President Obama

Listening to all these candidates for the two years that seemed like forever wasn’t really a matter of listening to their promises. Those are, by definition, empty in my mind. They sound wonderful or frightening but they mean nothing because they are uttered in a vacuum. The candidate has no power, and if they assume power still will not have the power to simply implement the promised policy.

When i’m not forced to vote against G.W. Bush, i vote for a person rather than policy promises. A person can be broken, but not so easily as a promise.

I expect great disappointment with Obama’s policy, and that disappointment will be correlated to how far left the person being disappointed stands. It’s easy to forget, but the neo-con faction was sorely disappointed with Reagan. The extremes are always disappointed and angry.

I voted for a man who is obviously intelligent and able to explain himself and his thoughts clearly without dumbing it down to the lowest common denominator. I voted for a man who – by all accounts – is a pragmatist. I take “pragmatist” in the context of politics to mean: basing action on facts rather than ideology. I voted for a man who is capable of seeing more than one side of an argument. And i voted for man who seems utterly unflappable.

I expect to disagree with some of his decisions, but i also expect that i will also be able to fathom the reasons for those decisions. In fact, it has already happened in his choice for Chief of Staff.
I know that i have no avenue for expressing my opinion directly to him, but it is enough for me to know that if i had such an opportunity that he would hear me out. And that if my argument was good enough, it would be capable of persuading him.

I suffer from no illusions in this. The Presidency is a dirty job that grinds even the greatest of men down. I am comforted by the fact that i voted for a man who has the tools of greatness, so i may hope that he is a match for the job he has taken.

And i know well enough that i am as responsible for the direction and future of this nation as him. We all have our work cut out for us. My greatest fear is that many of my compatriots will assume that their duties have been filled by the act of touching a screen, pulling a lever, or filling in an oval. There is no hope for a great presidency without a great nation behind it.

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~ by Lex on November 8, 2008.

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