Pop Culture Junkette

Addicted to pop culture.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Thought of the Day

First, let me make a major caveat that I am not counting any chickens before there is any hatching. However, if Obama wins in 2 weeks (as I think will happen and is looking more likely by the day), is there any precedent for such an event in world history? You will have someone who is a member of a minority that was not only enslaved but was disenfrachished and otherwise discriminated against in much of this nation at the time Obama was born. In fact, his parents' marriage was illegal in many states when it occurred in 1961. And yet, Obama is at the cusp of being elected president despite African-Americans constituting only about 13% of the US population. (Yes, I know Obama's mother is white, but I don't really think that matters in this analysis.)

Has there ever been another situation where a member of a minority group that was disenfrachised and otherwise discriminated against and been at the lower part of the socio-economic ladder been elected to the highest office in that nation? Mandela in South Africa doesn't apply because blacks are the large majority there; once they were enfranchised, a black leader was predetermined. (In some ways, the election of a white South African president would be an interesting albeit imperfect comparison.) There has never been an aboriginal leader of Australia or a Maori in New Zealand. A Catholic elected to lead Northern Ireland (if they had such elections) would present numerous similarities but it too hasn't happened nor has an Isreali Arab becoming the PM of Israel? Can anyone come up with a parallel that has actually happened?

The seeming uniqueness of what the election of Obama would mean is a small but real reason to support him. His election would represent perhaps the final triumph of the idea of America. The nation has not always lived up to its ideals, but it has (often) aspired to them, and over the centuries moved closer and closer to them. My favorite quote from Bill Clinton is “There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America." This election will hopefully reinforce that point, and the election of an African-American president would be in many ways the final overcoming of America's original sin. (I should stress that this alone is insufficient reason to support him, but Obama's intelligence, vision, and temperament provide ample additional bases to support him.)

Finally, I point out that the day before the inaugural (which is on a Tuesday) is MLK Day. Something quite fitting in that. And 3 weeks later is the bicentennial of the birth of our greatest president, Abraham Lincoln. The idea of a President Obama presiding over such an event would, one imagines, have brought some sort of smile to Lincoln's face.

And one more time: Knock on wood.


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Well, I Guess This Was Inevitable

When you select as your running someone whose foreign policy experience is based upon her state's proximity to Russia, whose executive policy experience is running an administration like Boss Hogg ran Hazzard County, and whose energy expertise, at best, makes her qualified to serve as King of Saudi Arabia, but who looks good, you only encourage this. Had McCain picked Lieberman, this movie would never have been made. (Of course, if he picked Charlie Crist or Lindsay Graham, it would have been in a very different genre.)


Thursday, October 02, 2008

Quote of the Day

"John McCain has already tapped me."
--Sarah Palin

Well, I guess we now know why he picked her.


Wednesday, October 01, 2008

A Good Omen?

For the first time in 102 years, both Chicago baseball teams have qualified for the post season. (For those who don't remember, in 1906, the "Hitless Wonders," the nickname affectionately given to the 1906 White Sox, pulled off one of the greatest upsets in World Series history beating 4 games to 2 the Cubs of Tinkers to Evers to Chance and who had gone 116-36 (the best winning percentage in baseball history).) And who is from Chicago, you ask--Barack Obama, of course. (He's a Chisox fan.)

McCain's favorite team, the Arizona Diamondbacks, had a 4 1/2 game lead on August 29, only to collapse and lose the pennant to the Dodgers.

I'm not saying it means anything (and all the polling is a little more important) but . . . .

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Hey everyone! Remember me? I missed you all!

Anyway, just wanted to make a plug for everyone to watch this season's The Amazing Race because I personally know one of the contestants. Sarah of Sarah and Terrence is my best friend's sister-in-law. Go Sarah and Terrence! Apparently they are heavily featured on this coming week's episode.