Friday, 11 July 2008

This Is The General People

As I look at the quite extreme bashing of Senator Obama from bloggers on the left and the MSM over his FISA vote, his analysis of Iraq, his reactions to the US Supreme Court's decisions re: the DC gun law and the death penalty for child rapists it occurs to me that most of this criticism seems to DEMAND ideological purity from Obama that he never espoused and in fact has from the beginning summarily rejected. In fact he has made his candidacy quite transparently as much as ANY other factor on his own belief that he can and WILL transcend the blue-red divide and actually accomplish progressive goals as opposed to meeting anyone's score on ideological perfection. I personally applaud Senator Obama for each of these decisions especially with his being entirely aware most of these stances would create sharp critique from the left. Do I agree with Senator Obama's position on each of this set of issues or indeed of any broad set of issues? No. Definitely not. That said, if I were to wait for a candidate who DOES, I would very likely never support anyone and in this case my belief is that I would be sacrificing a potentially great US president in Obama upon my own vain altar of what is right. Thankfully I am not burdened by a belief that my opinions reflect the best possible position on any complex issue let alone across a group of complex issues. Perhaps the best of these, as an example, is that I do not believe and neither did Obama believe that the telecom's should have been granted immuntity on FISA. In reviewing Obama's statement of his decision to vote for the final bill after voting to strip immunity and failing with three seperate failed amendments was that his vote was quite reasonable in the vein of not holding the good hostage to the perfect. In sum I don't think Senator Obama has shifted, lurched or even moved to the center since the primaries. Rather he has been exactly what he has always claimed to be, a new type of candidate intent on changing the way both politics and government is practiced.

Lonnie Thomason

(retired) Engineer

Rochester, NY area

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