Friday, October 31, 2008

This blog endores Obama for President

Thankfully, this election has offered up one of the better pairs of candidates in some time. The debate, has mostly centred on issues; but still, we all could have done with a little less "Joe the Plumber" palaver, and a little more discussion of some of the very serious issues facing the US - perhaps the most serious litany of issues since the Great Depression and subsequent World War (or maybe more serious).

What is somewhat alarming is that neither candidate has had the fortitude to really begin to talk directly with voters about some of the seemingly unfavorable choices Americans must make in the next few years. All of them involve a move away from personal consumption and, in many cases, extravagance, to choices affecting affecting long-term future and prosperity. Never an easy talk at any time, but one that has to be started sometime - and sometime soon.

These choices involve beginning to slay the national debt time-bomb, the health-care crisis, the future style and cost of US interventionism, educational reform, climate change initiatives that must occur, and Social Security reform. Oh, and did I forget to mention managing the current economic crisis?

In short, there's no shortage of issues upon which the next president could prove himself to be one of the most remarkable presidents in the history of the union (or prove himself a poser at a critical time in history).

And while I have a soft spot for any tough-fighting (and effective) maverick like John McCain, I just can't get past his choice of Sarah Palin as running mate. In the end, her simple lack of knowledge about important worldly things - things a president has to have a handle on from Day One on the job - shows that this was more a choice designed to help McCain win, than thinking about what was best for the country. And now, more than ever maybe, we need a president who`s thinking about what`s best for the whole country.

On the other side of the presidential coin, we have Obama. He`s a man of obvious charm, but more importantly, intellect. That he`s been able to draw a wider and wider constellation of talented individuals towards him, like former Fed Chairman Paul Volker, and former Secretary of State Colin Powell, shows that they believe he`s got what it takes to do the job.

In my view, he`s been able to draw people together, rather than divide them, and this will be a much needed talent in the years to come.

Whether he does or will of course, depends upon many things, including getting elected.

Whether you agree with my choice or not, democracy, an exceptionally unusual privilege demands some hard choices on your part: participation.

Wikipedia: John McCain
Wikipedia: Barack Obama

Platform: John McCain
Platform: Barack Obama

Please feel free to add your comments - however, please keep it civil, and use your frontal lobes, rather than the lizard portion of your brains.


Rick said...

Well put. I think that anyone with the wherewithal to read your blog has already made up their mind, but I enjoyed reading your thoughts. Thanks!

venter said...

I didn't think a politician that was less knowledgeable than GW on most political issues could possibly be trotted out as a potential president (McCain is getting old)until they dug up that dolt Palin. I don't know how anyone in their right mind could vote for a ticket with Palin on it. Obviously, almost half of the electorate is as ignorant as Palin herself.

Surplus Stock said...

Finally it seems after a long awaited battle our prayers have been answered. I had been supporting Obama right from the start and hopefully he can uplift our image in front of the world. Anyone watching the elections would have known that the odds were in favor of Obama, it was a just the concern of the Bush administration pulling out something that would ensure a Republican victory but i’m more than glad that this historic event took place. Best wishes to him from Stock Disposal ! Celebration bash at night here I come!

Anonymous said...

Jay, your blog is great. I just finished Expert Political Judgment by Tetlock on this blog's recommendation. I appreciate that you read outside of our field of finance and apply it back to finance.

[OK, now, flame on:]

I believe you're Canadian, so your opinion on Obama-McCain should be treated with that in mind.

Also, unless I missed it, your blog offered no endorsement of Stephen Harper, Stephan Dion or Gilles Duceppe. Nor did I see any analysis on the election. Are Canadians that embarrassed of their country? Or was Harper such a shoo-in that it didn't merit a single pixel or keystroke on your blog?

"Perhaps the most interesting thing about Canada is that it is not part of the United States." -- J. Bartlet Brebner, Canadian historian.

[flame off]

Anonymous said...

Jay, the book you recommended was Upside/Downside by Ron Dembo. Also very good. I also thought the Tetlock book was good, but don't recall where I got the recommendation to read it.

So my praise is still sincere, just as muddled as my memory... :)

Jay Walker said...
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Jay Walker said...
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Jay Walker said...

Thank you for the compliment. I don't think anything less of it because you're an American, just as I don't think anything less of my editorial opinion because I'm Canadian. What binds us together as human beings is far greater than what separates us as nationalities.

Compliments and respectful opinions gratefully accepted at this blog. :-)

Joe said...

I have to dispute the so called issues election. I failed to see much real discussion on issues, and certainly not specific solutions for issues. You yourself stated that some great economis issues were not discussed. What we had was George Bush sucks his policies didn't work. Some people need to pay more taxes. That money needs to go to people who need health care. The ware was not a good idea. On the McCain side it was ditto to whatever Bush said. What great issues discussed? That hogwash. We had on old hack and a guy that has less managerial experience than i do. That's a great choice? Are you kidding me? This guy stands no chance of making a difference. The country has gotten itself into a great mess. I don't like Obama's socialist polices but even i have to admit that his inevidable inability to make much of a difference will be because the Fed and our government have gotten us into a real hole. I feel sorry for him to come into the office at a time when no one can succeed. One thing i still have yet to understand, when was moving to more socialism a change? We have been moving that way for most of the last 100 years. Sometimes back but mostly forward toward that end. What the heck change is he talking about? He represents exactly what we have already been doing. That's not a change. Change is throwing out the ridiculous policies of the last 60 years that have not worked. Abolishing the federal reserve that creates banking crisis, and instituting free banking. Getting rid of the farm subsidies that cause poverty in the third world and give money to people money not to grow food, when there are people the world over starving. Getting rid of the department of eductaion that does a horrible job of educating kids and does a good job of getting kids to become future mind slaves of the state. and on and on. We already had 40% top tax rates. That is not change. We have plenty of governemnt subsidies for companies and pollution credits for sulfer dioxide. How is a carbon tax and money to renewable fuels a change in policy in any way imaginable. Only if you out that tax payer money will be given to a different set of people, is that a change. But the priciple is exactly the same. He had more money in the advertising game to spend than the old fart (that even most republicans didn't want) to get us to buy his brand of soft drink over the other guys. Couple with the horriblely run government and most would have voted for any jackass over the slothful mugs on the other side.

Jay Walker said...

Joe, while you have some interesting opinions, you should use the paragraph (return) function to improve readability.

Reading is much easier if organized, and sufficient "white space" to ease reading.

Thanks for coming by though.


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