Posts Tagged 'politics'

You Just Got Barackroll’d!

If you’re not familiar with the Rickroll phenomenon, then you must have been hiding under a rock, or have a really slow dialup connection or something. What started out as a prank on message boards hit the big time on April Fool’s Day last year, when all of the links on Youtube’s front page linked back to the video linked above. Well, some enterprising fellow took bits of Barack Obama’s media time (because there’s oh-so-much of it to use) and put this little gem together for us all to enjoy.

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It’s Really Heating Up Now!

Just Watch!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

I Think You and I Are Destined to Do This Forever

I love presidential elections.  I think it’s fascinating to see four people go under the national microscope; it’s interesting to see what they’re willing to say in the pursuit of the nation’s highest elected office.  The past two weeks have given us both party conventions.  With both the Democratic and Republican conventions now on the books, the polls are tightening up, the messages from each camp are being refined, and the rhetoric ratchets ever skyward.  As we hurtle towards yet another form of “Judgment Day,” the message coming out of all forms of media, regardless of your political leaning and how you get your news, is that we are a nation divided.  The claim is that we are a nation divided by our political ideologies, and in this fight, there is no middle ground.

I read a few political websites on a daily basis, one of which aggregates news from around the online print media and blogosphere.  The site has no agenda on its own (that I can tell, anyway), but brings news from both perspectives, often placing stories of sharp contrast right next to each other.  For example, a recent day’s aggregation of headlines placed the story “Republicans Run from Reality” immediately above “McCain Offers Reality vs. Obama’s Empty Promises.”  This is not an uncommon sight.  If you watch any 24-hour cable news network that brings on people of differing viewpoints, the “debate” eventually devolves into a contest to see which one can smile larger while shaking their head and belittling the other side’s viewpoint.  Read two articles and you will find completely polar opposites regarding the same event or situation being covered.  Either Obama hit a home run, or his speech was disappointing.  Either you loved Palin’s speech, or you hated it.

While I generally think that these distinctions are probably true, the gaping chasm between us might not be as large or as wide as it’s made out to be.  Yesterday I had lunch with some classmates of mine during a study break.  While we ate, I got into a discussion/debate over politics with one of my classmates.  He and I have probably polar opposite viewpoints on nearly every issue.  Yet, as we ate, we had a logical, reasoned, and dare I say it, cordial debate about our differences.  We talked about everything from specific stances on issues to how our faith influences those stances, and how we try to live those stances out daily.  Neither of us left having changed the other person’s mind; but I think in both situations, we were challenged by the other to think about things in a slightly different way.

On the other hand, an experience like that is not generally the norm.  Most of the time political conversations seem to be laced with jokes poking fun at the other person’s beliefs, or outright jokes that seem to ward off any meaningful discussion on the topic.  Other evidence seems to point further to the fact that we are that divided.  Just look at the electoral map.  There are the consistent, reliable states that don’t even warrant a visit from either candidate, because we know how they’re going to vote.  Blue States on the outer edges, Red States through the middle.  A few “gray” states that are undecided.

I don’t know which it is for sure.  Part of me says that we can still have logical, reasoned discourse on the issues facing our nation and our own personal beliefs without vitriol or venom-spewing.  The other part of me says that things will only become more divided, with the gap between the “two Americas” growing ever larger.  I honestly don’t know what the truth is.  Either way, I’m pretty sure the Joker was right.

Poor Soul…

Last night was John McCain’s acceptance speech. After what was a somewhat rocky start due to some protesters and an ADD crowd, I thought McCain settled in and did very nicely. It wasn’t the stuff of legend – McCain is not gifted with incredible oratory skills or anything, but it was solid, and he effectively communicated his message. The thing that sticks out to me about the man in general is the stiffness with which he moves – a product of his years in the Hanoi Hilton as a POW. The stories he told about that were moving. Though it may not make him qualified to be President, his steadfastness during his imprisonment shows his courage, and his service afterward (when so many vets went the other way) shows his extraordinary commitment to this country. Hopefully we can all agree on that.

However, the title of this post doesn’t refer to McCain, but to one of the delegates at the convention last night. At one point, they cut to the crowd cheering, and a guy holding up a sign. Here it is:

Fail!

Fail!



Poor guy. He’s going to hear about this one for quite a long time to come, I’m afraid.