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President Obama

So, this is what happy feels like. For the past eight years, I have walked around, hunched over, struggling under the burden of a constant low-grade depression. I finally don't feel like an outsider in my own country anymore. This is amazing.

Waiting Until Tomorrow

I haven't posted much lately. To be honest, I've been too nervous. I'm optimistic but not over-confident.

To keep myself occupied, I've been amusing myself by casting the nominees and their running mates as various characters.

For example, "Lost" castaways: 
  • Sarah Palin would clearly be Kate -- the pretty, kinda shallow and annoying girl with the shady past that is always on the verge of catching up with her.
  • John McCain would be John Locke, who else? -- the true believer who sees himself as a hero but who has slipped over the edge into egomaniacal craziness
  • Joe Biden would be Hurley -- the sweet, basically smart, good-hearted regular guy who sometimes lets his mouth get away from him
  • Barack Obama would be Jack -- even though I prefer Sawyer and Sayid, I have to see Obama as the principled leader with a painful family history who always puts the interests of others first
What about Shakespearean characters?
  • I originally thought Palin was Lady Macbeth (and if McCain -- by some evil scheming -- takes the White House, I still think he shouldn't eat ANYTHING Palin gives him), but now I see her more as Bottom from A Midsummer Night's Dream. She's trying to memorize her lines and impress everyone with her acumen, but, ultimately, she's an ass.
  • McCain is Lear, the sad old leader wandering directionless on the moors (or in the swing states).
  • Biden is Falstaff, no commentary required.
  • Obama is Henry V, criticized for his youth and inexperience and wild past, underestimated by everyone until he kicked the shit out of the French army (or the Clinton machine).
I could do this all night, but you get the idea, and it got me though the day.

I have to ask, what were the Palin staffers thinking to let those two Canadian radio goons talk to her? Is it really that easy to talk to Sarah Palin? If I had the slightest desire to do so, could I call up the Palin people, tell them I'm Margaret Thatcher with some advice to offer, and set up a convo?

And why on earth did Dick Cheney leave his underground fortress of evil to endorse McCain two days before the election? You know the McCain people had to be pissed. I think it was the Bush administration's "fuck you" to the McCain campaign for alternately pretending they don't exist and then talking about what a shitty job they've done.

I think it's very sad that Obama's grandmother passed away on the eve of the election. I wish she could have been in full possession of all her faculties to see (please, please, please, fingers crossed) her grandson win tomorrow.

And I wish someone would knock the shit out of the GOP assholes who are running the last-minute fear-a-thon concerning Jeremiah Wright. If I see that commercial one more fucking time...

Okay, I am going to end this rambling, ridiculous entry and go back to obsessively reading HuffingtonPost and The Daily Kos. And maybe casting the candidates as "Veronica Mars" or "Buffy" characters.

Why Obama Is Ahead


I usually tend to come down on the side of cynicism, but goddamn, I'm tired of feeling hopeless and ashamed of my own country. And I am guardedly optimistic that many other people feel the same way.

This Site is FUN.

Check out the Palin-as-Prez site.  It's the best chuckle I've had in several days.

Does Powell's Endorsement Matter?

Colin Powell's long anticipated endorsement of Barack Obama on "Meet the Press" this morning certainly lived up to and perhaps surpassed the expectations of the most hopeful Obama supporter.

Powell not only lavished praise on Obama as a "transformational figure," he effectively eviscerated McCain on his response to the financial crisis, his pick of Sarah Palin as veep, his reprehensible campaign, and his part in creating an ever-narrowing GOP. It was a critique rendered all the more powerful by Powell's calm, reasoned, even delivery.

So, the question remains, how much does it matter?

I lost a significant portion of respect for Powell when he didn't level more stringent criticism at the Bush administration for its precipitate rush to war, even after Powell had (somewhat belatedly, I thought) disassociated himself from the administration.

However, Powell still carries great weight with many voters. Media deference to Powell, along with anecdotal evidence from my own family and community, suggests he has transcended race in a way no other black leader has ever managed to do in this country: he has achieved the status of a respected American elder statesman, not a black elder statesman. Maybe it's his military experience. Maybe it's the staggering breadth of his experience both militarily and politically. Maybe it's his obvious intelligence combined with quiet, dignified strength.

Powell inspires confidence. That is, of course, why he was so utterly convincing in what had to be one of the most dreadful lowpoints of his career, delivering the U.S.'s "evidence" of Iraq's WMDs to the U.N. The Bush administration misled Powell and used him to mislead the American public, while also blithely and foolishly ignoring all of Powell's caveats. Did Bush and his inner circle ever once really listen to anything Powell said?

Powell was a hollow, ineffectual figurehead as Secretary of State, and for someone of Powell's immense qualifications and experience, someone used to being listened to and having his orders followed, that had to sting. Did Powell seize back just a bit of what was stolen from him by Bush and company with his slamming of the current Republican candidate? Maybe.

Will it actually affect the outcome of the election? I don't know. It will certainly dominate the news cycle for a few days. In today's coverage, every Republican strategist I've heard interviewed (and I've heard at least six), sounds ever more hopeless and robotic in their insistence that William Ayers's incredibly tenuous connection to Obama really does reveal something sinister in the character of the Democratic nominee, who, by the way, is a socialist, if you haven't heard.

And despite McCain's strained smile as he states that Powell's endorsement of Obama was expected, Powell's defection from the GOP has to be demoralizing. And, as far as I am concerned, the more demoralized McCain is, the better.

Michele Bachmann Channeling McCarthy


Okay, I've known for a long time that Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann is batshit, fucking crazy, but crazy in a manner I've come to expect from certain members of congress. If the vacant, unblinking, maniacal stare didn't tip you off, pretty much every time she opens her mouth, it's to blather on about intelligent design or the gays or pussies who want America to lose the Iraq war. Pretty typically wing-nutty, right? I mean, the senators from my state are Tom Coburn, who wants to execute abortion doctors, and Jim Inhofe, who doesn't believe in global warming. People who live in glass nuthouses shouldn't throw stones.

But at approximately 6:30 in the above video, Bachmann, spurred on by her terror of an impending Obama administration takes wing-nuttery to a shiver-inducing new level (because, and I don't know if you've heard about this, but apparently, Barack Hussein Obama is some sort of radical Arab Muslim elitist liberal who takes coffee with terrorists. One would have thought the media would have looked into this.) Bachmann, talking to an uncharacteristically near-speechless Chris Matthews, calls for the media to begin an investigation into which "liberal, leftist" members of Congress are "anti-American."

Yeah. I am usually leery of people who invoke the specter of McCarthyism, but this crazy bitch is calling for a witchhunt of oh-my-god-I-have-to-testify-before-HUAC-and-where-is-Arthur-Miller-to-write-a-play-about-this proportions. Who knows, maybe she'll get Sarah Palin's friend Rev. Muthee to spearhead the project. He's totally got the witchhunt credentials. Just ask that poor woman he terrorized into fleeing her Kenyan village.

It's not that I think any rational person will take her call seriously.

It's that I think the lunatics might take her her call seriously.

We already have Sarah Palin fomenting the freakiest, fringiest, angriest factions of the Rethuglican base, smiling when members of her audience call for Obama's death. Maybe it really was her idea instead of the speechwriter's to quote the racist Westbrook Pegler in her RNC speech. Pegler, of course, is infamous for hoping of Robert Kennedy that "some white patriot of the Southern tier will spatter his spoonful of brains in public premises before the snow flies."

We, as sane members of the America citizenry, have the responsibility to hold political figures accountable when they come perilously close to inciting violence against their opponent. We also have the responsibility to protest loudly when political figures spit on the Bill of Rights on national television. Okay, maybe "national" is a bit strong. Imean, it was just MSNBC. But still...

What is the most effective way to hold politicians accountable? Make them unemployed politicians. I've been sending most of my donations to Barack and company, sadly reasoning that Andrew Rice's spirited but doomed bid for Inhofe's senate seat is a waste of funds better used elsewhere. But I think I can scrape together a few bucks to send to Bachmann's opponent Elwyn Tinklenberg. Yes, I know, it's very sad. But he can't help it if he sounds like a J.R.R. Tolkien character. Send him some money.


So, one of my friends from school had two abandoned kittens she was bottle-feeding. She wanted to keep them, but her puppies weren't meshing well with the new members of the household. My mom had to put her 19-year-old cat down last year, and she has been thinking about getting another cat or cats. I took her the kittens yesterday.  They are named Suzie and Tommy (my mom was raised in the '50s), and we played and played. They are beautiful and perfect.  There is nothing in the world more adorable than kittens (human babies included, IMHO).

When I came back to my house, I looked at my cats Sam (11 years) and Dennis (7 years) and asked (unfairly), "Why aren't you kittens?" Dennis looked apologetic and vaguely confused -- his typical expression. Sam's scornfully curled lip and half-closed eyes suggested this response: "Why don't you go clean up where I shit on the carpet? You know I don't like it when you go places."

Then he hefted his substantial girth off the floor and waddled off to check if I had put any more of his prescription weight reduction food in his bowl.

One is my friends is convinced Sam is a Republican. Fat cat. Get it? Get it?


No One Knew It Better Than Obama

So, who didn't see this coming?

As frothing-at-the-mouth disgusting as the McCain/Palin attacks have been in recent days, no honest observer of this campaign can have been surprised at their viciousness, least of all their main target. Check out Obama's prescience in the video link above.

I just keep reminding myself that the McCain/Palin tactics (remember when McCain, ironically, chided Obama over his misunderstanding of tactic versus strategy?) indicate fear and desperation. They are campaigning from a nearly indefensible position of weakness, and they know it.  They are appealing more and more to the lunatic fringe of the Republican base, and this is not a year, unlike other recent election cycles, where a strong base showing is enough to put the candidate over the top.

I keep reminding myself of these facts. Then I go and make another donation to Obama.

Donate here.
TIME writer Nathan Thornburgh gets to the substance of Palin's ineptitude in "What the Troopergate Report Really Says."