Friday, March 21, 2008

I'm not alone

Apparently, Glenn Greenwald was also a little freaked out by Obama's speech for exactly the same reasons.


gregvw said...

To a certain extent, my interest in the US election is well conveyed by this picture, however, I did read the pastor's comments on America from which Obama distanced himself during his speech. I can't say I actually disagreed with any of it. Maybe my brain is overly contaminated with revisionist historian diatribes, but to my taste, the revisionist view on history seems to jive better with Occam's razor that the twaddle that you get from mainstream texts and media.

Rufus said...

I disagreed with a bit of it, but I definitely think this "outrage" falls under the typical election year trick of taking some minor gaffe and pretending it's just unimaginably terrible. As refreshing as it is to see Rush Limbaugh taking up the cause of political correctness, I think it's just a lot of horseshit about nothing.

Holly said...

At some point I lost interest in people's reactions to this latest drama, because while the speech was good, and the points made in it were significant and worthy.... when you (uh, we, that is, Americans) are in a situation where being addressed as adults with critical thinking faculties and individual ownership of our own thought processes is ground-breaking, shocking, daring, brave, and a risky approach, then we are fucked. Seriously.

Fucked, because it's easier to apprehend things like a mis-labeled photograph of a younger Barack Obama posing with family members, where the men are tagged as dead or in jail, and the women have stupid names, like 'Washeteria'... and the photo is circulated with comments like "wait until this bunch starts running around the white house".

Fucked, because sensationalist, yellow, mis-leading, straight-up wrong "journalism" is in extreme demand. It's not like that because the news media is pulling the wool over our eyes. It's like that because that's what Americans are willing to watch, listen to, pay for, discuss at the water cooler.

Fucked, because the people who are capable of listening to a speech that has a duration about 9 times longer than the length of TV show between commercial breaks... are frightened. Daring not to hope, exactly. Wanting the best, expecting much, much worse. And, frankly, feeling outnumbered and overpowered.

I'd love to believe that many, many staunch supporters of other candidates will have that crisis of faith and conscience that leads to a surprise, last minute, change of vote. But what would actually be needed is for all those people to suddenly, and more or less immediately, become very vocal about their change of mind/heart, and tell everyone they know what they're doing, and why.

Rufus said...

Yeah, it's tough because I don't really think he'll win. For me, scanning blogs is usually a good reminder that it's not just a media assumption that people care more about stupid shit than they do about substance.

About 70 percent of French people, when polled, said they would vote for Obama, so it's a bit skewed here too, but there was a journal that made the point that the "Obama Revolution" has already happened, whether or not he wins. I'd like to believe that, but alas I'm sure I'll get that image emailed to me by a relative.

For me, an eye-opening moment was talking about the last election with a relatively-intelligent, middle-aged relative of mine. She said that she didn't want to vote for Bush, but she could never vote for Kerry. I asked her why not and her response was, "Well, I hear that his wife is a bitch." I think, probably something like "we are fucked" went through my head.

Holly said...

I asked her why not and her response was, "Well, I hear that his wife is a bitch."

So... was there any conversation around that whole mixing up Entertainment Weekly and the Constitution of the United States? Or did you let that go? (How to address a thing like that? Where would you even begin??)