Friday, August 29, 2008


This isn't a political blog but --- . This week Liz and I watched the Democratic Convention -- the first four days we watched mostly on PBS -- we watched the roll call moment when Sheldon Silver introduced Hillary who made the dramatic motion to nake it unanmous on ABC -- because we don't have cable here at Heart Lake. Last night, however, we went to the Montrose Theater to see the last few hours of the convention on a big screen, via CSPAN.

Yesterday on Democracy Now, Ralph Nader told us what was wrong with Joe Biden (stressing a bad consumer credit law) and complained because the Democrats are not far enough to the left. An Obama presidency won't be anywhere near as satisfactory as I (and many people who think as I do) would like. That's mot a reason to vote against Obama.

Earlier this year, I was in a room with Dave McReynolds of the War Resisters league and former Socialist candidate for president (1980 and 2000) and Green Party candidate for Senator (against Schumer in 2004.) In speaking of the Democratic field, Dave said, "We can't always get what we want -- we have to take what we can get."

There are good reasons to wish Barack Obama were more progressive (I don't have a better word) but as Al Gore said last night it was wrong in 2000 to think there was no difference between the candidates and it's wrong in 2008.

President Dwight Eisenhower ( who warned us against the military industrial complex) told us that we need changes in the way we elect the president. As I recall he advocated a parliamentary system. We need ways to strengthen minor parties -- proportional voting and representation would be a good start. But for now, we have two viable candidates for President.

So last night I decided (with Liz) for the first time in my life to put a political bumper sticker on our car. We're also going to put up a lawn sign for Obama here at Heart Lake -- something we've never done.

Today on Democracy Now, actor Wendell Pierce, echoed by professor and Baptist minister Michael Eric Dyson, said in effect that Obama does not get a free pass -- we have to keep pressure on him. But first, we have to elect him.

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