Sunday, February 24, 2008

Who's on first?

About this President thingy... with Ohio's primary coming up soon, I am going to be registering as a Democrat for the first time in my life.

GASP! you say, what's a nice Republican boy like you wanna do a thing like that for? I'm glad you asked. Let me just say this about that, a Republican in upstate New York and a Republican in southwest Ohio are two entirely different animals.

The other thing is, my world view has grown and matured (it sez here). Getting sober, getting married, and working in the corporate world have all changed my outlook on life.

Lastly, the GOP of my youth only vaguely resembles the party we see today. "Conservative" just doesn't mean what it used to.

And so, we come to the 2008 election. Despite my efforts editing this video about Hillary, I am not sure I can get behind her candidacy. The reason is Barack Obama. I believe Obama has a Kennedy-like charisma that can effect change in both foreign and domestic arenas.

Does he have a lot of experience? No. Let's not forget, Hillary hasn't been a senator all that long, either. In terms of experience in this context, being a first lady is better than nothing, to be sure, but not enough to be a deal breaker.

I think his lack of experience can be an advantage. He doesn't have the bad habits other candidates bring to the table, either.

Look, the President doesn't sit down with a calculator and a pot o' coffee and balance the budget (for example). He delegates such things to staff, like a good manager should. He considers the input of his staff of advisors and makes informed decisions. He then puts a face and a voice on those decisions.

And when it comes to face and voice, Obama has few peers. The man is a fuckin' rock star. People will follow this man. I believe he can heal some of the divide that has handcuffed the House and Senate for so long, and then they can get some real shit done.

I just don't see Hillary having that kind of pull. She is too much of a lightning rod -- people either love her or they hate her, there's very little in between. With Obama, even the folks who don't agree with his policies grudgingly admit he's difficult to dislike. Hillary could probably still get some things done by main force, but isn't that more of the same sort of politics we've sadly gotten used to? It's just the other side of the aisle.

I would have voted for John Edwards, but...

As regards John McCain: He has his positives. First of all, I admire his grit in withstanding being a POW. Anybody who survives that deserves honor. And I like the way he's not afraid to take a stand on issues that are unpopular with the party line.

But he has too many negatives. He's too damn old, for starters. That's not ageism, that's realism. I want a President who can go the distance. Unfortunately, he's gone the distance (ahem) with a few too many women for my liking, it would seem. That's fine for Joe Blow down the block, but not for the POTUS. A person who doesn't handle his personal relationships well isn't likely to handle international and domestic relationships very well, either.

I don't see McCain as a uniter, either.

My vote goes to Obama. Maybe in 2000, a guy like him wouldn't have done so well, but I think he's got what we need in 2008.


Harry said...

That's pretty much it in a proverbial nutshell. I'm still leaning ever so slightly towards Hillary, but that lean is getting slighter every day. My big concern about Obama is that we just really don't know him well. Hillary we probably know too well. But as of now, I'm still in Hilary's camp.

Bryan S. said...

Well said on all points. The cynic in me wonders about all the flash behind Obama. Politicians in general are just about universally evil enough to concern me as to whether or not we're being duped. Even with that possibility, though, he's obviously the best choice among the three legitimate challengers remaining. Hillary's a nightmare waiting to happen, and I agree with your points about McCain.