Not a lot of time this morning, but now that it’s all over but the shouting, I think most of us can admit that we aren’t terribly shocked. McCain wasn’t a very strong presidential candidate, but the fact that Obama beat him by relatively little anyway, given the situation, speaks volumes to the dearth of good political candidates.
Obama won’t ruin America. He might try, from Murdoc’s perspective, but America has weathered similar leaders before. More troubling than the election of Obama, as far as I’m concerned, are the gains in the Senate, the House, and the state governorships. Obama certainly should have an opportunity to implement some of his ideas.
I don’t think anyone would argue that Washington, DC, needs to be changed. Not necessarily because we need someone different than Bush, but because things are a mess, they’ve been a mess for a long time, and they’re on a road to an even bigger mess in the near- and long-term future. I don’t think Obama-brand politics is the change we needed, but I certainly will be glad to be proven wrong.
One thing that’s going to change, and I fear for the worse, is the nature of the dialogue surrounding racial issues. People who voted for Obama because he’s black won’t like to admit that they were acting racists the same as people who voted for McCain because he’s white. The charge of racism every time someone criticizes President Obama will get real stale real quick. I wonder if the storm of controversy that always surrounds the president will help or hurt so-called “race relations” in the long run.
One other thing all the rabid legions of Obama supporters should remember is that the Liberals haven’t had a President since the advent of the blogs and widespread internet journalism. They’ve always been the ones free to take potshots, not sit there and take it. They’re going to learn that many of the same criticisms leveled at Bush over the past eight years will apply equally to Obama, much like all the cries of change petered out once the Democratic congress took office after 2006.
One thing’s for sure. I’m going to be buying several more guns here before the end of the year.
Also, it’s pretty clear that the death knell of the mainstream press was premature. They played an amazingly critical part in this election, from openly beating the drum for Obama to hyping and contributing to the financial situation to suddenly ignoring the war. Despite claims to the contrary, their influence over America remains scarily strong.
Finally, I worry most about the war specifically and the military in general. I fear, now that Iraq is winding down, that there’s going to be pressure for some sort of “peace dividend” by scaling back the size and budgets of the military. This was disastrous in the 90s when America was at relative peace. More than anything, similar moves during the next four years could have unimaginable consequences.
Regardless, Obama will be my president.
UPDATE: From Steven Den Beste, who I more or less consider the single biggest influence in my starting this blog:
It’s easy to let yourself go in despair and start thinking things like “We are well-and-truly fucked” or “This is the worst of all possible outcomes”. But it isn’t true.
I think this election is going to be a “coming of age” moment for a lot of people. They say, “Be careful what you wish for” and a lot of people got their wish yesterday.
That woman who was so excited that she won’t have to pay for her gasoline or her mortgage will be disappointed, of course. The lunatic fringe following always is. But a lot of the less-lunatic who are celebrating wildly today are going to quiet down a bit come March or April when they realize that Obama is just another politician.
In the same light, all the doom-and-gloom Conservatives will see that, though things might be bad, it’s not really the end of the world.