For those who missed it midday:
Yes, I know this blog has become the "All things Obama gossip sheet." It's just that time of the election season. Not only that, if you know me and have for awhile, you'll know that the ideas that Obama shares, his commitments and passions mirror my own. When I read The Audacity of Hope, I found myself nodding in agreement, and at times, tearing up.
It's not so much that Obama represents some hybrid vision of Republican and Democratic policy positions. It's that he represents a new kind of politics guided by an intelligent, ethical, compassionate optimism. And he makes his case for his brand of politics in language and practical details that resonate with me. In fact, for all the supposed conservative values of the Republican party, I don't see the promises of smaller government, better schooling without federal interference, more opportunity trickling down to the inner city, lower taxes for the middle class, a humble diplomacy or compassionate conservatism that both addresses the born and unborn. In fact, for all my alignment with their values, I'm trying to think of what the Republicans have actually done that I can applaud as matching that list of criteria.
On the other hand, Obama seems to grasp that we aren't in a war to determine which set of values is most correct. He recognizes the legitimacy of rightwing morals and the aims of protecting our own self-determined wealth. I think he rightly expects that we can be both compassionate and self-sacrificing while also creating opportunity for self-advancement.
I'm tired of the hollowness of rightwing rhetoric. I'm ready to try something new.