Tuesday, May 22, 2007

It's Al Gore Week!

Al Gore was a candidate before his time. Twice.

First, he ran for president as a 39 year old, in 1988. He might have looked better in that tank than Michael Dukakis did, but Gore was not the right guy to follow the Gipper. No matter how much he was "raised for it," a fresh-faced kid from Tennessee just couldn't follow that vaguely god-like and (seemingly) good-natured grandfather from California. However disconnected, give us another gramps from another big state. So we got Texan Bush the First.

Then Gore ran again, thinking he could do what Bush the First had done -- follow the coattails of a popular president from Veep to the White House. But Clinton single-handedly crippled Gore's edge. It was Clinton who really riled up Ralph Nader enough to run and, in the end, shoot his poisoned dart into Gore's Achilles heal.

Now, it's Gore Week, Spring 2007 Assault on Reason Edition, following closely on the Summer 2006 Inconvenient Truth Edition. Now Gore is hitting the kind of stride and star power that does make a candidate golden. The Academy Award doesn't hurt. The globally fired up rock concerts called "Live Earth," coming up July 7, certainly don't hurt. Best of all: the rumors that Gore is likely to receive a Nobel Peace Prize for popularizing the plight of the planet.

And so this week Gore is making a media blitz to promote his new book, The Assault on Reason, which comes out today. In just the next three days, he'll be appearing on Larry King, David Letterman, Charlie Rose, Today, and probably Good Morning, America and a slew of other TV and radio spots. He'll also be signing books at a half dozen venues from NY to LA where advanced tickets, priced at about $40 (including the book), are sold out already.

So Fred Thompson can take a deep breath and sit back in his easy chair and be the Tennessee bench-sitter for a week. Maybe a few days of nobody asking Mr. Law & Order if he's going to run. It's back to Al, not so fresh-faced this time around, being asked if he'll run again -- and even, I am sure, TOLD to run again. He'll smile, wisk a signature onto your book, and not-so-subtle gestures amongst a slew of handlers will... keep the line moving.


At 5/22/2007 10:18 AM, Anonymous chaz b. said...

I read the NY times review of Assault this morning, and it's apparently not so much what Gore says as that it is Al Gore saying it. Bush bashing isn't new, and neither are takes on the marginalization of democracy in America, but as you're reminding us, it's Gore's growing star power and his added heat that are raising the profile of the message. Too bad it took him so long to go bold. Or maybe his timing IS good.

The messenger makes the medium.

You go, Gore!

take care, chaz b.


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