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Woman or black? Definitely not McCain Woman or black? Definitely not McCain
by Thanos Kalamidas
2008-02-07 10:07:25
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So it is Thursday, Super Tuesday is behind us and John McCain feels comfortable and victorious, Barack Obama won in most States but Hillary Clinton got most delegates and the candidates’ circus has already moved to the next states of Louisiana, Nebraska and Washington. All the news agencies all around the world are watching, reporting, analyzing and from the smallest village in South Africa to the cities of Germany everybody has an opinion, idea or favourite.

I suppose this is the reality for being a superpower. The funny thing about it is that for years now when any of the American administrations dared to express an opinion about any country’s government or politics whole nations took the streets complaining for their involvement in domestic issues. But as I said before, this is part of the reward of being a superpower!

But again, how many things have changed for all of us during Clinton’s administration when the US started rising as the world's only superpower and how much more have things changed in George W. Bush’s time? Mr. Obama, in a speech a few days ago, said something I really liked, “When America sneezes, the black people catch a cold!” What I can add to that is when America sneezes, black people catch a cold and the rest of us get pneumonia; how else can you explain that when Americans don’t pay their house mortgage the price of bread and milk in my neighbourhood rises?

But let’s come back to the candidates. Barack Obama, a star is born; I’ve been watching him for the last five years mainly because a friend of mine from Chicago told me that he is the future president of the USA. And I’ve been watching him all this time mainly through magazines and the internet – well I don’t live in Illinois. He's a very energetic and clever - perhaps brilliant - young man that knows how to play the media, he's charismatic and natural just like John F. Kennedy and the man loves the camera; he is photogenic as a Hollywood star.

A few days ago he said another thing I really liked, “This election is not about race or gender, this election is about the future!” Man, I was waiting for so long for somebody to say that. We are in the beginning of the 21st century, we shouldn’t talk about race and gender any more, we did theoretically and we fought for both - we had a world war about it and the case is solved. We are all one and equal, and if there are some who cannot understand it they are relics and fossils, and our democracies know how to isolate them. The future, the change, that’s what we need to work for. We have people dying, the earth is dying and we can do something all together! I liked the message.

However, remember this is always my opinion, the years I’ve been watching Barack Obama I found out that he is a master in slogans but when it came the time to take action he was …neutral! Environmental issues in Congress, education issues in Illinois, health laws he was neutral! He had a vote in theory but when it came the time to vote he postponed the decision and felt comfortable voting nothing! Yes, he was against the invasion of Iraq but he started talking about it only when other voices and a lot of Europeans started opposing George W. Bush’s decision. I have the feeling that he gambled and he won but can you gamble the future of the globe? As I said before, whatever happens in the US has an immediate effect on the entire world. Yes it is a challenge to have for the first time a black president, it will be a blessing, but then do you invest the future in race, then why not in gender?

Coming to gender, Hillary Clinton, the former first lady of America, sees the American presidency as the family business - a Clinton after every Bush; does that mean that Bush’s brother or son will be next? In the early-eighties in the UK a woman was candidate for the Prime Minister’s seat and despite the fact that she was Conservative everybody hoped that she would bring a new air in European politics. They hoped she would protect the family, she would improve work conditions and she would make the perfect welfare state because she was a woman and she knew the other side of the hill. The Lady was a bitch!

Unemployment was sky high, the streets of London full of homeless, Yorkshire and Scotland dying, welfare state only if you had money! Her dream was to rule like her idol Pinochet but thank god the parliament prevails! The truth is that she never promised anything different to what she did but she was a woman and everybody was expecting the difference. So is being a woman or black enough reason to become the President of the United States?

Hillary Clinton is a hard bitch and she proved that while she was the first lady but I suppose even this bitch will be better than a dangerous idiot who endangers the future of all of us everyday. At least she has a plan and she has said out loud that she wants a world health system; she realizes that the office of the President of the United States has greater responsibilities than 50 American states. She sees the big picture and I have to admit that she’s right when she says that she has the experience, she learnt through the mistakes and she had the chance to see it unveiled before her eyes.

What a great combination it would be to have a woman and a black as president and vice-president. None of them would be decorative in the role of the vice-president and their united energy, strength and ideas would profit not only California, Virginia and Oklahoma but the whole world. With this combination it will be like shopping in the supermarket, three items for the price of one, Clinton, Obama and Clinton! How different they will be to any George W. Bush and Dick!

And since we are talking about dick here is John McCain. The alternative George W. Bush in place of George W. Bush! The man gives a meaning to the word 'conservative', a General Custer in the 21st century; a good enemy is a dead enemy and if you don’t agree with me you are the enemy! Have you seen the film Escape From L.A. where they imprison anybody who doesn’t agree with the state, has AIDS, smokes or doesn’t pray twice a day? Well with McCain this is where science fiction meets reality.

However, he is still a strong opponent for the Democrats not because he is any good but just because the other side is so controversial that he will manage to unite the Republicans. This is exactly what makes me believe that this election will be again very close. The candidacy of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton has managed something very unique: it has split the Democratic Party in two that often shoot at each other in worse ways than their real opponent, while simultaneously uniting every Republican and conservative in the States.

Conservative… I must remember the other conservative candidate, Mitt Romney! When the rally started I wrote an article about the different candidates and when it came to Mitt Romney I wrote 'too good to be true', yet after Super Tuesday I must add one more thing. Americans, whether they like it or not, are a nation of immigrants from different countries, nations and religions; they like their president to have a family and be a good family person, they like their president to have faith but they are not keen on a religious president and this is where it stops with Mitt.

My disappointment was Rudy Giuliani, not much different in the ideas from McCain and Romney, but at least he has style and he would have been a fun challenger to Obama or Clinton, yet now I get to think that he did it on purpose - he didn’t want to give a lost fight and he knew that his chance would come on better days… this is the time for the Democrats!

    
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Akli Hadid2008-02-07 10:22:34
Nice article Thanos. It's Mitt RoMNey though. My personal favorite was Ron Paul. Though he withdrew, he was smart. He favored legalizing Marijuana, and when asked the question "what would you think if your son legally smoked marijuana", he answered: the government is not supposed to tell you what's good for your health, otherwise it would force many people to go on a diet. But the US is not ready for that.


Emanuel Paparella2008-02-07 16:46:47
Indeed Thanos, you are quite right, gender or race by itself should not be the reason for choosing a suitable president. I for one am all for women and feminists who propose an alternative vision to the one proposed by male Machiavellian politicians who control the levers of power, but am not for those feminists who, to use your own expression, have become bitches in the process of competing and imitating those same manipulative male politicians and in the final analysis have no alternative to Machiavellian political tactics. The operative word here is “vision.” I suspect that the reason why Obama is running so competitively is that most people, even when they are knowledgeable of the issues, sense that he would provide a vision for which the people long. People need vision as much if not more than mere bread and cynical circuses. They are starving for it. JFK too was considered too young and without the political experience of a Richard Nixon, but he had a vision and it was not fake, and that is at least as important as thirty five years of experience in becoming a run of the mill politician.


Thanos2008-02-07 19:37:46
Thanks Akli, you made me laugh with my …Rooney mistake!!!

Regarding the Republican candidates I have a strong feeling that they are sure the democrats are winning and that’s why they don’t give their best. You are right Ron Paul was exceptional but I think George W. Bush and the Hillary Barack twin have put the standards for this election and there was no room for him.

Vision is truly a magic word Emanuel and I’m really sorry to see that politicians all around the word are missing vision but then again everyday problems – unemployment, health care, pensions education - have become so tense that leaves them not much space for visions, but as you mentioned people are thriving for hope and vision.


Thanos2008-02-07 19:41:00
And it is just on the news that: GOP sources: Romney to suspend campaign, http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/02/07/romney.campaign/index.html
So McCain is alone!


Lisa2008-02-08 00:45:08
Get this straight Ron Paul is still running. The media lies.
The only candidate who wants to end the war is Ron Paul. I wonder why he get no coverage? I guess the power that controls our news thinks Americans are stupid. I hope Americans do not prove the media right. Go Dr. No!!


Connor2008-02-08 05:14:53
So...has it maybe occurred to you that voting based on race or gender would harm either cause? You don't heal a wound by picking at it. Anyway, Obama might have a chance, but the thought of Bush and/or Clinton dynasties sends shivers up my spine.

Oh, and for the record, Hillary as less experience in office than any other candidate in the field. By years.


ProbeAlpha2008-02-08 05:23:02
Hi PA here,
Guess you have not heard, Ron Paul is still in the running, He may not win, but could be kingmaker.
yours
PA


Jack2008-02-08 21:01:35
It seems that rather than voting for them because they are African-American or a woman, public sentiment pursades them to even vote for a Jimmy Stewart in as "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington". Not only a fresh face,but fresh ideas. No baggage from political cronies, in fact "Change just for change's sake". And perhaps having little or no experience with the Washington political parties may be a good thing.


Sand2008-02-09 06:35:41
I find it very disturbing that all of the candidates, Republican and Democrat, are riding to the election on their personalities rather than the issues which are pushing basic survival of life on the planet very rapidly toward a frightful conclusion. They are like passengers on an elevator with a snapped cable that is falling and they are fighting for positions near the door. In a few decades there will be horrible conflicts over land, water, disease, and perhaps even breathable air and nobody is even mentioning the problems. No matter who wins the world is in terrible trouble and whoever is the handsomest or more ideal will be of no value whatsoever as the problems require fundamental changes in human activity and there seems to be no prospects of the changes being even proposed, much more, to be put into action.


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