John Edwards's holiday ad has a bit of a sting to it:
I like it. But then I'm probably biased: although I think there are several Democrats who'd make a good President, I think that on the issues I'm probably most in agreement with Edwards. I just wish I had more faith in the quality of his organization — who you come into power with has proved to matter almost as much as who you are. (From that point of view, Obama may have a small edge; Clinton has the most carefully tuned machine — but is it tuned to the right pitch?)
I used to say that I had a lot of trouble swallowing Edwards's views on trade. I'm still dubious of his protectionist instincts, but I think that the trade deals — especially some of the bilaterals — we've entered into in the past few years are on balance not good for us or for our counter parties. They seem designed to lock in certain ideas of industrial structure, labor relations, and other (anti)social policies in order to put them outside the reach of democratic processes. So while I may not agree with Edwards's philosophy here, many of his specific criticisms seem more on target now than they did four years ago.