5 Cool Things About the 2008 Presidential Campaign

Clay Whipkey 5CT, feminism, history, news, politics, race, women 35 Comments

This post is another installment in my “5 Cool Things” series.  Today I’m giving a list, again in no particular order, of some things that are cool about the 2008 race for President of the United States.  I have tried to make the list from the angle of not knowing or anticipating which candidate will win.

  1. We will either have a black man, or a woman, in the White House.
  2. Conservative Christians and Mormons will now have a precedent set for supporting a woman with a young family as being more appropriate for a very high-ranking, important, and demanding job than a man.
  3. The dynamic personalities of Obama and Palin will attract a lot of otherwise uninterested folks who will then get some exposure to the important issues facing our country.
  4. Regardless of which candidate wins, and as long as they are telling the truth, most of us will see tax savings, less dependence on foreign oil, and some assistance towards making health care more affordable.
  5. All of the candidates for the office of President can pronounce the word “nuclear”. (Let’s hope for whole tickets possessing this remarkable ability in 2012!)

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Comments 35

  1. Very good!

    Although, I have to say that while Bush’s rather colloquial pronunciation of certain words (nuclear being one of many) is annoying to many, I’ve always considered to be a sign of his attachment to a certain background, and been rather neutral on whether or not this is good/bad.

  2. We will either have a black man, or a woman, in the White House.

    Do you have plans for McCain that the Secret Service should know about? 🙂

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    JimD,

    The VP works in the White House, right? I’m just going on assumptions there, though. I figure I don’t need to really understand what the VP actually does until after I am selected as a candidate for it, so I won’t worry about it now. 😉

  4. I just wish there were more than these five things. Any other suggestions, ’cause my brain farts every time I even think of the election.

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    Ray, to be honest I thought of the first 3 items on the list several weeks ago, and I really struggled to push it to 5. I think its probably common in elections for the things that are generally good about the election campaign to be pretty limited. Most of what is going to be “good” about the situation is subjectively different for each person and is tied to hoping that one candidate wins over the other.

    For example, I could have made a much longer list of things I think would be cool about my candidate winning, but then any discussion then center around “my candidate is better than yours” mentality.

  6. Clay and Ray,

    How about this? Record voter registrations of under 30s and African-Americans.

    Oh, and my wife being enthusiastic enough about a candidate to volunteer her time to a campaign and get involved in some local issues to boot. This personal aspect of this election has surprised me to no end. My wife was apolitical for the first 8 years of our marriage, and now we’re talking politics excitedly for the first time together and agreeing most of the time.

  7. Another good thing: There’s a good chance we’ll finally get a straight story about important issues in the economy. It seems like regime changes allow the new person to throw a lot of accumulated skeletons out of the White House closets. Eight years is a long time to collect skeletons (Reagan, Clinton, now Bush II). It seems like this happens after each change.

  8. Love it! #1 and #2 are the ones I have been thinking about for a while. Did you notice how in last night’s debate, no matter what they asked, McCain’s answer was “energy independence”? I was also surprised to discover in the VP debates that all 4 are against SSM. And it sounds as though we’re now getting to where all 4 are willing to drill on US soil and build nuclear plants (or whatever Palin thinks she’s building with her mispronunciation). Maybe the parties will merge, and Obama will drop Biden and take McCain as veep.

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    I was also surprised to discover in the VP debates that all 4 are against SSM.

    Me too, to an extent. But if you pay careful attention what Biden said, he indicates that what he and Obama are in favor of is that government should not be involved in anyone’s marriage. From that I’m taking that they support something more along the lines of how it works in the Netherlands.

    Adult couples go to the government office to commit their relationship in a formal legal manner which extends all necessary rights… i.e. a civil union. That is all the government does at all, that is all it ever acknowledges. From there, the couple can choose to go to their church of choice and have a wedding ceremony if they wish, wherein they would become “married”. But getting married in that scenario would really have no additional legal impact. I’m assuming when Obama/Biden say they don’t support redefining marriage they are leaning towards the government not being involved with the definition of marriage for anyone.

  10. There’s a question:

    Would McCain rather be paired with Obama on a ticket or Romney – if there were no political fall-out to either choice? The liberal, charismatic black man or the opportunistic Mormon?

    I wonder . . .

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    From the transcript, which obviously reads weirder than it was spoken:

    IFILL: Let’s try to avoid nuance, Senator. Do you support gay marriage?

    BIDEN: No. Barack Obama nor I support redefining from a civil side what constitutes marriage. We do not support that. That is basically the decision to be able to be able to be left to faiths and people who practice their faiths the determination what you call it.

    The bottom line though is, and I’m glad to hear the governor, I take her at her word, obviously, that she think there should be no civil rights distinction, none whatsoever, between a committed gay couple and a committed heterosexual couple. If that’s the case, we really don’t have a difference.

  12. The sad thing about #3:

    The dynamic personalities of Obama and Palin will attract a lot of otherwise uninterested folks who will then get some exposure to the important issues facing our country.

    Nobody is really interested in the personalities of either Obama or Palin. This country is programed to be so racist and sexist that the first member of the black race or female sex that have a snowball chance in hell of winning their ticket were snatched up regardless of ideas, experience, or real knowledge of any system, politial or otherwise.

    Our affirmative action candidates break my heart. To demonstrate that I’m neither sexist or racist: I would have gladly voted for a Presidential candidate Rice. I love America and it pains me deeply to see these four clowns as the only viable candidates.

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    Nazenail,

    If you think people aren’t interested in the personalities of Obama and Palin, you aren’t paying attention. You may not find them compelling, but large portions of America certainly do, in one direction or another.

  15. BTW, Palin gets grilled for her pronunciation of “nuclear”, but whenever Obama speaks to a black crowd nobody complains of his pronunciation of “cuntra (country), gowna (going to), maybuh (maybe), dignuta (dignity), or suhddnlah (suddenly).

    Clay, unfortunately I can’t help but pay constant attention. I can’t keep my eyes off this train wreck. Again, people don’t care about their personalities, only the skin color and the reproductive organs. Nobody would know who the heck Obama is if he weren’t black, and Sarah certainly wouldn’t have been selected if McCain didn’t desperately need a gimmick candidate to survive the Democrat’s gimmick candidate.

  16. Nazenail,

    Obama’s pronunciations are affected regionalisms. Palin’s mispronunciation is a “dumbism”. The two are not in the same class. Saying “nucular” is like saying “liberry” instead of library. There are regionalisms and there are “dumbisms”.

  17. I think it’s cool that for the first election in I don’t know how long, neither party has put a Southerner on the ticket (I can do without the drawl). Perhaps that has some bearing on Clay’s #5…

  18. you should all be proud that your country is not prejudiced against linguistically deficient people. Do you know how much chance would such a person get in another country for such a position? NONE! Be gratefull! Sheeeeeeeeeez

    Just in case I am not clear I want to say that I am teasing you.

    Now if you want I will trade you Brigitte Bardot for Sarah Palin anytime. If you don’t know what I am talking about just look their names up on google, but maybe you have heard about it already. If you don’t know yet I hope you’ll get a good laugh at Brigitte Bardot because WE DO in France.

  19. A distinction between “regionalism” and “dumbism?” Hm, that seems like a fairly thin wire to tread.

    But please, please, please, if we are going to make fun of Governor Palin, certainly Joe Biden cannot be let off the hook. Of course, he was top of his class at Syracuse Law … and was there on scholarship. Wasn’t he?

  20. as long as they are telling the truth, most of us will see tax savings, less dependence on foreign oil, and some assistance towards making health care more affordable.

    I wouldn’t say the candidates are deliberately lying on these subjects, they are just in deep denial. Regardless of who wins, you can expect the following: (1) your taxes are more likely to go up than down, (2) we will be nowhere close to energy independence 8 years from now, and (3) the best you can hope for on health care affordability is that it becomes more uniform–costs are still going to go up faster than overall inflation.

  21. (22) John, come on. “Nucular” is a regionalism as well. Idahoans and Westerners all say it. just like “warsh or waeesh” and mixed verb tenses. But I have noticed that regionlisms associate with red states with some people are “dumbisms” but Northeastern, Midwestern, or Californian regionalisms are somehow erudite. JFK’s “idear” sounds just as stupid as “nucular.”

  22. John Nilsson,

    BHO’s pronunciation is not affected by regionalism, but pandering-ism. The man’s never lived in the south! (they sure don’t speak that way in Chicago, Kansas, or LA. Maybe they do in Jakarta =)

    If regionalism is an excuse for mispronunciation then Palin is off the hook. I was raised in the mountain west and was never once corrected for pronouncing nuclear — “nucular”. Most people around me said the word that way. It wasn’t until I moved to the So Cal that somebody was laughing at me for pronouncing the word the same was GWB does. (I’m sure he just learned that was funny from watching Letterman the night before)

    How about those on the east coast that pronounce wash “warsh”, or idea “idear”? Dumbism or regionalism?

  23. Last Lemming – ah, yes, the “it’s not a lie if they believe it” defense. An oldie, but a goodie. That’s the election version of what converts to “plausible deniability” when in office. However, it seems to be a pretty common ailment in Washington. There’s a fine line between optimism and BS.

    Peter & Nazenail – I refuse to accept the explanation that mispronouncing nuclear is somehow acceptable regionally. You would think Utahns could get it right since there’s so much nuclear waste (excuse me, “energy solutions”) in their beloved state. Many Utahns and Idahoans also say “we was.” That doesn’t make it right.

  24. Regarding the “regionalism” v. “dumbism” debate – –

    Jimmy Carter, the “nucular” physicist, pronounced it “nucular.”

  25. the “it’s not a lie if they believe it” defense.

    It wasn’t a defense. Having been in Washington for the better part of 25 years now, I no longer divide political speech into lies and truths–I divide it between the serious and the unserious, and I think I have a pretty good sense of which is which. Most of what these guys say falls into the latter category and I don’t particularly care how that category breaks down between lies and foolishness.

  26. The coolest thing about the campaign is that watching a video of McCain and his mother discuss Romney’s faith led me to web sites that I was unaware of where I found that there are people like me, who don’t believe but still go to church for family and/or social reasons. It also helped me see that I really can’t maintain this stance for much longer and is preparing me to leave the church.

    OK, maybe that’s not what you had in mind, but that’s the first thing I thought of when I saw your title.

    (The other cool thing is that I can say that I’ve met Mitt Romney, but that’s another story.)

  27. “I’m assuming when Obama/Biden say they don’t support redefining marriage they are leaning towards the government not being involved with the definition of marriage for anyone”

    Obamah originally went on record as saying that marriage, as a word, is tied to religion and shouldn’t be changed because of that but that he supported civil unions for SS partners. I heard him say this, but I don’t have the exact quote.

    He has acted in direct opposition of this view, though, at times. So it is not clear what he means or even if he really believes it vs is just saying it to avoid losing votes. (Note: I’m not accusing Obama of anything there that every politician I know of is equally gulity of, btw.)

  28. “Regardless of which candidate wins, and as long as they are telling the truth,”
    It looks like the mud slinging is well under way , here is Obama’s latest add.

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