In a stunning development, Barack Obama accepted the Democratic party’s nomination of him for president last night in Denver.
OK, so it wasn’t stunning. As he walked out, what was stunning was a producer/event coordinator’s decision to wash out the cheers of over 80,000 people with some seriously cheesy inspirational music... I mean, the tune was bad. And loud. If Obama loses, it’s because that song caused millions of independent voters to turn the channel.
The blunder, as bad is it was, still didn’t compare to the infamous “Balloons” moment of the 2004 convention. How can you trust a man to lead if his team can’t even release the balloons properly?
Fortunately, Barack Obama took to the mic and pulled this particular moment out of the shit basket, refusing to allow the Democratic instinct to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory to prevail. As the terrible, terrible song faded, you could hear the cheers of the people just before Obama began.
Next week- and beyond- the Republican party will say don’t vote for Obama because he is popular, in an attempt to discredit their opponent. It’s a strategy that could only come from a party with a sitting President with a less than 20% approval rating.
To make an analogy to the cause that has defined my own life, sex education and condoms, the only way I can sum up how I feel about this election is this: Barack Obama is fresh. The air bubble has not been punctured, and he hasn’t been carried in the wallet of special interests long after his expiration date has passed. McCain, on the other hand, is the equivilent of taking the old ideas of the current administration, turning them inside and giving them a shake- then expecting everything to turn out OK.
As I wrote that somewhat tasteless line, Chris Matthews just said on TV: “That was what we call, in politics, ”a lowball".
In terms of McCain, his moment to lead the country came and went in 2000. Back when he was too independent for the Republican party to back him and his campaign was derailed in South Carolina by rumors that he’d fathered a child whose skintone resembles that of Barack Obama’s.
So, all things considered, as those kinds of forces begin to line up behind John McCain instead of in front of him, I think a little hardball, or lowball, is warranted.
Someone else who gave a great speech tonight was Vietnam war vet Al Gore. Which makes me even more worried than I was earlier this week about Obama’s chances. I really don’t want to be blogging like this in eight years, writing about how well the 2008 Democratic losing candidate Barack Obama did in introducing some upstart Albino senator from Alaska.
I say it’s time to buy a big box of condoms- er, ideas, at a deeply discounted rate.