Rally

There’ve been a lot of presidential candidates coming to Grinnell recently. I haven’t gone, though, because I have a lot of work, and that doesn’t so much prevent me from going as it limits my face-to-face interaction with persons, so I don’t find out about them. Mitt Romney came, as did Joe Biden. I didn’t go to either of those. Today, though, I went and saw Barack Obama talk. Yep, right here at the college, in the Harris Center for those of you who are familiar with the place. I went at 1830, just as the thing was starting, and was disappointed to find myself shunted into an overflow theater. There was a live audio feed from the full concert center just across the hall. There was also a screen, but nothing was being projected onto it. I thought, “This sucks pretty comprehensively,” and stood in the hall, only to be told that I wasn’t allowed to stand in the hall. So I made to leave, but as I did, a door from the entryway into the concert hall was opened, and I and a few other people snuck in through there.

The entire room was filled, so it was good planning to have Obama on a raised platform. He made a rather good speech about how we need to leave behind the politics of pandering and start doing what’s right. Of all the candidates I’ve heard of, Obama is the only one I can support. This is probably mainly because I’ve heard very little about the other candidates. The Obama faction is pretty active in Grinnell, postering on all the walls and bathrooms. The posters I’ve read describe him as a really honest guy, who gave a carbon-reduction speech in Detroit because he wasn’t going to make two different speeches in California and Detroit. I know next to nothing about the Republican candidates; they don’t really get much attention in Grinnell. But Obama seems like a guy with real goals and a real plan, whereas the rest of the candidates are “Not George W. Bush!”.

I realize this bit of politics is extraordinarily biased and that I could do with knowing more about the rest of the contenders, but I think there’s at least some grain of truth in it. Obama’s a good guy.

File under: politics


Anonymous

History

Hooray for you! Glad you got to see and hear Barack there. He’s my candidate, and I’m glad to hear you thought so well of his speech. I’ve been watching all the candidates and have seen no one, either party, who has his freshness and candor. But he’s got an uphill battle trying to wrest the nomination from Hillary. Hope he can do it. Hope you are not studying too hard, but I know you have a lot on your plate right now. Grandma

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Chuck

History

[This comment originally sent to me by Mom in an email, because her firewall at work blocks commenting.]

I don’t know too much about Obama- need to see his position on life. I have heard some things about him but can’t validate much. From what I can tell, though, I don’t see that he has much experience or practical know-how in how to deal with Iraq. But I can go with a candidate starting from- will they respect life and cultivate a sense of value of it? The fact that there are 6.5 billion of us now should not negate the value of even one of us. In other words, each person is as valuable in a world of 6.5 billion as they would be in a world of 1000. There is too much of a mercantilistic value put on a human being, and I believe as human beings we are of infinite value and thereful can’t be quantified in terms of numbers or contribution to the GNP or how much one individual contributes to society financially or socially or in any way. So there, then, is what I say. I must say I have not been entirely impressed with any of the leading contenders. They say Huckaby is up there now in Iowa and he was on the back burner until recently. To be fair, I would try to get to see at least one of the Republicans.

I can go with low taxes or high taxes as long as it’s a system that WORKS. If I’m taxed out the wazoo, I want to know that my money is going for a cause that I believe in- build roads, make good schools, don’t give it to lobby groups…make it worth it. So far, though, under Democrats, I have seen a lot of MY money squandered. Bush gave me a more sizeable chunk of my money back. Not that he hasn’t wasted money, too.

The whole hate-Bush thing, I’m old enough now that I can tell you that when I was in college it was EXACTLY the same, with the liberals and the demos hating Reagan, another 2-term president. They criticized his economic plan, trickle-down theory, etc. All the pundits were out talking about it just the same as today.

“Ray-gun is too old to run.”

I remember students putting graffiti everywhere, etc. When I was in Colombia EVERYONE was railing against Reagan.
Everyone thought he’d get us into a nuclear war. There was this whole thing going on in Libya and people thought he was a huge warmonger and insincere and just a good ol’ boy. Heck I didn’t and still do not agree with the bombing in Tripoli.
Then he helped bring down the wall.
Then legend grew and it became bigger than himself, as years later people reminisced about “The Reagan Years” and “Reaganomics”.
I believe something similar will happen to Bush. In a liberal college you are unlikely to hear anything positive about him, and I know that, especially since I was in a college not known for liberalism and I still heard it all the time against Reagan. The best thing is to look behind the spin for ANY politician and in Bush’s case, behind his annoying way of talking (seems he is always chiding whoever asks him a question, but it’s his mannerisms that really bother people though they don’t know it- he is awful at public speaking and needs to take a Toastmaster’s class).

Try to ignore the spin and see what a candidate is really about.

IMHO-


MOM

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Chuck

History

Yeah, I’m studying pretty hard, and I do have a lot on my plate. I have to write a paper tonight, and possibly two, and more papers and such over the weekend. Friday is going to be pretty nice. The last day of finals is going to be even nicer.

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Anonymous

History

Wow! some people won’t ever get it about Bush and taxes. All republicans do is pay interest on ten trillion dollars of debt. why bother taxing people when we can just pay the minimum monthly dues.

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Anonymous

History

Ok, time for my opinion on politics. This is a crystallized version.

Rome is burning, to some degree at least.

Most don’t see it, or care, proven in voter apathy.

Nothing will change SUBSTANTIALLY until at least 80% of people vote, ALL of the time….or there is an entire collapse of the economy, or more specifically the american consumer. I believe it to be near.

Brand X and Y are too similar, and nobody votes via conscience, because that has been sold to USA inc., lobbyists, intrest groups, etc. You already know what all of the candidates will do. It depends who gave the most.

Subatance is gone, style is all that is left. Style ala Reagan or Kennedy, the ability to lead via inspiration is more powerful than gridlock.

I believe two candidates have this potential. Obama and Rudy.

Dont’ mistake this for pessimism, it actually gives me hope!

This country needs real change, and it’s coming.

Dave

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