Saturday, August 23, 2008


If Joe Biden is change we can believe in, then I'm the Easter bunny.

After all of his rhetoric about change, Barack Obama selects for his Vice Presidential running mate one of the most deep-seated, old-school, partisan, party-line politicians that Congress has to offer; the same Congress that has accomplished nothing in the last two years and has lower approval ratings than President Bush, even though they do not suffer from the same mass media maligning.

So much for hope and change; political expedience wins again.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Campaign Ad

Disclaimer: Sometimes my sense of humor is very wry and over-the-top. Please accept my apology if this is too vivid or harsh. I often wrestle with writing to inform, to affirm, or to inflame; I think I may have lost this battle.

Open: A slightly past middle-age, lower middle-class white couple sits at a table over a check book, obviously anxious over their bills littered across the table. The couple looks at one another in obvious concern.
“In trying times…”

The couple looks up at the viewer.
“…America needs a President that understands,”

Scene change: A young black woman, on the front porch/stoop of an inner-city shack. She turns from looking forlornly at something over her shoulder and fixes her despairing gaze on the viewer.
“…a President that knows where Americans are coming from,”

Scene change: Slow motion shot in the front of an unemployment office; an obviously tired and beaten middle-aged white male makes his way dejectedly into the office as a homeless woman sits on the sidewalk eating out of a can, and to the right the police wrestle a young Hispanic man into a squad car.
“a President that recognizes where things are going,”

Scene change: Show a picture of Obama with that stern, half confident, half cocky smirk and that gleam in his eye as he looks at something in the distance that only he can really see.
“and has the courage and character to change our course.”

Dramatic pause with background music, fade a flag into the bottom half of the screen with Obama’s face.
“But he can’t do it alone.”

Scene snaps: Flash back through the characters and capture their inquisitive and hopeful looks; the couple, the mother with child, the unemployed male, the homeless woman, the police and the suspect.
“He needs Americans like you by his side, and his Vice President will be someone like you,"

Scene snaps: Capture genuine relieved smiles…leave out the suspect.
“…like him.”

Scene change: Strong patriotic Obama standing near a flag ready to take on the world.
“So, keep your BlackBerry close.”

Scene snaps: Smiles slightly fading into confusion…include the suspect (minus the confused look), and introduce a well dressed and obviously employed black male walking confidently through the scene past the homeless woman and the unemployed man.
“You will be the first to know who will stand by Obama to make certain your voice is heard,”

Scenes snaps: The couple is now completely confused, anxiety creeping back in; the mother sits down on the steps in renewed and resigned despair; the homeless woman and unemployed man stare at the well dressed man as his BlackBerry ring-tone sings out Hail to the Chief and he slows down almost to a stop in their midst to address the incoming message (completely unaware of their presence); the police pull a BlackBerry from the suspect’s back pocket (almost clueless as to what it is) as the suspect strains indignantly to look over his shoulder, obviously interested in the incoming message (his ring-tone is Ludacris).
“and together, we will change the course of our nation…(slight pause)”

Scene snaps: The couple embraces to console each other; the man eyes the viewer in disgust and disappointment as his wife, her face hidden, begins to sob. The mother on the porch has set the child down and has her head down in her hands. The man checking his BlackBerry is pleased with what he sees and looks up in a celebratory manner and his countenance changes immediately when he notices the homeless woman and unemployed man staring at him; the man casually disengages and hurries off to the safety of his office (inside the unemployment office), giving only a slight, anxious glance over his shoulder as he reaches for the door. The police, ignoring the suspect, both stare dumbfounded and incredulous at the viewer as the suspect coolly finishes reading the message on his BlackBerry and stuffs it back in his pocket (unfazed).
“…and restore hope.”

Scene change: Phase into a screen shot with Obama and his BlackBerry, and slow to a stop on his smile.
“Barack Obama, change you can believe in.”

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Economics or Empathy

Who better to answer the nation's housing market woes than a guy whose family securely owns seven houses?

I’m confused about what the latest attack ad approved by Barack Obama is saying.

It starts by implying that McCain’s faith in the economic fundamentals that made the US what it is today is misplaced. For example: the fundamental that if you spend/invest $200,000 on a $400,000 home you will likely make out like a bandit, but if you spend/invest $400,000 on a $200,000 home, you will likely lose your shirt.

You can appreciate the economic fundamentals without appreciating the current economic state, because the fundamentals are sound. In fact, it is a lack of appreciation and understanding of those sound economic fundamentals that has gotten many in their current situation.

The economic marketplace is no picnic, and for years people hoping to get rich quick have been having their butts handed to them by a market that does not share the Democratic Party’s bias for the less economically fortunate or intellectually diligent. How the failure of many Americans to perform even a basic risk/benefit analysis amounts to a federal fiscal responsibility is well beyond my comprehension.

The attack ad went on to portray McCain’s response to a question ultimately about Cindy McCain's, his wife, portfolio as evidence that he is so wealthy he can’t even recall how wealthy he is. I’m not sure how McCain’s inability to answer questions about his wife’s economic ventures is proof that he cannot relate to the needs of Americans.

If you ask most non-wealthy Americans how much money is in their savings account, they couldn’t tell you; imagine if you asked how much was in their spouse’s account. Most people have to check their pockets before they can tell you accurately how much money they have on their person, so there’s no way they’ll be able to tell you how much money their spouse is carrying.

You don’t need to know how many jellybeans are in that jar at the carnival, how Barack Obama could be a friend and parishioner of Jeremiah Wright for nearly twenty years without ever tasting the Kool-Aid, or how much money your spouse may be carrying in order to know that if Americans spend more money than they have (even if they spend it on those they deem less fortunate...versus dreams of getting rich quick flipping real estate), they will ultimately go bankrupt.

It seems to me that the Obama campaign’s latest derisive and divisive attack ad demonstrates clearly that Obama does not understand the fundamentals of economics in America, and one obvious reason is likely his inability to relate to real people’s real situations; real people like me.

Americans need to answer one simple question when it comes to the nation’s money: do you want someone who knows economics (Republicans) or someone that simply purports to “know your pain” (Democrats) making the economic decisions? Just because a person has had a heart attack does not qualify them to perform open heart surgery; leave that to the surgeon who has likely taken better care of his body using the same knowledge that he’ll use to operate on others.

Republicans and Democrats alike are filthy rich. Are Republicans being truthful when they say they know economics? You better believe it. Are Democrats being truthful when they say they “know your pain?” Not even a little.

I’m me, and I approved this message.