I’ll be off to bed soon, but of the many things that I’ve pondered the past couple of days, it’s a minor one that’s bringing me to write.
I find that Obama intrigues me. and probably more significantly, I don’t think most people know who he is.
See, I keep running into these people – left and right – who keep saying he’s this or that, and then when he comes out on a position they scream of reversal or betrayal. And then they turn around and discuss his short list of candidates – heck, even I’ve done that last, a bit.
Ladies and Gentlemen, especially all of you who say you want a candidate who thinks in terms larger than soundbites, I present to you Obama. Really, you will do well to actually read and listen to the WHOLE SPEECH. All of them, actually. Because the thing is, there are very, very few things where he’s not nuanced. Where he isn’t saying, “while my basic position is thus, I’m willing to negotiate the details and fringes.” Or, “While I have an opinion, I want to hear others, and their justifications, before I act.”
He thinks. He listens. And then he says what he’s going to do.
Do I like everything he’s chosen to do? No. I think he should stand a bit stronger on the current FISA deal, as one example. But… he thinks. He weighs the whole.
The other thing of note is that he’s not following the “same old path”. Oh, it’s mostly the same as most other presidents and candidates, and that’s because it’s still the same nation. But, well, to give an example, I do not think anyone has really thought about his candidate for VP correctly. I’m probably a bit close in CLOSING windows rather than emphasizing paths, but I”m sure I’m off as well.
By the numbers, a VP candidate does not win a state unless it’s close already. The candidate rarely provides the weight in an area lacked elsewhere, not really – though it may appear so (Johnson and Cheney as examples). Really, what the VP does is add a voice. And in that regard Obama has a decision and will follow the norm – because there are two historical patterns. The second voice can be the bad cop to the candidate’s good cop. Or, it can be a harmonious echo of the candidate.
I find I’ve no clue as to which Obama will choose. But I’m beginning to have this suspicion – just a niggle, mind you – that the actual short list isn’t the one all the pundits and such are considering. I just get this impression the first reaction to the announcement will be, “Who?” Followed, depending on speaker, by either, “What a mistake, now McCain’s going to win for sure,” or “Wow, that actually works.” Of course that’s what we’d here even if it were, “Of course he picked him/her.” But…
That’s my prediction of the reaction to the person chosen to run with Obama. It’ll be interesting.