Barack Obama

Obama and Me (and 4200 Other People)

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I generally try to avoid politicians. They mostly say what they think I want to hear–and they are always wrong because what I want to hear that they are going to get the government to leave me alone and give me back my tax dollars.

That being said, I decided that since I am married to a wonderful woman who happens to be a Democrat that I would buy her a politcal present–tickets for the cheap seats to the Barack Obama rally here in the People's Republic of Charlottesville last night. (We had managed to miss the earlier and much pricier "Conversation with Hillary Clinton" when she came to town in September.)

In any case, the tickets were so cheap that we didn't get any seats, but instead stood for about 3 and a half hours as the temperatures fell toward freezing. Since Charlottesville is a university town, the crowd was amply supplied with students. My guess is that racial make up of the attendees was about 90 percent white and 10 percent black.

I went with vague hopes that Obama would surprise me. For the most part he didn't

Just before Obama showed up, the campaign passed out posters with the campaign slogan "Change We Can Believe In." The Illinois Senator was introduced by Virginia's Gov. Tim Kaine who early on had endorsed him for president. Below is a list from my notes of many of the promises Obama made to the crowd.

"The reason you folks are here is because you are sick and tired of George W. Bush."

"You are sick and tired of an administration that treats the Constitution as a nuisance to be avoided."

"You are tired of lack of progress on critical issues like health care and energy and education."

"Most of all, you are tired of a war that should have never been authorized." (the crowd roars)

"Every person in America will have heath care as good as mine and a world-class education for every American child." That education would be achieved by requiring pre-K schooling and by recruiting "an army of new teachers." He promised the teachers that he would "work with them, not against them." (covers NEA base)

He also promised to make college affordable for every student and set up "national service opportunities to help pay off student loans." (students roar)

"Some people in Washington are saying that Americans should elect me because I know how to work the system. The problem is that the system hasn't been working for Americans." (not so veiled attack on Hillary Clinton).

"I have the willingness to take on the special interests; to get money out of politics; and make Congress accountable to you not lobbyists. (money out of politics? This from a politician who has raised $75 million for this contest.)

Among other things that he said the Obama administration would do is achieve energy independence, corporate average fuel economy standards for automobiles to 40 miles per gallon. (same promises since Richard Nixon)

"First thing I will do is bring our boys and girls home from Iraq."

"There is no military solution to Iraq; there is only a political solution."

"I may not have the experience that Washington likes, but I have the experiece that America needs."

"I've been called a hope peddlar, a hopemonger. I stand guilty as charged."

"I want to break the fever of fear that has come to dominate our politics."

"We will go after Al Qaeda; we will lock down loose nuclear weapons around the world. Close Guantanamo and restore habeas corpus. We do not ship people off to tortured in other countries." (hope so)

"When I am president I will wake up every single day thinking about how I can make your lives better." (please just leave me alone)

Obama's visit to our town was quite profitable. The local paper reported:

Organizer James B. Murray said the gathering was the largest paid crowd that Obama has drawn anywhere as a presidential candidate and noted that the fundraiser out-raised Clinton's previous Charlottesville total of $200,000 by more than $100,000.

The crowd seemed to like what they heard. And why not? A lot of the rally speech is just a long list of promises without any price tags attached.

NEXT: Contra Ortega

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  1. And if the price tag were attached, I’m doubtful the cheers would have been any less fervent.

  2. These next few years are going to totally rock!

  3. Please digg this. If you don’t have a digg account, please get one; it is the best way to drive traffic to Reason.com

  4. OMG! If no one votes can we just kick Bush out of the White House and just let it stay empty?

  5. Congratulations, Ron, in somehow being able to discern actual English words in what must have seemed like a wall of white noise.

  6. He also promised to make college affordable for every student and set up “national service opportunities to help pay off student loans.”

    They already have this program. It’s called “getting a job.”

  7. “We do not ship people off to tortured in other countries.”

    A nod to the United Torturers & Interrogators Local 203? I know I’m against the offshoring of our torture industry.

  8. Ron wrote, “I am married to a wonderful woman who happens to be a Democrat…”

    Nothing personal Ron, but if she is a Democrat she can’t be wonderful. It’s impossible.

    PS How come you haven’t converted her? Or at least changed her to an independent.

  9. I know this isn’t a novel observation, but “college” truly is turning into high school for 18-21 year olds. And grad school is turning into the new college.

    It’s all so goofy.

    I know this also isn’t a novel observation. But leftie politicians such as Obama really do prove the maxim about having a hammer and every problem resembling a nail. And the American populace, by and large, now buys the whole idea. God, democracy sucks.

  10. “You are sick and tired of an administration that treats the Constitution as a nuisance to be avoided.”

    “You are tired of lack of progress on critical issues like health care and energy and education.”

    Kind of a nuisance how federal meddling in health care and energy and education are prohibited in the Constitution — specifically, the Tenth Amendment.

  11. I know this isn’t a novel observation, but “college” truly is turning into high school for 18-21 year olds. And grad school is turning into the new college.

    Yes, thanks to people going to school on the government cheese, people like myself who actually worked to pay for school are seeing their degrees degrade in value.

    Thanks Obama!

    Oh, and if college becomes the new high school, then real high schoolers will have a tougher time finding jobs. Since these people tend to be from poorer tax brackets, Obama is in effect hurting the poor.

  12. Ron wrote, “I am married to a wonderful woman who happens to be a Democrat…”

    Nothing personal Ron, but if she is a Democrat she can’t be wonderful. It’s impossible.

    Ummm, Terry, most of us don’t judge a mate’s worth based solely on political affiliation. It’s kinda far down the list, behind such things as kindness, considerateness, personality, hotness, etc.

  13. He also promised to make college affordable for every student and set up “national service opportunities involving toting guns in the middle of a civil war in Darfur to help pay off student loans.”

    Fixed.

  14. If Bailey doesn’t like Obama’s blather, there are two ways to do something about it:

    1. Ask him questions designed to reveal the flaws in his proposals and then upload and promote the response. If you can’t do that of him, Kaine is so dumb (lonewacko.com/blog/archives/004619.html) even a Reason contributor could show him up.

    2. Shame the MSM into asking him real questions instead of just jotting down his misleading or incomplete statements.

    I note that the Dems want people to capture “MacacaMoments” for them. Reason could respond by encouraging people to ask real questions as described above.

  15. Kind of a nuisance how federal meddling in health care and energy and education are prohibited in the Constitution — specifically, the Tenth Amendment.

    prolefeed, I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed that!

  16. like a wall of white noise

    Actually, half white and half Kenyan, right?

  17. God, I hate responding to LoneWhackOff, but…

    If you’d have READ THE FULL ARTICLE you would have seen that Ron went as a guest, not as a reporter, and just decided to take notes.

    I suppose I’m asking to much, however, since it’s likely you can’t read…

  18. TLB | October 30, 2007, 3:51pm | #

    Reason could respond by encouraging people to ask real questions as described above.

    Really? Wow. THANKS LONEWACKO!!

    Hmm. No, wait. Now that I reconsider…

    I think Reason should respond by encouraging people to make fun of *you*, your endless font of Douchedom, the cornucopia of Stupid you lavish upon us daily, with a special touch of NonsensicalWordFunging to provide that cherry of Gay on top of a Sundae of Inanity…

    [brought to you by the Gilmore Alliance to Drive LoneWacko Away From Hit&Run By Any Means Necessary]

  19. You are sick and tired of an administration that treats the Constitution as a nuisance to be avoided.

    ‘cept that second one in the bill of rights…that one needs to be avoided…

  20. My dear husband persists in calling me a Democrat, when in fact I consider myself an independent. I’ve even voted Libertarian a time or two (Gore v Bush, most recently)but you gotta admit that the Lib party guys are often nutjobs. And the Republicans that run in Virginia tend to be so socially conservative that I can’t vote for them, either. And you can’t say that the Reps beat the Dems on spending these days, so what’s a girl to do?

    And thanks, prolefeed. I think so too.

  21. Is there a town in America that wouldn’t be cheering if Santy Claus turned up two months early?

    I notice Obama didn’t say anything about invading Pakistan whether they like it or not.

  22. It’s a predictable outcome. If your plan involves stopping a war that’s running around 160 billion dollars a year, it’s just natural for a democrat to thing “wow! what will I do with this windfall!”.

    The answer it seems would be avoiding such a costly war and the eventual windfall resulting from it’s end.

    Something some libertarians got all along, and others just couldn’t grasp and were required to add a “neo” to their moniker.

  23. [brought to you by the Gilmore Alliance to Drive LoneWacko Away From Hit&Run By Any Means Necessary]

    I’ll help!
    Can we change the name to The United Gilmore Alliance to Drive LoneWacko Away From Hit&Run By Any Means Necessary, now?]

    Huh? Huh? Can we? Pleeeeze?

  24. OK, the TUGATDLWAFH&RBAMN it is.

  25. whoa is that really ron’s wife posting? My sarcasm detector is not going off, but the use of words like “nutjob” and “what’s a girl to do?” indicates a person that does not fit my predjudiced assumptions about what ron’s wife would be like.

  26. Barack Obama, quoted by Ron Bailey:

    “First thing I will do is bring our boys and girls home from Iraq.”

    Barack Obama, in September when asked if he would commit to withdrawing all U.S. combat troops from Iraq by the end of his first term as President:

    “I think it’s hard to project four years from now . . .”

  27. Very little of what congress does is in the scope of their alloted power.If we cut them back to what was intended we could reduce taxes by half.Of course they would have very little to promise on the campaign trail and as a result,few would make a living out of managing our lives.It’s the power that attracts these people to public ‘service’.

  28. That was definitely Ron’s wife.

    Sincerely,
    Epstein’s Mom

  29. Dugg.

    Good post. But he didn’t promise everyone a pony?

  30. posters with the campaign slogan “Change We Can Believe In.”

    That’s the audacity of advertising: Grandiose emptiness. Just say no. Just do it. Obey your thirst. Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow. No new taxes. No child left behind.

    Obama seems to do it better than most, though.

  31. Warren, come hither …

  32. hay Warren – wanna star in a scheisse video with Cartman’s mom and me?

  33. “The reason you folks are here is because you are sick and tired of George W. Bush.”

    “You are sick and tired of an administration that treats the Constitution as a nuisance to be avoided.”

    And, if Obama becomes President, I’m sure we’ll have reached the same point for him by January 21, 2009.

  34. [brought to you by the Gilmore Alliance to Drive LoneWacko Away From Hit&Run By Any Means Necessary]

    I’ll help!
    Can we change the name to The United Gilmore Alliance to Drive LoneWacko Away From Hit&Run By Any Means Necessary, now?]

    Huh? Huh? Can we? Pleeeeze?

    I no longer have to read LoneWacko posts, now that I’ve installed TrollBan TM software on my computer, deleting the posts unread. If you have a relatively new computer, you may find that this software has been quietly preinstalled at the factory. On the right side of the screen, if you see an up-pointing arrow, hold it down whenever you see LoneWacko’s handle(s) — and they slither upward and vanish, unread!

    I eagerly await TrollBan 2.0, where this process will proceed without human intervention, but really, unless you’re quadripelegic or so heavily impaired by alcohol that you can’t perform simple tasks (presumably: The Wine Commonsewer) don’t you owe yourself the pleasure of taking advantage of this invaluable software today?

    TrollBan TM — Making a Better Tomorrow Today!

  35. … up-pointing down-pointing arrow …

    Note to self: RTFM!

  36. Iraq is no place for our boys and girls to be playing. There are guns and bombs and stuff over there!

    I’m willing to bet if and when a president or VP Obama send troops to a clusterfrack of his choosing, the “boys and girls” will be “soldiers and marines”.

    OK, small point.

  37. “Some people in Washington are saying that Americans should elect me because I know how to work the system. The problem is that the system hasn’t been working for Americans.” (not so veiled attack on Hillary Clinton).

    I thought the not so veiled attack on Hillary Clinton came when he said that the war in Iraq “should have never been authorized.”

  38. TrollBan TM — Making a Better Tomorrow Today!

    I call IP infringement. This is clearly industrial espionage at work. You will note date and time priority claim. You’ll be hearing from my attorneys.

    [Huffs and puffs, … stalks away]

  39. …the “boys and girls” will be “soldiers and marines”.

    OK, small point.

    But valid.

  40. “Change We Can Believe In.”

    Or, at a minimum, Beliefs We Can Change In.

    And yeah, what Seamus said. “A war that should never have been…” um, fought? Started? Not even Allowed to Happen. Authorized.

    Reall subtle, Barack.

  41. “First thing I will do is bring our boys and girls home from Iraq.”

    Because people who voluntarily join the military are children! And victims, don’t forget they are victims

  42. I decided that since I am married to a wonderful woman who happens to be a Democrat that I would buy her a politcal present–tickets for the cheap seats to the Barack Obama rally

    Translation: So when it shows up that I donated to the Obama campaign, remember I did it for my wife.

  43. Translation: So when it shows up that I donated to the Obama campaign, remember I did it for my wife.

    Hell, that’s the excuse straight guys going to the ballet use. It works. It’s battle tested. Don’t knock it.

  44. Yeah, but then again there is math. Paying for almost all of the most crack potted social programs costs days compared to what it costs to pay for Iraq.

    Eight thousand a year to shoot brown people or some money to help pay for doctors….

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