Royal Pain

Being an American Royal can be tougher than being a British Monarch. At least over there, there's a job description - history provides a set of expectations. Here, as always, things are more vague. One has to carve one's own path.
Caroline Kennedy's latest trip under the spotlight as a Senate hopeful didn't get much better reviews than her first. A New York Daily News columnist said "the wheels of the bandwagon are coming off." New York Post state editor Fred Dicker already put her on his list of 2008 losers. And The New York Times said "she seemed less like a candidate than an idea of one: eloquent but vague, largely undefined and seemingly determined to remain that way."
The Caroline Debacle is confirming something that Americans fundamentally understand, because it is fundamental to the American experience. Aristocrats are pretty unexceptional other than their skill at choosing parents.
On Friday after weeks of silence, Kennedy agreed to sit down for interviews with The Associated Press and New York City cable TV's NY1. Over the weekend, she scheduled another round of interviews with other news organizations from the Times to the Buffalo News. The New York Daily News noted she frequently used the phrases "you know" and "um" during the interview, which was skewered in political blogs Monday.
Despite the huge institutional respect and honor bestowed upon Caroline, and the warm place she still holds in many hearts, she lacks the ability to follow the simple performance requirements for ordination.
"There has been some very rough comments," said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist College poll. "I have been surprised," he said. "The welcome mat has not been out from everybody."
Our distrust of the silver spoon is proving to be well-placed.
In interviews over the weekend, she offered explanations for running that included the 9/11 attacks on Manhattan, where she has lived since the 1960s, Barack Obama's encouragement, and the commitment to public service by her father, President John F. Kennedy, and others in her family.
How disappointing to discover that with her gifts of pedigree, cultivation and contact with the rich and powerful, Caroline is simply ordinary. Without much of an idea about why she wants power, or what she would do with it - we have to assume she would do little more than mindlessly support the talking points of the liberal establishment.
For some, that was reminiscent of a 1979 interview that helped undo her uncle's presidential campaign. Sen. Edward Kennedy didn't clearly explain why he wanted to be president much beyond citing family history when questioned by CBS newsman Roger Mudd.
Caroline's "candidacy" could dissipate as quickly as it arose. That's great news for the notion of democracy.