Nearly 2 years ago Barrack Obama began a campaign for the White House by stating his desire to change the nature of politics in America. He talked about what he felt was wrong with politics in Washington and what he believed needed to be changed. In his announcement address, he coined the phrase “The Politics of Destruction”. He may not have been the one who originated the term but he IS the one who has made it real for me. He made it real for me, over the course of this campaign, by being an example of what he meant.
I like his idea! I have always believed that people should win elections when their ideas are better and not because they are more adept at tearing down their opponents enough to make them selves look good enough to elect. Under the “Politics of Destruction” we continue to elect the lesser of two evils rather than the candidate with the best ideas. That’s what Barrack Obama intends to change.
As example, today the McCain campaign is releasing it newest campaign ad. The ad alludes to Barrack Obama’s “Star” status and directly associates his fame with that of Brittany Spears and Paris Hilton. Brittany Spears, you will recall, is painted in the press as a frequently relapsing drug addicted, alcoholic, divorce’, largely regarded as a lousy parent, and Paris Hilton who is famous because she is famous and for no reason related to any skill or accomplishment associated with her.
Barrack’s response? “He doesn’t seem to have anything positive to say about himself, does he? You should ask him what he stands for instead of what he’s against!” This call and response illustrates my point today. It’s multi-functional as an example of “The Politics of Destruction” and how Barrack Obama acts in response to it.
John McCain made a pretty offensive attack against Barrack as a person. This is not an ad about Obama’s stand on any issue; it’s about the nature of who he is. The McCain campaign is trying to brand Barrack Obama as a man without substance. The idea is to make it look to the voting public like John McCain is a good choice for a leader BECAUSE Barrack Obama is a scatter brained idiot and not because McCain is, in some way, better!
This is what Barrack Obama is talking about when he advocates against the Politics of Destruction, but not only does he advocate against it, he displays what he MEANS by it, with his response. He points out that John McCain is focused on him as a person rather than talking about what he stands for or why he would somehow be a better choice for President than Barrack.
There were other instances of the same kind of politics during the primary elections. You’ll recall how Hillary Clinton made fun of Barracks ability to appeal to the better angels of the voting public and called him delusional. His response to that was not to attack Hillary Clinton but rather to ask his supporters if they thought she was right. He asked them if they felt like hippies running with blissful abandon through a sun-drenched field of daisies.
For too long, we voters have been subjected to The Politics of Destruction in electoral politics. Selecting the “Lesser of Two Evils” is how the electorate has voted for as long as I’ve been alive. We vote for the candidate who frightens our imaginings the least because our candidates operate their campaigns to demonize opponents rather than being a stand for something better. I see Barrack Obama continuing to BE a stand for a change in that equation.
It’s clear that John McCain’s message isn’t resonating with the voting public very well. He is currently struggling to find some method that will work to DEFEAT Barrack Obama. Barrack Obama, in stark contrast, is concentrating on WINNING this election rather than DEFEATING John McCain. It’s a subtle distinction, but it’s one that makes ALL the difference for me!
The reason is because I believe a candidate should win an election because his or her IDEAS are better!
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July 30, 2008 – by Gregory Franklyn