Thursday, July 19, 2007

# Posted 8:43 PM by Ariel David Adesnik  

WHO HAS A MAN-CRUSH ON FRED THOMPSON? The ex-Senator from Tennessee is on the cover of the latest New Republic. The story inside is of moderate length but rather short on substance, which is unusual for TNR. Instead, there is plenty of amateur psychoanalysis:
Among more serious journalists, The Weekly Standard's Stephen Hayes has developed a particularly intense man-crush on Thompson, penning a series of breathless valentines about the fledgling campaign, starting with a 6,000-word profile in April...

Nor is it only the conservative media getting high on the smell of testosterone. The creepiest musings about Thompson's "sex appeal" thus far have come from NBC's Chris Matthews, the machismo-obsessed id of the Washington media, who recently cooed: "Can you smell the English leather on this guy, the Aqua Velva, the sort of mature man's shaving cream, or whatever, you know, after he shaved? Do you smell that sort of--a little bit of cigar smoke?"
I read Hayes' profile of Thompson. It talked about policies, about ideas, and about Thompson's strategy of running as a straight-talker.

If you get past the pscyhoanalysis, the TNR cover-story provides a nice biography-in-brief of the non-candidate and his rise through Tennessee politics. And I have to admit, I didn't know Thompson had a nine-month old son or a wife twenty-four years his junior. Or for that matter, another son who is six years older than his wife and forty-six years older than his little half-brother.

I wonder how all of this will affect Thompson's (non-)campaign. It seems a lot more Hollywood then it does Tennessee.


(11) opinions -- Add your opinion

I'm a pretty conservative fellow on a variety of topics, though I'm not sure how being a conservative precludes meeting, falling in love with, and marrying a younger spouse?

That said, Thompson writes a lot, I've read a lot of what he has written, I like his points of view and I like the guy personally.

I'm confident that he'll run (and think he's smart to be holding back on announcing) and be a formidable candidate -- hell, he wouldn't be attracting so much derision if "they" weren't scared of him.
He also wouldn't be attracting so much derision if he didn't do things to attract derision.
So, you specialize in cryptology, do you, talboito? Or, do you have examples?
Well, sure as heck nobody with a Hollywood background could ever get elected president...
Anon 9:18, I appreciate what you're saying and I chose my words carefully. I suggested Thompson's personal life was more Hollywood than Tennessee. You can read that as "more liberal than conservative", but it's more about cultural images that cross party lines.

Somehow, it doesn't fit for the pick-up driving man-of-the-people to have a sort of trophy wife. Is that a fair comment, or even a substantive one? No, not really. I don't count it against Thompson. But image counts in politics.
'The story inside is of moderate length but rather short on substance, which is unusual for TNR.'

I have no great love for Thomas. But on the other hand, his wife is 40 years old. He's hardly robbing the cradle.
Hmm David, Perhaps Fred fits in the "Beverly Hillbillies" model? They went to Hollywood, moved into a mansion, but brought their trucks and values along with them! :-)
One nore thing about Wife V2.0: he was divorced for years *before* he met her. This isn't that important a detail, except to try to put a stake in the heart of the meme of "trophy wife" before it takes hold.

Thompson is not yet "my" candidate, but he has two things going for him: he's electable, and he doesn't have that "man on a horse" vibe I get from both McCain and Guliani.
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