Thursday, August 28, 2008

Please Stay Tuned For This Party Political Announcement

Through much of the first half of the year, I was asked a lot about Barack Obama by people who know me as an American or people I don't know but who heard my accent. At first, of course, it was about Hillary Clinton and Obama, and then just about Obama. The name John McCain has rarely if ever been mentioned. Perhaps it's people knowing my politics, guessing my politics from what they know about me, or playing the averages because they believe Democratic voters are more likely to live overseas than Republicans. Whatever the case, interest seemed high only in those candidates who were the exceptions to the rule in American presidential politics: a woman and a black man.

I have a feeling that if the citizens of the world were allowed to vote, Obama would win in a walk. I might chalk that up to my own personal biases if it weren't for the confirmation we receive from his visit to Berlin. The citizens of the world don't vote, of course. But keep in mind that the decisions America makes affect how the rest of the world views it. The presidential election is the most-watched in the world--a cynic might say that's because it's an election in a major country that Americans actually pay attention to--and what Americans decide do affect us all, perhaps more than any other country. The saying in global economics is that when America sneezes, Britain catches a cold. By extension, now, you could put the 27 countries of the European Union in that same sickbay. And it seems almost certain that eight years of disastrous U.S. economic policy is about to put the UK into a recession, if it isn't already there.

Obama accepts his party's nomination tonight. It's a watershed moment in American politics. I could be more excited about it if I didn't have a bad feeling about November.

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12 Comments:

Blogger Middle Kid said...

Smitty, it's only a watershed moment because of the color of his skin. Call me a cynic, but I believe your "bad feeling" about November is based on the fact that no matter who is elected, it will basically be more of the same. Just look at the candidate's voting records on the major issues -- they are practically the same.

BTW, I would be saying the same thing if Senator Clinton was the Democratic nominee.

3:34 PM  
Blogger Middle Kid said...

Oops. That should read "candidates'"

3:35 PM  
Blogger Smitty Werbenmanjensen said...

The bad feeling I have is more about the fact that I fear he will lose. And a bad president is worse than a half-bad president.

3:57 PM  
Blogger Middle Kid said...

Are you sure that's what your bad feeling is? Or is it the knowledge that it just doesn't matter who wins. The U.S. is a government of the corporations, by the corporations, and for the corporations.

5:32 PM  
Blogger Smitty Werbenmanjensen said...

Yup. I remain certain that an Obama administration will be more than marginally better than a McCain administration. Was the Clinton administration better than any of the three Bush administrations?

Politics in a democracy is always a game of choosing the good over the perfect. I choose not to let the latter be the enemy of the former.

5:38 PM  
Blogger The Verderer said...

I don't know if that's even the choice right now. I think it's more like choosing "pretty much like the last 8 years" over "exactly like the last 8 years." I'm going to vote for Obama, since we have a two party system. I'm just not going to jump on the "Obama as Messiah" bandwagon. I think the left-moderates are supporting him on faith alone, not on any substantive evidence. The liberals are not even given a chance to have their say, given the remote "free speech" areas and the brutal treatment of the protesters at the DNC.

6:00 PM  
Blogger Middle Kid said...

That was my comment. It's obviously way too cynical even for a 12-year-old related to me! He's been using my computer, apparently.

6:03 PM  
Blogger Smitty Werbenmanjensen said...

Never treat a politician as a messiah. It only leads to disappointment. Support a politician you believe is the best for the job, and always make sure you let them know when he/she screws up.

Bill Clinton was the best president of my lifetime. Gutted welfare along the way. Did virtually nothing on global warming. But he was still far better than what came before and after.

10:12 AM  
Blogger oldest kid said...

I have to agree with Smitty. Obama won't be perfect and he will certainly disappoint us, but he will be better than McCain. Look at what has happened over the last 8 years. I firmly believe that we would be much better off if Gore had become our president 8 years ago.

2:09 PM  
Blogger Middle Kid said...

I hope all of you are right and I am wrong.

4:15 PM  
Blogger Kevboy said...

Ninety eight percent of the adults in this country are decent, hardworking, honest Americans. It's the other lousy two percent that get all the publicity. But then, we elected them.
-Lily Tomlin

9:22 PM  
Blogger Schmutz said...

I was really confused about the Verderer comment. I even checked back to see if I was mistaken about his identity. And then I read MK's comment and said "whew."

12:11 AM  

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