"Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next. Delicious Ambiguity." ~ Gilda Radner

Friday, January 04, 2008

OYEAH! OBAMA!

Hope soars!

I am still pinching myself...

Barack Obama declared Thursday night's Iowa's Democratic caucus winner! And by a handy little amount, I might add.

38, 30, 29...

No, those aren't my measurements...those are the three most glorious numbers in the world , music to many an American's ear this a.m....caucus percentages for Obama, Edwards and Clinton, respectively.

So much for Miss Inevitability in the Tall Corn State...can you believe it? Obama AND Edwards beat the Clinton Machine last night...

Well, like the song from The Music Man goes:

"Oh, there's nothing halfwayAbout the Iowa way to treat you, when we treat you,which we may not do at all. There's an Iowa kind of special chip-on-the-shoulder attitude we've never been without that we recall."

In other words, don't tell US who's gonna win our caucuses. We'll make that decision ourselves, thank you very much."

I am so proud to have been one of the first-time Iowa caucus-goers who helped push Obama over the top...

And I must admit, it was rather exciting down at ye ol' municipal building as folks poured in to gather in precinct preference groups for their candidate-of-choice. One of the biggest -- if not THE biggest -- turnouts here in ages, I understand. About 121 -- and folks of all ages, I might note! Just think...350,000 Democrats across the state in all...yowsa!

I gotta tell ya that my heart sank just a bit when John and I first walked in and the Edwards and Clinton camps' chairs were filling up rather quickly, and the Obama camp looked a little bare.

Hillary's gang had red and blue tablecloths, matching balloons and a spread of yummy-looking food...we had an empty ice cream bucket full of store-bought chocolate chip cookies, and later, a plate of homemade treats (thank you, Diane, darling) and a plastic pitcher of water...

"They probably paid with those balloons with PAC money," I quipped.

Ba-da bump.

But as 6:30 p.m. rolled into 7 and the caucus doors closed, the Obama camp was having to make room for more chairs. We had senior citizens, mid-lifers, 30-Somethings, high school seniors -- and even a few babies...we had teachers, school administrators, and we even convinced one undecided local pastor to join our group, to support our candidate. All in all, we had 29 folks.

Well, at first count we had 30, but one young high school gentleman -- and he knows who he is -- defected to the Edwards camp...ahem.

Final count -- Edwards 60, Clinton 32, and Obama 29.

So we didn't "win" our precinct exactly...but that wasn't really a surprise. I kinda figured, demographics here what they are, that Edwards would be the more favored candidate.

And I guess that's what is so miraculous, so invigorating, about Obama's big win here in Iowa. To borrow a quote from one of the Des Moines Register blogs this a.m.:

"Barack Obama's stirring victory in Iowa -- down home, folksy, farm-fed, Midwestern and 92 percent white Iowa -- says a lot about America, and also about the current mindset of the American voter. Because tonight voters decided that they didn't want to look back. They wanted to look into the future, as if a country exhausted by the last seven years wanted to recapture its youth." ~ Arianna Huffington of The Huffington Post"

Amen, Arianna!

Another interesting -- and surprise -- outcome of last night's caucus...guess who's going to the county democratic convention in March? Uh-huh. Me and my hubby. My hubby, I might add, that is a once-but-no-longer Republican. Yup. Whodathunk? We've been cancelling each other out at the polls for 27 years...

See, there really is Hope. Hope not only floats, it soars!

OBAMA! 'O8!

14 comments:

Thomas Moore said...

Last night's vicotry for Senator Obama is certainly an event indicative of a potential shift in Iowa Democratic politics. The same can easily be said for the clearly evangelical based victory of Governor Huckabee over Governor Mitt Romney. We have yet to fully understand what this shift means or how permanent it will be.

It also must be noted that while the Iowa Caucus is a long standing poltical tradition it has long been disproven as an accurate indicator of which candidate is actually likely to end up as the next ticket selection or actual President. Let us not forget Dick Gephardt, Howard Dean, or Bob Dole.

Reality is that between now and Super Tuesday countless changes will be made to victory plans, funding will be shifted, and demographics that are vastly different from that of the state of Iowa will also have their say in which candidate they would prefer. What we have as a result of last evening is an indication of what a percentage of the population of Iowa agrees on based upon 6 months of well funded simple rhetoric and photo ops with little more. History teaches us that between now and the general election candidate platforms will change based upon the needs of the canddiate to respond to the voting poulation's preferances and concerns. Bottom line, we do not have a final product yet from either party.

In closing I say this; The drama known as American politics has not even moved past the prologue of this next volume. Be advised hold your breath...

Anonymous said...

"Hope doesn't bring change. Hard work where you roll-up your sleeves and make change!"
-Hillary Clinton

Annie said...

Yes, Mr. Moore, I realize that
"we do not have a final product yet from either party" and that all candidates will mold their pitch to please those whom vote next...it ain't over till it's over, and the Iowa Caucus is but a beginning. But what a nice beginning, what an inspiring beginning...it gives many of us who are sick of the status quo and are yearning for change a little hope -- something we have not felt for a long time. And it was also encouraging to see so many people actually PARTICIPATING in our democracy by actually attending a caucus. It is good for everyone in our country, regardless of party affiliation or candidate of choice, when more and more people finally wake up to the fact that democracy is not a spectator sport.

Thanks for commenting!

Annie said...

And to the anonymous Hillary supporter...nice rhetoric, but that assumes that Obama isn't ready to roll up his sleeves and do the work...and I beleive he is...he's worked very hard all his life to pull himself up from humble beginnings and make it to where he is today...he is an inspiration -- no silver spoons, yet he made it...

You see, once people who once had no hope regain hope and a sense that change IS possible, change has a fighting chance. With hope, comes change, and with change comes a brighter future.

Change begins with hope. There is no hope in the status quo, or the past...and for so many of us, Hillary does represent the status quo...or, more to the point, the past. Folks in Iowa are, apparently, clamoring for something new...

Who knows how it will shake out in New Hampshire, or in other primaries...

At any rate, following the Iowa Caucuses, there is an air of possibility, of hope, of excitement...

It's all good...

Have a nice day...

Thomas Moore said...

Annie,

I can only offer my heartfelt agreement with your observation that democracy is not intended to be a spectator activity.

My only caviet to this point is that participation alone is insufficient; a nation based on a democratic ideal will still go to waste if the participating body is comprised of the ignorant. Learned participation ought to be the real goal.

I would be remiss to not also address the concept of hope. Only a fool would claim that the society we live in has reached it's maximum potential. With that said I must vehimetly disagree with any assertion that one lone woman, man, or governing body can give hope to any individual.

I submit that the only real sources of hope are 1.) The Lord, and 2.) that which the individual possesses within themselves. Biblically speaking I believe that Psalm 23 "A Psalm of David" well illustrates the hope that faith in God provides.

Hope also starts with the individual. We have the choice to wake up every day with the mindset that we have a purpose, and that we will strive to exceed that goal. Hope is a choice reflected in the attitude of the person.

Another individual cannot make that choice for you. An excellent example of this type of can do mind set is Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Justice Thomas emphasizes to us all that the ability to be self sustaining is the key to success. Justice Thomas also comes from a childhood of poverty in 50's/60's era Savanah, Georgia.

Justice Thomas throughout his entire career has refused to allow anything besides a commitment to excellence serve as his motivation. He did not put hope in another person, the government, or anything else. The end result was a Yale educated lawyer who sits on the Supreme Court of The United States.

Reality is that hope is an audacious concept. Websters New World Dictionary defines Audacity as somthing that is bold or fearless. It takes an audacious person to trust in themselves and God every day. It takes a bold fearless person to realize that they alone are responsible for their success or failure.

Most importantly reality is that it is the weak man who hides behind another. It is lazy who turn to others to define their existence for them.

In closing I urge Carpe Diem! Be audacious and be your own soruce of hope.

Annie said...

My dear Mr. Moore:

I do believe your last comment is the longest, most in-depth comment this blog site has ever had the priviledge of posting since its inception! Thank you!

Of course, since I don't know anyone by the name of Thomas Moore, my curiosity is piqued as to your true identity...or if your name is really Thomas Moore, I am left wondering how you came by this site...hmmm....

Anyway, back to our continuing conversation regarding Sen. Obama...

You stated, "...I must vehimetly disagree with any assertion that one lone woman, man, or governing body can give hope to any individual...Hope also starts with the individual. We have the choice to wake up every day with the mindset that we have a purpose, and that we will strive to exceed that goal. Hope is a choice reflected in the attitude of the person...Another individual cannot make that choice for you."

I could not agree with you more, Mr. Moore.

I'm not saying that my life's sun rises and sets on Mr. Obama. However, soley in the context of choosing a candidate to support in the upcoming presidential election, and considering that I'm old and jaded and cynical when it comes to politicians, I have to say that yes, as presidential candidates go, Mr. Obama offers me -- and many, many others, apparently -- hope that with him at the helm there may be hope for our country's -- and our children's -- future afterall.

Frankly, I'd love to see an Obama/Edwards ticket...but that's a discussion for another day.

Actually, I'm thrilled that we have three highly capable Democrats vying for the presidency...I'm thrilled that there is so much excitement and enthusiasm...

It sure beats apathy and feeling like your only choice is to vote for the lesser of two evils come election day...

I haven't been this excited about a presidential election since 1976 when I had a poster of Gerald Ford plastered across my dormitory wall...

LOL...

Yes, I was a young Republican back then...now I'm just an old Democrat...

But if I were an old Republican, Mr. Moore, I think I might be backing Huck...Mitt is just too damn good looking to be trusted...LOL...

Thomas Moore said...

Annie,

Fair enough.

To answer your question regarding name etc...

Yes my name is Thomas Moore, and I stumbled on to your blog some how while looking up information about Senator Obama and your state's caucus.

I do not know how that all works exactly as that computers and I have yet to settle our relationship.

I am honored to have provided the longest comment in the history of your blog, and have enjoyed this exchange a great deal.

A again a pleasure and I will keep your site in mind if you do not object for future reading.

All My Best and God Bless,

Thomas Moore

Annie said...

Cool!

You just stumbled upon my little ol'blog? Out of the gazillion sites on Barack Obama and the Iowa caucuses, mine actually registered high enough on the list out there in cyberspace for someone to actually find it without digging for days, nay, years? Wow! :)

You are most welcome to visit anytime, Mr. Moore, tho' I must warn you that I rarely touch on such heady topics as national politics.

If you have perused The Home Stretch at all, you will have no doubt noticed that it is usually filled with the mental meanderings of a midlife mom...chock full of 50-something angst...

Anyway, I certainly do not object to your visiting here again and again...feel free to comment whenevah..might I inquire where you are from?

Have you ever been to Ioway? I'm not from here...I'm originally from Ohio, which you might be able to glean from this site as if you dig around in the archives...

Anyway, I am so glad you found The Home Stretch. Come back often...

Anonymous said...

Annie - what do you think of Ron Paul?

annie said...

Well, in all honesty...I haven't paid a lot of attention to Ron Paul...what I know about him is mainly what I heard day in an day out over the radio playing in the background at work...he bought a lot of radio ads, I can tell you that. Ron Paul...Ron Paul -- one of the gals at the office grew rather tired of hearing Ron Paul's name and it became a sort of joke around the office...in fact, whenever I hear the name Ron Paul, I think of Rocky -- the gal at the office, not Rocky Balboa.

But I guess Ron Paul does have his following...

Cheers!

Anonymous said...

So, what do you think of Ron Paul?

-Only candidate to vote on issues according to the Constitution.

-Goals: abolish the IRS, CIA, FBI, and Department of Homeland Security.

-Create one central agency with far less workers and money spent above.

-Get out of ALL foreign countries immediately. Including "peaceful" countries where we still have staffed bases.

Obama wants to do none of that. None of the candidates do.

You apparently haven't done your research on ALL of the candidates to see which one is best.

annie said...

Um, no, anonymous, I have not done much of any research on all the candidates...I don't believe I ever said or inferred that I did. And certainly, I am not the one to go toe-to-toe extolling the virtues or highlighting the less-than virtuous whys and wherefores of said candidates.

I just know what I know -- and feel -- about Obama.

Darling, it takes everything I have just to get up and go to work each day and survive out there in the jungle we've come to know and love as Life.

I was, however, able to eek out an hour or two a few months back to go hear Sen. Obama speak in a town near here, and I liked and agreed with what I heard. My husband has read his book.

He has inspired both of us.

I also like what John Edwards says\ -- I hate big corporate fat cats -- and I don't really care about his $400 haircut, tho' that did make me wince just a little.

And frankly, I'm a "bring-home- -the-bacon-fry-it-up-in-a-pan- I-am-woman-hear-me-roar" kinda gal -- always have been -- and while I am thrilled we have a viable woman candidate for president of these United States, I just don't feel anything when I hear Hillary speak.

Sen. Obama speaks to me.

That's all I know.

Huck makes me laugh. Mitt makes me wary. Ron Paul? A tad 'fringish' for my tastes. But I do like the idea of abolishing the IRS...hmm..just imagine...

But seriously...I am just so happy that we have so many folks to choose from. How fortunate we Americans are...

I am on pins and needles awaiting the New Hampshire primary...

Stoney said...

Dear Ron Paul lover,

The beauty of our country is that we all can believe and choose a candidate based on our own criteria. Annie loves Obama because of the Hope and passion he stirs in her. You like Ron Paul because of issues that are important to you. I must ask you however when you make statements like:
Only candidate to vote on issues according to the Constitution.

Is this something you have heard in the media? Is this something you have checked out on your own? Have you researched every vote of every candidate???? I am not doubting he has voted according to the constitution. But you use the term ONLY CANDIDATE - I challenge this.
Goals: abolish the IRS, CIA, FBI, and Department of Homeland Security.
Now I agree that each of these depts may not have a purpose anymore and some have huge areas of improvements needed- but isn't it a little scary to give up the CIA and Homeland Security??? Little radical I say. And how probable is it? I don't like candidates that say radical things such as, if congress doesn't get ALL Americans healthcare then I will take theirs away...we all know that that just isn't going to happen.

You apparently haven't done your research on ALL of the candidates to see which one is best.

I love this line - "which is best" which is best in your opinion!!! YOUR opinion!!! God Bless America that you are allowed to have one, no matter how wrong it may be! Just kidding...just a little political humor! Now all of this is just MY opinion…Thank GOD people are passionate and willing to get involved this election! I guess for the first time I will thank George Bush for something!

Anonymous said...

I've done research on the top five front-runners v. Ron Paul for the last five years. Their voting records are available on CNN and their personal websites. It's not hard to compare.

Yes, Ron Paul has adhered to the Constitution the most.

Anne - why are you against the corporate people reaping in money? They have earned it, have they not? I have a friend whose father is the least educated in his family with an undergraduate degree, went out by himself (no help from parents or relatives), started up his own insurance company, and now it is being traded on the stock market! He is living large - REALLY LARGE! He earned it. You did not. I did not. Tough luck. Welcome to capitalist America. Our Constitution allows it, so deal with it, or move to communist China.

I don't understand why people feel the need to change our Constitution.