Wednesday, November 05, 2008

150.0 - A big change....and some hope

We interrupt our regularly scheduled diet & exercise rambles for the following political commentary:

I don't usually talk about politics here. Primarily because I'm a Republican Conservative and most of the folks who read my blog are on the other side of the fence and wouldn't want to hear it, and because, well, this is a diet & exercise blog.

But I can't help but write something today. Because I'm frankly shocked at myself at the 180 degree turn I've made in the past month.

It started with the financial crisis, when the Republicans insisted on choosing their ideologies over the rescue package. The smartest economists in our country were saying we were headed for a depression--we were on the edge of a precipice and God help us if the package didn't pass, one of them said. Yet John McCain and the majority of Republicans (and the talk radio people I regularly listened to--past tense) voted NO.

I was very unimpressed with McCain's handling of the situation, suspending his campaign and going to Washington to stir up trouble, asking Obama to delay the first debate. I thought that was a huge mistake even before the talking heads made their commentaries about it.

Then the debates themselves proved that Obama was smarter than I'd thought he was. I was not impressed with him in media interviews, which is likely because I was watching with a hugely conservative slant, with Rush Limbaugh preaching in my ear to influence my opinions (yeah, I don't listen to him anymore, either).

But after watching all the debates, there was no denying (for me) how McCain's responses to our problems (a spending freeze in January? buy the bad home mortgages, without consulting Paulson? $5000 health insurance credit? we paid $12,000 in health insurance premiums last year, so how is $5000 going to make a difference for ANYONE?) weren't what I wanted in a president.

And, even though I think she has potential, I was not happy with Sarah Palin as the VP choice.

In no small part, my decision to vote for Obama was influenced by my husband and my conservative/moderate friends from church. Saturday night we had a long discussion about the election, and a few people I thought were voting for McCain explained why there were voting for Obama.

It was enough to seal the deal.

After watching the speeches last night, I know in my heart it's the right choice for our country. I was not swept away by Obama during the campaign, but even I had tears in my eyes last night during his speech. IMHO, it's just a bonus he's black. A freaking huge historic bonus, but it's not what's going to make the difference. He is a self made man. Not part of the Bush or Clinton machines, or married to a wealthy heiress. I truly think he's the real deal.

And my word. The outpouring for him is unreal. When was the last time people cried over their President? JFK? Reagan? The excitement, enthusiasm, and involvement of our citizens are just as important as who our next leader is. And man, we've sure got that right now.

I'm praying for this man, like I've never prayed for a President before. He, and our country, have a rough ride ahead. But I'm so thankful that he's the one in the drivers seat. Because I think he's the right man for our time.

God bless America, and God bless our new President.


Marcy said...

ITA with your second to last paragraph :-)

jen said...

It's nice to be reminded that we don't have to get caught up in partisanship and can actually acknowledge good ideas wherever we see them. As a liberal Dem I should probably do a little more of that! I'm still pinching myself in disbelief that this actually happened!

MCM Mama said...

Very nice post! I'm a liberal dem ;o), so obviously I'm happy, but all I really want at this point is for people to stop fighting and to start working together to actually solve the problems.

Grumpy Chair said...

Nicely said Laura. I too, thought how is $5,000 enough for a family to have health insurance? That amount would barely buy a high deductible no co-pay policy for three.

I miss my TV boyfriend Glen Beck.

LG said...

I had a really nice post written out but blogger was mean.

I think America is great; where else can we disagree/discuss how we see politics? It's pretty great how you made your decisions. I really regard this election as maybe an end to ugly, over the top ads (I'm looking at you, Ms. Dole!).

I agree with MCM Mama; let's all stop fighting and work together.


Vickie said...

I am hopeful that he might set the standard for all the young black males growing up during his administration. He is educated. He is married to the mother of his children. He is self made coming from difficult circumstances. I hope he raises the bar of what these young men expect from themselves and expect from their children.

sharla*** said...

Very nicely said!

Helen said...

God bless YOU, Laura. I only hope that I could be as open-minded if things were opposite -- and I'm truly not sure I could be. You are amazing. I am THRILLED that Indiana made the right choice yesterday and I am SO GRATEFUL to people like YOU who made that happen. THANK YOU. :-)

Anonymous said...

Nice piece! So wonderful to see people can still think for themselves. If you are looking for some exceptionally intelligent conversation with Barack, listen/read this interview with Rachel Maddow... Barack Interview you can both see the video AND read the transcript of the interview. What a refreshing change from all the screaming, talking heads.

Cindy...154 said...

I feel hope for our country for the first time in ages. I think people had to really search their hearts this election. It really wasn't about race or political party. I'm glad the campaign is over, too. And the past 8 years. I love how you described your decision making process. It says it all.

G.G. said...

I really like this post. I hope others with similar backgrounds feel the same way about this as you do.

I feel like I know EXACTLY where you are coming from . . . .

Shauna said...

Oh Laura... bloody brilliant post :)

Anonymous said...

Good post, Laura. Like you, I am/was a conservative Republican. I actually got into a couple of heated arguments mostly in regard to the typical inflammatory fear-mongering statements that some conservatives make. So it wasn't so much that I changed my mind, but I just don't like that we set ourselves up to hate or be contemptuous of others.

I was REALLY impressed by both men's speeches last night, McCain for his graciousness, and Obama for his inspiration.

When I saw Obama and his family walk out last night I had the same reaction: I am committed to praying for him as I have never prayed for any other president.

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