Tuesday, February 26, 2008

An American Icon

The newest addition to American Pop Culture just may be our next President. A lot has been said about Obama's lack of experience and lack of any campaign platform. In fact the best line I heard this past week was John McCain's, where he called Barack Obama's campaign, "an eloquent but empty call for change". We here at the Blogway Boys are not going to just jump on the bandwagon and pile onto Sen Obama ... we are going to do our research.

So where do I go to find out the Senator's positions? The obvious place is his website, after all if I wanted people to know where I stood ... I would definitely put all my positions on my website. Sure enough, on his very slick web page (one that I am actually jealous of, since mine looks like do-do compared to it), once you get past all the attention grabbing calls for "Change", there is an issues drop-down menu with 20 issues plus a category entitled additional issues with 6 more. I was delighted ... this would be the easiest research I had ever done.

So with great anticipation, I opened the first one entitled, "Fiscal" and downloaded the 3-page PDF file. Wow, I thought, this guy is good ... he can solve the nations' fiscal crises in 3 pages. Well actually 2 pages, since the first one was a cover sheet ... Well one page, the second one was merely a quote from one of his speeches (triple-spaced and taking up half the page, with the remainder of the page giving a summary and an explanation of the problem). Well actually not quite a page since the last fifth of the final page gave a synopsis of his voting record. Now the meat of the rest of the issue page was that we need to cut pork-barrel spending, reverse the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy (though he didn't define wealthy), reinstate pay as you go rules in Congress, make government spending more accountable and efficient, end wasteful government spending, end tax haven abuse, and close special interest corporate loopholes.

I looked at this in shock, o-kay, I could get behind some of the policies ... but nowhere did he say how he would do them. Is he under the assumption that when he becomes POTUS that he can fix all of these things by official fiat? My mind immediately wandered to Sen Clinton's speech where she spoke about the heavens opening up and the celestial choir starting.

Every one of the positions on his website were full of beautiful ideas and ideals ... but not much in the way of how he was going to accomplish them, much less how he was going to pay for it. He also says that he is going to cut taxes on the poor, middle class and elderly. Everything will be perfect in "Obama-Land".

Looking through his voting record, he does seem to practice what he preaches, he voted against giving telecommunications companies immunity for co-operating with the federal government, he voted for pay as you go amendments and against the war in Iraq. He voted against funding the war and he voted for time-tables for troop withdrawals. Now I disagree with all of these votes ... but have to give the man credit for his consistency. The problem I have is he has missed a lot of votes (he has actually missed more than he has cast). I don't know if this is because he had no opinion on them, or if it was because he thought that by voting his conscience that it would hurt him politically ... or if he was just too busy running for President.

Anyway that you look at it, Obama doesn't have a plan ... just empty rhetoric. If he was competing on Dancing With The Stars, he would get my vote ... but for President, I would prefer Hillary (I can't believe I just said that).

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Tuesday, February 12, 2008


All of a sudden I am hearing about the role of the "Super Delegates" in the Democratic Nominating Convention. Are these delegates faster than a speeding bullet? Can they bend steel in their bare hands? Do they have mental powers beyond our feeble brains? What makes them so super?
Well folks, they are super because they can vote for any candidate that they want. They are the wild-card in this whole process. Your State can vote 90% for Obama, and your "super" delegate can vote for Clinton. Yes, they can be a powerful force at the convention, disregarding the will of the American people and voting for anyone they want. But who are these powerful individuals ... what are their secret identities?
This army or "Super" delegates (numbering about 842) is comprised of 450 elected members of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Democratic Governors, Democratic Senators and House members, distinguished party leaders like current and former Presidents, Vice-Presidents, and former leaders of the House and Senate), and those chosen by the DNC to get the number up to 842. With the exception of Super Bill Clinton, these delegates are un-pledged and free to vote for whomever they wish. With 2052 delegates needed to win the nomination, these Supermen (and women) represent over 41% of the delegates needed to ensure victory.
You may be saying to yourselves, "This doesn't seem too democratic", and you would be right. But, the party of change has a very good reason for this ... usurping of the democratic rights of their voters. They believe that the voters are stupid and that the political hacks of the DNC know what is best for the voters. After the 1972 primary put George McGovern at the top of the Democratic ticket, the party decided to institute "super delegates" to prevent it from every happening again. Those of you who are too young to remember, McGovern lost to Richard Nixon 520 - 17 in the biggest electoral college landslide till that time. These "super-delegates" were set up as a safety-valve in case the voters ever tried to elect another candidate that was undesireable to the Democratic Party!
I don't know about you, but I would be a little pissed off if a candidate were to be annointed the nominee by these "Super" people, because they felt I was too dumb to make the correct choice. This party of "change" ... needs to change their process.

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