make her more effective, not less as a vice presidential candidate. For a national U.S. politician she is relatively young, still an attractive lady and she has wit and charm. She does not send people of every race, especially among the young, fleeing screaming in panic to the Exits the way Senator Elizabeth Warren does.
Make no mistake, if Joe Biden wins in November, Kamala Harris will be President of the United States. Not in eight years but very possibly in less than one.
Biden is 78 and his confusion issues in public are now painfully obvious to all, which is why the 65 million Americans who voted by reflex for both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton still refuse to acknowledge them. But they are there. and Biden is 78. At first the United States will be run by his chief of staff, which will be the real power position. But sooner rather than later, Kamala Harris will be President of the United States.
This is a prospect welcome and comforting to the Deep State. For Paradox Number Six is that they far prefer Kamala Harris as president to either Donald Trump or Joe Biden.
As I have also noted before repeatedly in these columns, the Deep State and the neocons have never liked or trusted Biden – to his great credit. Whatever his other shortcomings, it is a matter of historical record that Biden strongly urged President Barack Obama to pull all U.S. forces out of both Iraq and Afghanistan in early 2009, when Obama had just won the greatest Democratic national election victory in 44 years. At that point, Obama could have done anything, but instead with his usual amazing total lack of courage, conviction, energy and intellect, he chose to do – nothing. He should have listened to Old Joe.
Harris does not have that problem. Like many other successful U.S. legal prosecutors I have known, she thrives as an attack dog and appears to be entirely unreflective. Point her in the right (or wrong) direction and she will bite like a pit bull. That is why she will be such an effective main voice for the Democrats in the upcoming campaign. Like Theodore Roosevelt in 1900, Richard Nixon in 1952 and Biden himself in 2008, she will serve as Biden’s rottweiler
And this leads us to the seventh and most dangerous paradox of all: The same qualities (and lack of them) that will make Kamala Harris such a lethally effective attack campaigner for the Democrats over the next three months will make her a menace to the world as President of the United States.