Monday, January 7, 2008

John Brown backs Obama... Barely... Ideas vs. candidates and how do you separate the two...

I have an idea of what I'd be getting with an Obama victory, but it's not a very clear one. This process is supposed to be providing me with a clearer picture. At the very least, it should be giving me the clues necessary to assemble that picture. It isn't. It's giving me a Legend instead of a Candidate.

Now that Joe Biden is out of the race, I'm left to choose between Clinton, Edwards and Obama (assuming all three last until the exercise in formality/futility known as the Kansas primary occurs).

Clinton is a non-starter for me. I'd go into detail here, but I'd like to wrap this post up within two hours. I have my reasons and they are numerous. I could go over to the R guys. Yeah, right. Again, I don't have the space.

Edwards is the candidate I would've appreciated about fifteen years ago. That's when I was a little more keen on railing against concepts closely associated with the dreaded Man. Attacking corporations and assorted other devilish fat cats would've resonated with me. His fairly recently adopted "mad dog fighter who takes it personally" thing would've felt just right. I would've been keen on the divisiveness and the outrage. Fifteen years ago.

I'm older now. Hopefully smarter. That's probably why I was holding out a tiny bit of hope that the Biden campaign would be viable. I liked Joe because I appreciated the way he seemed to think things through. I liked the idea of a President who had a working knowledge of the people, systems, places and concepts that would be at the core of difficult decision making. He was far from perfect, but he seemed like the brightest option.

If Clinton reeks to me and Edwards' outlook and approach seems a little politically immature (not to mention counterproductive in a world where reason too often takes a backseat to partisanship), it's fairly obvious that I've become an Obama Man. Hell, his momma is even from my home state. Slam dunk, right?

Not really. And this is where this very long post really begins...

My first impression of Obama was positive. I started tracking him out the corner of my eye even before he gave his now-famous keynote address at the convention. By the way, I think that speech, though good, was wildly overrated. Right off the bat, I liked the guy. At that time, I liked him as a guy who'd be a nice addition to the Senate. The rock star thing wasn't happening for me.

Since then, I've seen the reactions. I've heard some pretty good oration. I've read both of his books. I've found something in the guy that I really do like. He combines a pretty keen wit with some over-arching beliefs with which I concur. He seems like a good guy who wants to elevate the quality and substance of American politics.

I can't really explain how much difference that makes to me. It's a big deal. That idea of breaking out of the normal bifurcative arrangement that dominates our politics is incredibly appealing. I am, if nothing else, a hater of bullshit. Our demented system of spin and lie makes me sick. Obama's apparent willingness to work on a different level--one governed by reason and sensibility--clicked with me.

That's when I started thinking a bit more seriously about the junior Senator. He was pitching a unique product and I was definitely buying.

Then something started to happen. Sucked into the vortex of a presidential run, the Obama message of a higher standard and a desire to apply real thinking to issues in place of R/D pre-fabricated frameworks started to wane. Instead, Obama and his supporters seemed a lot more interested in a few other concepts... Hope and Change.

Hey, I'm pro-hope. I'm pro-change (if it's good change). When Bill Clinton talked about a place called Hope in just the right way, it made at least one of my eyes a little misty. If you're advocating change from the current work-in-the-dark administration with its obvious fear of question and challenges, I'm backing change all the way.

The issue, however, is that I'm not really sure what kind of hope and change Obama is talking about any more. It's gone from a pretty well-explained approach to government that embraced core traditional democratic ideals and combined them with a willingness to build working non-partisan relationships in pursuit of effective action to being a rather amorphous mess of campaign ad material.

Obama has become less a candidate and more a symbol.

A high school kid named Ben Turner says:

"For me, Barack Obama is a symbol of what's to come, of an entire movement... Just like MLK [Martin Luther King Jr.] was a symbol for the civil rights movement, Barack Obama is a symbol of his movement."

Mychal Massey wrote an anti-Obama piece in which he stated:

"It is true that Obama is a symbol of the change Americans want in government. He is a symbol of that which Americans are tired of and now want changed."

Rosa Brooks of the LA Times argued:

"...Obama is a symbol of hope to Americans desperate for politics that transcend barriers of race, class and ethnicity."

A pro-Bill Richardson blog offered:

"Barack Obama is a symbol of re-birth and interconnectedness – a beautiful thing for a country desperate to prove that the rest of the world can believe in it again."

Obama is a symbol. He also offers hope.

What do I mean by that? I have no fucking idea. But let me tell you this. If you Google "Obama offers hope" (in quotation marks so you get exact matches), you'll find about 500 people saying it. OBAMA OFFERS HOPE.

Hope for what? Who the hell knows anymore?

Somewhere along the line, Obama stopped being a man and became a myth. He's no longer a junior Senator with a few ideas about improving government, a strong intellect, and leadership skills. He's a empty vessel of a messiah into which so many are pouring a lot of hopes and dreams. He's the blank slate upon which you can paint your own political wet dream in vibrant color.

I don't want to discount the importance of values and overall direction when making choices. Ben Sutherland, another local blogger, just posted a great piece about real strength as a nation and its connection to our most sacred values. I'm just a little bit more than a wee bit dissatisfied with those discussions occurring in only the most amorphous ways without a clear understanding of how a candidate plans on tap into their power. Hope, change, freedom, democracy, movement, progress... Sweet Baby Jesus in a Cadillac, folks, connect the dots between them and your actual plans for Social Security, Iraq, Issue X, Issue Y, etc!

I have an idea of what I'd be getting with an Obama victory, but it's not a very clear one. This process is supposed to be providing me with a clearer picture. At the very least, it should be giving me the clues necessary to assemble that picture. It isn't. It's giving me a Legend instead of a Candidate. It's giving me Hope and Change. I don't know if that's enough.

The funny thing is that the Clinton people aren't bright enough to figure this whole thing out. There's a real argument they could make about the empty vessel candidacy that whipped Hillary in Iowa, but they go after it with the ham-fistedness of a high school student council candidate.

They've almost tried with the "experience" argument. Talk about a limp proven loser of an argument... As a billion people have undoubtedly noticed, Obama isn't at a serious experience disadvantage in the real world.

In fact, the whole "nobody really knows shit about Obama" thing has somehow morphed into a positive. Lynn Sweet puts it like this:

"Obama's inexperience is being seen as less and less of a liability. He won't have a series of Senate votes to hold against him. He won't be caught in the Kerry trap of explaining why he was for something before he was against it. After more than a year in the Senate, Obama is not identified as the solo owner of an issue."

Clinton started to get a little closer after Iowa. On the night where we could all watch both parties embarrass themselves in New Hampshire, she started talking about the difference between wanting change and being able to produce change. Getting closer, Hillary, but not there yet.

And it won't ever really get there, because hammering those issues would require a certain kind of substantiveness that Hillary lacks. Meanwhile, Edwards could give a shit. He's got the auto-pilot on. He's full-bore Angry Lefty Populist until he finally loses. He's dialed into some weird course that either leads to a massive crash and burn or a win. (Odds favor crash and burn 2,500:1).

Meanwhile, the rock star thing keeps happening. There's no reason to see it stopping, either. The Blue State explains the way it will probably unfold, at least for awhile:

"Then there is Barack Obama. You can bet Republicans will go after his lack of experience. But when Obama responds by saying that Abraham Lincoln only had two years of Congressional experience before he ran for president, Americans will listen. They will pay attention to a youthful-looking, energetic man like Obama because he sounds genuine, and he can disagree on an issue without sounding disagreeable. He is a mainstream Democrat on just about every single issue -- as was John Kerry. But unlike the Massachusetts Senator, Obama is capable of winning elections because he knows how to make people listen."

I don't believe in voting on personality. I don't like voting for an Idea when I should be thinking about the bag of skin and brain to which the Idea is attached. I don't like joining cults of personality and I get sick and fucking tired of hearing people talk incessantly about Obama's ability to inspire and motivate when no one is thinking too hard about what in the hell he'd inspire or motivate anyone to do.

At the same time, you can't fault a dude for being popular. I'm left in a rather uncomfortable situation, to tell you the truth. I've liked the real things I've heard from Obama, for the most part. When he does talk about issues outside of orator/inspirer mode, I tend to think he's on-track. I just wish I could hear more of that. I wish I could see more of the seemingly bright and considerate author of those two books.

I might be an exception to the rule among the electorate, but I think I might like that Obama more than I like SUPERSTAR OBAMA. I'm not sure, though, because we're in a campaign and he's riding a super-swell of popularity that has little to do with him and everything to do with what he's believed to represent.

I guess I'm in the Obama camp. I'm just not necessarily comfortable there.


Technorati Tags: Tags:

Furl Tags:


  1. I totally agree, dude. In fact, as I'm sure you probably sense, I think this will be a liability down the line. False messiahs are always bound to disappoint. And that is the risk of the campaign, right now. You're instincts are very similar to mine, here, John. I guess I know where I agree with Obama on policy that he's articulated and know where I disagree and just have accepted that where he may have his rock star image tarnished for those who jumped on his bandwagon, I'm supporting a candidate that I agree with on big issues - diplomacy with rogue nations over threatening and leveraging our way into oblivion is my main point of agreement with Obama on the issue I prioritize highest (international security) - disagree on big but less important issues to me - I don't want to see a whole host of health care mandates from any of the Democratic candidates, but I'm more interested in a less provocative foreign policy from any of the Presidential candidates - and I choose Obama as my pick as the best of the bunch. Biden is my second choice for reasons we've discussed. But I completely share your disgust with a process that gets so wrapped up in personality and horse race and mythology and all the bullshit that animates elections other than reasoned and empirical debate and discussion. And you are dead-on right, John, that this is a weakness right now in the Obama campaign that will likely come back to bite him if he doesn't start talking up his most serious strength - his capacity to think independently and outside the box about policy alternatives - and instead banking on his oratory.

    I have so much to say on this, John, but I am exhausted, at the moment, and will have come back to this.

    This is what I hated about forensics, dude. Flash over substance.

    Hopefully Obama will provide more substance to make it worth our while.

  2. By the way, John, I appreciate what I realize is an unmet challenge for me to articulate my own ideas about issues like health care, education, the environment, etc. more clearly. I don't want to leave you with the impression that I'm all abstraction. I think I have a pretty clear idea of where I think we should go and how we should get there, even if I find the contemporary political climate hostile to that direction. I haven't written or talked about it in awhile and I should. This is why I need your help on this book, John. Because you'll hold my ass to the fire on that kind of stuff.

    Nice to have you back, by the way.

    1. a reaction to black -n- sweetJune 18, 2015 at 3:58 PM

      Its 1978, and a whiter than white teenager named David Roy Pescatore buys disco records. "Its For You" by "Munich Machine". Any by L. Anderson? Not sure. But I have the photos.

  3. Throw baboon Barack in jail. Lets get it done.

  4. public face: Mr. Obama is a good guyJune 18, 2015 at 4:52 PM

    private face: ) x : he smells of watermelon.

  5. ESA/DRPart fan- now everyone "in the know"June 19, 2015 at 7:38 AM

    Laurie Anderson "Homeland"- John Waters."Walter" was in the sports blog thread discussing DC hits.

  6. grotesque Bushes hogging up govt perks, I agreeJune 19, 2015 at 7:48 AM

    P.S. Is the Bush crime dynasty (cheating, corruption & mass-murder like Pan Am flight 103. US shot down Libyan airliner in '86) really mooching off the government with all of those perks ? Are they grabbers? Maybe they need to open their wallets more. There's a start.

  7. More moochers! But Bushes come in first place for moochingJune 19, 2015 at 7:52 AM

    Let us not forget Ella Fitzgerald (First lady's mama) & the hidden cousin.

  8. Phila Daily newsJune 19, 2015 at 8:09 AM


  9. birds, bees...and Louise...June 22, 2015 at 9:13 AM

    The old man keeps jumping out of airplanes. Why don't they just push the old loud bastard off a cliff. he might fly. The son is quiet , that is his 5'th amendment right. The Bush way is this: be personable-as if you were a salesman at a clothing store. Bring god, love & compassion into the conversation. Pubic hair people-with crabs.

  10. Bushes don't want u 2 wear jeans in The White HouseJune 22, 2015 at 9:34 AM

    Put a mafia man in charge of a mega-trade bill. Think his name is Paulie Ryanelli. The deal is written with the blood of Obama's victims. This is the easy way. Not legitimate. So shocking even Mr. Ed lost his voice! Restore The Constitution. Restore US credibility. Put the ape behind bars. Then pass a trade bill. It would be a win-win for everyone. Countries will want to trade with a country that actually stands for something. Do you really want to be apart of Obama's race-terror ? That is a permanent part of his history-and now your history. It is his legacy the way 9/11 is part of the Bush crime family legacy. You are going about it the wrong way, power people . Something peculiar out there shined the light. Thank you, beautiful xxmale !

  11. Brand USA is damaged goods. I want my taxpayer money back ! Upperincome people pay alot in taxes. We carry the whole country on our backs.Its not for some nigger to murder little kids. They put special devices under Obama's mud rug telling him what to say. They even have a picture of Obama in front of books to reinforce the image that he's a smart one (Must be the white in him. But his mom was a phreek). Washington still does not know how they gotta lift up this Oprah Winfrey nigger. Murdered innocent people openly in cold blood. We still have to look at him. But all we see are eyes and teeth ! Still have the Norman Rockwell painting outside the Oval Office, Mr. Obama?

  12. South Carolina is mysticalJune 22, 2015 at 10:17 AM

    Keep the Confederate Flag as a way to honor States' rights.

    1. nigger nigger on the wallJune 22, 2015 at 4:43 PM

      Expect more pretty speeches from President Obama. The monkey will pose- and talk. We all know black on white crime is nonexistent.

  13. I agree with STOP comment. Notice comments only start to appear whenever anyone has the courage to leave a message or two. The rich carry the tax burden in America. I also agree with NSA policies .I read an article on The NSA by one of the Pescatores. Bulk collection of data is legal and just. For security and historical reasons. No different than the Library of Congress.Anything you do on the Internet is public. Notice noetic David's photographs on the Internet ? S/he does not leave any trace. No photos, no comments-nothing. No need. S/he wants to remain secret. Governments should be allowed to have secrets, too. What is objectionable is Mr. Obama engaging in spying and terrorism to prevent leaks of him engaging in homosexual behavior. He opened the country. His perverse actions are difficult to defend. While stability is important, he continues to murder and then there are the retaliation murders. He's like one big black hole. Brand USA is weakened because the nation is increasingly behaving like South America during the 70's and 80's. The NSA finds itself pushed into a corner. If Obama were to resign the NSA could start an aggressive public relations campaign designed to educate.

  14. What I mean by David remaining a secret is private.Wrong choice of words. Everyone has the right to remain private.

  15. No such thing as noetics, either.

  16. 550934784395097950409345940568940405940940940956404950495409540940959569696746207854735786475647547757574046900588730594-956462850-567069057985004-5604-504-5034-038980099878463838385068243344-54-5-6June 24, 2015 at 8:55 AM

    3988549495869056-0760-60-934949457684536276970365748560785747387487384738748385649689489568498694856948237776907507950593874386321565 27436756476574689578089698649787536437462626534265326342654457467596750786089-7807-8970089454523967867623098822226455687907808-8097655534478289292902999957768705034-5034-06-5060707070707858584756345078549492302-2-2-203238282827465786865689695055090600660060337272097435272758959590607679060976079606474725250786987025789497

  17. Replies
    1. jry i kv ^ + // wfw : ' "June 25, 2015 at 6:46 AM


  18. Wilburrrr ...when President Shrub-I mean Flush -I mean Bush-blows the candles out on his birthday cake, make sure he uses just his famous Bush nigger nostrils. And to think I only came out here today to have a nice "lite lunch" and some Oprah nigger tea at Starbucks.

  19. Oh-that's FORMER President Bush I might add. FORMER President-but STILL a terrorist-and an asshole (psst-ricin Las Vegas motel 28 feb 2008-but your good people).

    1. -and a harasser. Cops in Texas have a very polite nickname for the Bush family.

    2. Wilburrrr-wash your hands-you don't know where Bush's gloves have been!

  20. America, you really need to elect Trump as president. You do not need another Bush for president. Another Bush recession, more US-terrorism just to prop up their pubic name, more propaganda. I like some of the other candidates, but Trump will ultimately do what is ethical and best for the country. Let the Bushes jump out of planes so their nigger nostrils will grow and grow and grow and more nigger nostrils presidents!

  21. lmao ! NIGGER NOSTRILS? What comes to mind when Mr. Bush was ducking the shoes thrown back at him. Why isn't he in jail, Mr. Ryan? There's NSA evidence-and more.

  22. Cokie -the natural druggieJuly 7, 2015 at 12:58 PM

    The super big Bush nostrils are nature's way of helping Mr. Bush snort cocaine.

  23. You will NEVER become president, Ryan. You don't deserve it, either.

  24. plain talk 4 generic fun !July 8, 2015 at 7:39 AM

    Ooooh...what a threat! What are you going to do- have the IT witch cast an official hex on him? You believe in that shit? Witch loathes Obama too & look, he is the most successful of all living presidents. Golden record, STILL in Office.No spell there. If you really believe in witches and spells your either a nut job or sincerely misguided. PS They have the break dance fashion show video with DRP and other unknowns at Benjamin Fox Pavillion- Jenkintown, PA Sept.11, 1983. New Wave haircuts, New Wave & Breaker fashions-and music. You can hear "HIGH NOON" (DISCONET VERSION) by "2 SISTERS" being played. It is on the underground viewing site with the secret code you received. Video not grainy and the sound is fresh ! Hold your horses- there are only 365/366 days in a year. Odds are not a long shot happening on 9/11. Relax. Paul Newman lived in Newtown, CT and made a nice PA German Dutch and Jewish NY salad dip once or twice. Coincidence. Is President Obama a salad star? Is the CIA covering indecent african? Did DRP receive pepsie bottles and cans on all properties on January 9, 2011? That one is a little unusual. But like the american flag ,pepsi symbolizes Obama. Blue for skin color. White for eyes and teeth and red for...that is so America ! Is DRP really a racist or in a cult? S/he works for a private art gallery restoring old treasures. Attention to detail-painsta-great match! Has extensive experience.PR work involved. Refuses to speak-because s/he likes the position and is at peace. Even at peace being an XX-male. Looks like a young caucasian Grace Jones a little too much (weird).. But that's London. London is zaney. Any which way, like most of art, pop culture and fashion -Jenkintown is Jewish! So is Adair ! While Mr. Ed is white bread. He prefers meatloaf wrapped in bacon, garlic mash potaoes with country gravy, buttered green beans, non-alcoholic lemonade or ice tea and homemade raspberry pie with a scoop of all-natural ice cream. No bow ties for Ed. Have a white day (just kidding). So if DRP is a witch at peace, maybe the legalized killers in DC will find the same path. Is The Constitution only paper, Mrs. Clinton-really?

  25. I used to live in Jenkintown. I now live in Arlington. The mood here is not good. I can tell you,having yet another Bush or another Clinton will not be good for the country. I respect their freedom to run, but people are seaching looking or something abit different. They are seen as grabbers. Living off the government like career welfare recipients. No, its not right. Millions of tax-payer dollars spent on security alone. I am not a Republican. I have an open mind. Say what you want about Mr. Trump, but he pays his way for everything-and creates jobs. Yes, Bush and Clinton- you have a "welfare mentality". Pay your own way. You grabbed enough.

  26. They grabbed MILLIONS (Bushes and Clintons). They target the most vulnerable. No wonder the cops are so anxious. They're public servants. People report what they see as being "fishy". They bribe, they murder, they sleep good at night, too. But to catch one of them is absolutely PRICELESS-for a multitude of reasons. Another reason why NSA is so important. It works BOTH ways. You don't have to have a penis, David to be the real king! Ha-ha. I hope your reading this, I really hope you are. D.A.

  27. S/he restores art and ancient books. S/he still has a separatist brain, however. Cannot reason with hess when it comes to separatism.Smart n stupid all at once. Does hess job. As tedious as it is. Its art in itself. uses a microscope for some of it. hey! BTW Mr. Ed (J.) likes ranch dressing on his salad. - Went there!

  28. N.M. this is no April Fool's jokeJuly 8, 2015 at 9:45 AM

    I enjoyed watching the video. Everyone looked like they were from the year 3000. They look more futuristic back then than they do now ! Thank you all for the serial code.

  29. N.M. this is no April Fool's jokeJuly 8, 2015 at 9:48 AM

    No time like the 80's. Wish I were apart of it. Maybe through the ESA/DRPart.

  30. Art preservation? You have to be an artist & a scientist to save the art. Do you know what's entailed?

  31. I'm going to prohibit future posts and archive this. There are many reasons why I feel nervous. But thankful-always...(tramlaw).

  32. Ben is still in shockJuly 8, 2015 at 12:38 PM

    I'm nervous because the President made a colossal mistake- now he's as open as open can be.

  33. You missed one, BenJuly 21, 2015 at 9:57 AM

    Senator McCain-six people were targeted in your state by the deviant-do something! January 8, 2011-the deviant targeted 6 Americans. All of them Arizona citizens. All of them American on American soil. Obama engaged in unlawful, unnatural, abnormal & deviant sex-and was caught. Impeach the deviant. A man's dick does not belong in a man's ass-you end up with gaping hole syndrome, asshole-Obama.Homosexual marriage does not strengthen marriage. Quite the opposite. Mr. Trump has rattled The Establishment. The Bush New World Order is here to stay. Trump would be an effective leader during these extreme perverse and challenging times. Mr.McCain- your war hero status can only go so far. Your president stalked a deformed mentally case, killed innocent Americans on American soil. President Deviant caused the massive fires in Arizona to silence people. You are the voice of the people-and you said nothing. Your full of shit, McCain. Your more worried about reelection than anything. Your wishy-washy. Grow some balls and get that killer deviant out of office. Stop dragging your feet. Unless you have something to hide?

  34. You missed one, BenJuly 21, 2015 at 10:29 AM

    A dick does not belong in a woman's ass either. A transsexual is a man with an inverted penis. That's all. Actually, an Intersex person is the only "true" sexual minority because they are born both male and female. Homosexuals and transsexuals aren't born that way. That's liberal propaganda. Even when it comes to intersex people, its still a defect. They end up as drunks, druggies, and/or insane. Every medical journal has classified intersex as a birth defect. The truth is ugly. No one wants to hear it. Especially homosexual and killer Mr. Obama. Mr. President Obama murdered those six people in Arizona, Mr. McCain. You cannot undo anything. It was an open execution, The US Constitutuion was breached. A little girl was among the victims and was targeted because of who she was and her birth date. Mr. McCain you have an obligation to pursue Mr. Obama. Mr. Clinton was impeached for lying under oath. They could not get him on all of the other crimes he (and even his wife) committed.

  35. I saw the ESA/DRPart stuff. Its wierd. The bar symbolizes the divider on a cashier's check-out belt, or the confederate flag or an escalator. The gallery was great. Conservative art.

  36. beyond Depends...July 21, 2015 at 10:57 AM

    Mr. Obama, you keep taking pricks up yer ass your gonna end up with a colostomy bag and/or with AIDS

  37. Hate never dies, it just grows and grows and grows..

  38. LIBERTY & FREEDOM FOR BUSH/OBAMA,ETC.July 21, 2015 at 1:10 PM

    Kind of like Bush's negroid nostrils or Obama's anus-grows and grows and grows...let freedom ring for these two great "leaders" ! It certainly did not ring for a little girl waiting to see her role model.

  39. souls of Sandy HookJuly 21, 2015 at 1:15 PM

    ...or us...

  40. Back to your desks now.