by Guest blogger - E. Barbara Phillips; Berkeley, CA
There are 10 reasons why I will vote for the winner––Barack Obama— this year. It will be the first time, in my long voting career, that I will have voted for a winner. In the past, I have voted my conscience, starting with not voting for John F. Kennedy, but then taking my first professional job with one of his appointees, Edward R. Murrow, who served as head of the United States Information Agency.
Over the years I have rued the two-party system in this country, or to describe it in a more appropriate term: “Tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum” as coined by deaf-and-dumb… but very astute… Helen Keller). And while on occasion I voted for 3rd party alternatives, I kept my integrity, as I was often times appalled at these election results—e.g., Nixon and the Bushes pere et fils, (French for father and son).
However, this time I have picked a winner. No, I may not like Senator Obama’s zigging and zagging trying to get to the center. (I sometimes wonder if a Clinton is advising him). But, like it or not… I have resigned myself to hold my nose and vote for him.
For those who want to know why… here are my top 10 reasons. These reasons reflect a combination of emotional as well as logical:
10. He’s not Bush or McCain. (And, I hope he’s not ‘Clinton-lite’… or Clinton-dark… pardon the pun).
9. He is smart and savvy, and committed to public/private service. He worked in Chicago as a community organizer, eschewing top jobs on Wall Street to work at the grass root level: the streets.
8. His wife, Michelle, is smart and savvy too. How could she not be with a father who was a precinct captain during the first Daley regime!
7. The global standing and reputation of the United States is at an all-time low. I believe the very presence of Barack Obama, as head of the most powerful nation in the world, will improve our standing globally, as people across the world will pay attention and give him a chance.
6. His message of ‘Hope’, ‘audacity’, and ‘getting involved to make this country better’ is a much more appealing message than killing, capitalist greed, and other policies of the past umpteen years.
5. Once and for all, the Rev. Jesse Jackson will leave the national scene.
4. Barack Obama is classy. For example, he did not mention his mother’s living on food stamps during the primaries… and he could well have done that. But instead, he kept his composure as Hillary Clinton transformed herself into the standard-bearer of the working-class (although she hailed from Park Ridge, IL … not poor and well-educated. Really!)
3. Senator John McCain, by his own admission, is an economic light-weight. And… while General Wesley Clark took a hit for saying what he did (i.e., being a POW doesn’t make you a foreign policy expert), he was right in my view. McCain has cozied up to some very bad folks over the years, starting with the famous Keating of the Savings and Loan scandal, who bankrolled his first Arizona Senate campaign. Granted, a person’s private life should not be related to his or her public service at all, but… when politicians bill themselves as the candidate of morality, then they should demonstrate that same standard in all dealings and transactions!
2. I’d rather take my chances with a pig-in-a-poke such as Obama… than proceed with eyes-wide-open… knowing what I’d be getting with McCain (more of the same old stuff… when new ideas are called for!) I’ll take David Axelrod, from Chicago, over McCain’s constantly-changing staff …any day. (And no, I’m not happy about Obama’s selection of Jason Furman as his key economic guy… but we shall see). And finally…
1. The vision of Sasha and Malia Obama sashaying around the White House makes me smile!