Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A Rousing Rally for John Edwards

This morning I got up, checked my e-mail over my morning coffee, posted an entry to my blog that I had written the night before (see the following critique of Bush's last SOTU address), and headed out the door to a rally being held in North Tulsa at the Transportation Workers Union Local #514 Hall. The rally was being held for John Edwards. I realize that I may be perceived to be somewhat of a flip-flopper on my presidential choice for 2008. As I have explained to anybody who will listen, I know myself too well, and I know that once I choose a candidate, it will be very hard for me to switch my allegiance to another candidate come Convention time in Denver. So although I have posted entries on my blog that suggest that I am supporting Barack Obama (and I am impressed with his eloquent style, his vision of hope and unity, and his ability to inspire us to be our very best selves), and I have been vocal about my misgivings about Hillary Clinton, I am also a realist, and I know that whoever gets the nod in August from the Democratic Party is the candidate I will support in November. I have survived the ravages of a senseless, remorseless, ugly, and fear-based republican administration, and I will not in good conscience support any candidate that even hints at continuing any of Bush/Cheney's horrendous policies. So I went to hear Senator Edwards this morning, in large part to thank him for taking the time to stop and visit with a group of supporters here in Tulsa, Oklahoma (admittedly not the center of anyone's political universe), and once again and in person to applaud John Edwards' consistent message that this country has a huge problem, and at the root of the problem is a growing chasm between the ultra-rich and the very poor. John Edwards' "two Americas" theme is one that he has been espousing for many years, and it rings even truer today than it did when he first pointed it out to those of us whose situations are more comfortable than many other people's lives.

I was proud to be standing in the Tulsa Union Hall holding up a John Edwards for President sign, and I was prouder still that fellow Tulsans reserved their loudest applause and their longest standing ovation for Edwards' remarks about his plan to get the U.S. out of Iraq. It may be the "economy stupid," but here in the heartland of America, it is not completely lost on Okies that the economy here is inexorably tied to an ongoing and indefensible occupation halfway around the world. As I stepped out of the Hall after shaking Edwards' hand (twice), I was met with a very strong wind (40 mph, I later learned), and I thought that this breeze will blow clean across this country and sweep away the garbage that has piled up over the last seven years. It will sweep into power a new and better adminstration and things will change.

I just want to say to all of my friends and acquaintances who are so worried that the fight between Billary and Barack is going to tear the Democratic party apart - relax, we're Democrats, we pick and poke, but in the end we're not going to allow a republican, no matter how wealthy or devious he may be, claim the (White) House that will be ours in November. Viva la revolucion! Si se puede! Yes we can, and we will. Can't you just taste the change in the air?

Here's a link to the Fresno Bee's endorsement of John Edwards.

John Edwards for President 2008

Paul Krugman's column in the NYTimes (February 1, 2008), The Edwards Effect.

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