Well, I see Obama has been elected President of the United States of America.

And so I join the throng of bloggers across the globe who in the last couple of hours have at least typed the word Barack and/or Obama at least once.

I admit I haven’t followed the U.S. election campaign very closely, and so the Obamic* appeal for me is based purely on his apparent ability to inspire hope in people—hope for possibility and change.

Will things change?  Some people seem to be giving Barack a messianic air.  I, on the other hand, tend to be quite pessimistic about politics.  In Canada, at any rate, it seems that as sincere as a candidate’s campaign promises may be, his or her hands will be fairly tied once in office.  Maybe it’s different in the U.S.  And maybe Obama is a president-elect unlike any other in recent history.

But right now any promises he has made are still promises.

Having said that, and with my almost complete ignorance of the candidates’ respective policies (which makes the following statement fairly vacuous) in mind*, I’m pretty excited that Barack Obama was elected. For some reason he inspires hope in me, too, and I’m not an American.

Clever campaigning? Or sincerity? Once again, we shall see.
*Keep you eyes open: I’m counting on “Obamic” and maybe even “Obamic appeal” to become a pundit mainstay in the relatively near future. And, as far as I know, I just coined it!
**Please don’t bring up the abortion issue now. I’ve been thinking about it again and may post my thoughts soon, so maybe save your comments until then. Also, there are probably elements of both candidates’ policies with which I take issue. Which candidate has more offensive material? Or, which candidate’s offensive material overpowers whose? That’s not for this post (or for me, in my ignorance, to even ponder at this point).

5 thoughts on “Obama

  1. Jay

    The messianic air he is given by some is just too much. I agree he inspires many, communucates well, but he is one man. Hopefully he can assist the recession, but unless he creates about 200,000 gardener jobs for the white house and anouther 150,000 for Camp David I’m not sure one man can do that much.

    Hopefully his insiration will get everyone to do the little they can to help, but it still won’t be exclusively his doing.

  2. Phil L

    His team is already trying to lower expectations, i.e. despite the campaign promises, it may take more than one term.
    I just hope he doesn’t follow through on his musings about tearing up NAFTA. The trade protectionists in his party, and U.S. organized labour, will be exerting pressure.

  3. Collette

    this is a bit of a response to both Marc’s post and a couple of the comments already posted.

    with Barack Obama’s election, I think things have already changed. racism runs deep, very deep, in America. it sounds like voter apathy does as well (in this historic election, there was still only 64% voter turnout). that he could inspire people to vote, and to vote for a black man, is in itself a major change in American politics.

    in a CBC comment I read this, and it’s a bit cheesy but I really liked it: “Rose Parks sat, so Martin Luther King could walk. Martin Luther King walked, so Barack Obama could run. Barack Obama ran, so that our kids can fly.”

    it’s no longer ludicrous that someone of colour can be president of the USA. THAT is inspiring. I hope all those kids out there are inspired too. inspired to overcome the challenges put before them, and to rise above those who try to knock them down for no reason other than the colour of their skin.

    nope, he can’t just wave his magic wand and fix everything. and of course he’s scaling back the expectations too. maybe he IS just telling us what he thinks we want to hear, but I am inspired by his words. his victory speech is radically different from traditional American sentiment. what he said is really, amazingly different!

    I also wonder if he’s for real. and I also hope that he is.

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