Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Say It Ain't So, Joe Plumber Won 3rd Debate

Well.. say it ain't so. The winner of the third Presidential debate of 2008 was Joe Wurzelbacher, or "Joe the Plumber." This young Ohioan named Joe, whose recent exchange with Senator Obama regarding his tax options under an Obama administration, was thrust front and center and into the national spotlight. Obama's answer to old Joe's question about his taxes being increased caused quite a stir:
Obama said, "My attitude is that if the economy’s good for folks from the bottom up, it’s gonna be good for everybody. If you’ve got a plumbing business, you’re gonna be better off if you’re gonna be better off if you’ve got a whole bunch of customers who can afford to hire you, and right now everybody’s so pinched that business is bad for everybody and I think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody."
Seems as if old Joe's interaction with Obama has made him the 'face' of middle America. His plight actually focuses a huge laser beam on what ails this country, and who can be trusted to fix it.

How each candidate dealt with the subject of old Joe and the person of old Joe during this third and final debate, was quite telling and gave a vivid indication how each will govern if elected to serve the people.

First off, it was John McCain who initially made mention of old Joe... as a matter of fact, calling him out by his full name: Joe Wurzelbacher. McCain, in much detail, painted the picture for the listening audience of how Senator Obama's tax plan would hurt American dreams... such as Joes. And, in typical McCain style, he offered a direct and frontal approach, even going as far as to address old Joe square-faced to the television camera, assuring old Joe more money in his own pocket come January 2009, so he and his family could have increased opportunity to actualize the American dream.

Obama, on the other hand, addressed old Joe in a more colloquial manner... calling him "Joe the plumber"... and talking in more nuanced terms––coming off almost tepid in his response. Senator Obama lumped the dreams of old Joe with those of a hypothetical nurse, firefighter, teacher and others... into one big dream-pot. Obama then went on to speak, quite eloquently, of how his vision is for old Joe, and all the rest of those he mentioned, to be equal and be on equal footing as a result of his proposed spread the wealth around for everybody tax plan.

Two men... two very stark differences in approaches and positions. Who wins the election this year will more than likely boil down to how Americans see themselves in old Joe. Will voters continue to hold fast to the capitalist ideology: 'all my pie for me and mine'... or are Americans willing to move toward the Obama 'hope', 'change' paradigm: "I'll share my hard earned pie with others so that no one starves or goes without."

Facing the tough economic challenges that are sure on the horizon in this nation... are we ready to sacrifice-for-the-good-of-all, as that is what this election is all about in a nutshell. Everybody... think hard and long, then VOTE!

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