Lens Travels - Living our Dreams! travel blog

As an admitted political junkie I have been watching with high interest the unfolding political campaigns of both the Republican and the Democratic parties, but in particular the battle between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

The bare knuckles fight between Hillary, Bill and Barack culminating in last nights huge victory by Barack Obama in South Carolina has caused me to revisit and rethink how I feel about both of these candidates, and also the way that we have been doing political business in this country for some time now.

I personally have been horrified, disgusted and angered by the divisive Karl Rove politics of personal destruction and polarization that we have witnessed for the past 7 years under the current administration, that has so divided this great country that we live in and love. It doesn't have to be that way, and if we are to solve the many urgent problems facing this country today we are going to have to find a way to move away from this extreme polarization and return to a more moderate, less partisan way of doing political business in this country. In football terms we need to find a way to govern between the 35 yard lines, not from each end zone. We have to do this or we will very soon be in very big trouble in this country, in my opinion.

I have been very careful to avoid inserting my personal viewpoints on politics into my postings when I have talked about politics, but I'm about to break that rule and step into it a little bit here. It is not my intent to offend anyone who reads this that may not agree with me, and I'm open to any of your thoughts and opinions that may differ from mine. Who knows, maybe we can get a good conversation going here. I love this country, and the more of it I see the more I love it, not to mention the people that I'm meeting all along the way in my travels.

All of which brings me back to Hillary and Barack. I have been of the belief until recently that Hillary was by far the most prepared person to take over the presidency in January 2009 and to begin immediately working on repairing the damage done during the past seven years, then to begin solving our health insurance, social security and medicare problems, and to find an honorable way out of the Iraq War mess. I still believe that Hillary is extremely intelligent and well prepared on all of these issues and many others. She's spent a lifetime thinking about and studying these problems and comes to the table with well thought out and detailed plans to go about moving forward toward solutions. She has moved much more to the center politically, which is where I am, and I suspect that most of the country are as well. The down side of Hillary is that she brings a lot of negative baggage to the table as well as the good things.

I have come to the conclusion that her negatives outweigh her positives especially in the current political environment. All of that was confirmed and added to by the way that both Hillary and Bill went about campaigning in South Carolina. It reminded me of the Karl Rove politics of polarazation and personal destruction that I have so come to despise during the past 7 years. Say and do whatever it takes to win even if it involves distortion of facts or outright lies. That's the politics of the past, which in fact has worked in the past, but we've got to do better than that in the future if we are to move forward in a positive way in this country.

I am now convinced that Barack Obama is the best hope to move toward a more inclusive, moderate, inspirational politcal model for the future. I cannot remember being as moved by a political speech as I was last evening by his victory speech as well as his other speeches in Iowa and New Hampshire. He is obviously highly intellegent, well educated and has put together a highly effective political campaign to match or better the highly touted Clinton Machine. He opposed the war in Iraq from the beginning, as I did, and he has withstood the withering attacks from the Clinton campaign to come forward with a spectacular win in South Carolina last evening. It's going to be a long road to the nomination, but I believe that he is on to something big and has managed to tap into the anger and unhappiness that is everywhere evident in this country toward the way this country has been managed during the past 7 years. He has my full support and hopefully I can find a way to help in some way to this end.

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