By Herald Meyerson
Thursday, March 6, 2008; Page A21
In “The Exterminating Angel,” a 1962 film by Luis Bu¿uel, the great Spanish anarcho-surrealist director, the guests at a dinner party find that, mysteriously, they cannot leave. Though there are no external constraints to their exiting, none can cross the threshold of the music room to which they’ve adjourned. For days and days they stay, some growing to hate one another, some lapsing into despair and most eventually determining to sacrifice their host in the hope that killing him will set them free. (They manage to get out before the host has been dispatched.)
Democratic voters awoke yesterday to find themselves living out a primary season alarmingly like Bu¿uel’s mordant fantasy. Nobody wished for a process that would roll on through summer or envisioned a contest in which the party’s constituencies were arrayed against each other, in nearly equal force and with only minor variations, in state after state after state. Nobody anticipated that two candidates with no great policy differences would battle it out to no readily apparent resolution. Yet that’s exactly what has happened. The Democrats are stuck.