As a kid, I used to devour the Newsweek issue that came out just after the Presidential elections and told the inside stories of the campaigns.  All that’s changed as I’ve gotten older is that I can devour them faster, on the Internet, including this little teaser for an upcoming Atlantic piece about the Clinton campaign.    A couple quick thoughts:

This focus of the reaction to this story will surely center on the campaign’s decision to try to paint Obama as unacceptably foreign.  But I’m also curious to see the reaction to the claim that the Clinton campaign went into a “meltdown”, full of “anger and toxic obsessions.”

Such language makes me hesitate, because it sounds awfully close to saying that Clinton’s campaign failed because the candidate was such a crazy woman.  The articles I read as a kid almost always noted that the dignified, presidential candidate had a nasty temper. (Hey, I was a kid.  That was surprising! They looked so nice on TV! )  It was rarely cited as a reason the candidate lost.  Hell, half the time the winners are jerks, too.

Earlier in the campaign the rumors were swirling that Clinton’s problem was simply that her campaign had been banking on the race being over by Super Tuesday and were sorta surprised this Obama dude hadn’t gone away yet: a failure of strategy, not of personality.

Moreover, my ex recto sense of the campaign season isn’t that Clinton lost nearly as much as Obama won.  His campaign put together a really smart strategy, seeming to be the first campaign that really got that it was about delegates, not the popular vote.

So I’m hoping the final analysis has more to say about why the campaign fell apart, because it’s very easy to let pre-conceived notions about the character of the candidate shape the entire story.   And what’s particularly troubling in this case is that we know that angry men and angry women are perceived differently, and that angry women are thought of as less competent.

So when you read Joshua Green’s analysis when it comes out, do me a favor and just keep it in the back of your head: would the analysis of Clinton’s campaign be the same if she were male?