I saw Obama! Like most of the cool shit that happens in my life (Rob you might have a point) this was totally random. A friend calls me up on Saturday night to tell me that his GF is going to see Obama with a friend. I said thats awesome, I'm totally jealous and if theres and more seats or whatever let me know I'd love to go too. About an hour later his GF calls and says shes not sure if she going to go but if she doesn't then I can take her spot. Cool. After thinking about her reasons I quickly deduce that I'll be going to see Obama the next day, and my friend might be going to if his GF doesn't. So I show up at there place and he says, "well I was gunna go but my dad called and so were going to have lunch with the 'rents then ride their go-carts with the kids." See the next president or ride go-carts that your parents own and can do any weekend. Not much of a choice for either of us, he's not political, I am.
So my friend's GF's (who admittedly is a friend too now) friend shows up, and it all, "hey nice to meet you, none of them are going, but I'm still in, cool if I ride with you for a few hours?" It was so perfectly fitting, she was chill but a total hippie, so two young white liberals riding in a Prius to go see an Obama rally. So although we're essentially total strangers it was pretty easy to hold a conversation because obviously we're both into politics. Oh and Rob don't get any idea's she isn't single. I asked that of my friends before she even showed up. There was lots of bullshitting about the chances each person has, how McCain will do better and better until the Dem convention at which point either one of them is going to crush that senile old man. Come on the fucker has repeatedly said he doesn't understand the economy, thats bad, his only real strong points are based on his unending support of a failure of a war, and yet the bastard doesn't know Sunni from a Shiite as he has also made clear on several occasions, three I believe. We had no love for Hillary but we obviously admit that shes much better than McCain and would vote for her if she took the convention. Oh and all this was going on two days before the PA primary so we headed to Scranton.
- Off to the show -
So we show up, theres a plaza and a small sports complex off to the side. We were pretty early so we ended up waiting in a line to get in for a while, turned out to be silly from the fact that it ended up never getting filled, but it was worth it because unlike the people who were 40 yards back we stood with just three rows of people between us and the fence, then the secret service fellas then the stage, oh and did I mention we were directly in front of the podium? Unfortunately there were no seats so this meant a few more hours of standing so we didn't lose our spots. Now I recall the other thing I was going to put in the post about inconsiderate people. So everyone is standing around waiting. a few people get tired of this and decide to sit. No big deal, at first. Pretty soon there are 30 people sitting on the floor, I'm not sure if you've noticed but a seated person takes up a whole lot more floor space than a standing one. Plus if you, like me, are on the edge of the seated people then when some one tries to move through the crowd and you try to make room, theres no where to go. I nearly fell on people a few times, I had to maneuver my feet around to avoid crushing fingers. Now none of this would have bothered me had it been the gray haired people who simply cannot stand for three or four hours straight, but no the senior citizens would only put a burden on others if it was absolutely necessary. No most of the people on the floor were high school or college age. Bastards. Then after much waiting a guy come up to the podium, a huge cheer erupts from the crowd, he sticks a note on the podium and walks away. Damn. Then eventually some local politicians give some talks, Caroline Kennedy give a little talk, there was some other PA big shot, Casey maybe? People were shouting for him to be Vice. Then finally the man of the hour came out, but first a little background on my bias, cause I need to be long winded about everything, hence the "rambling" in the title.
The only other events like this I've been to were either for Eric Massa who as a former military commander is really good at firing up a crowd, he's not the least bit afraid of a Dean moment, he'll yell and holler but at that level you can do that (house of reps). Hillary's event was at the airport so she wouldn't have to spend any more time in this hell hole than absolutely necessary, it was also during her senate run which was essentially uncontested. She was good but again she could say whatever she wanted there was no risk of losing so might as well say what your constituents want to hear. To be fair I was impressed with her, partially because I went in with low expectations.
-Obama- (this was almost two weeks ago, I'll be lacking in details)
He walked out onto the stage and the crowd went nuts. Screaming and hollering, I love you, whistling and everything else you can imagine. His speech was good, it was obviously one he'd given many times along the way, but you can't really expect any of them to write a new speech for every town they go to. He talked about the opponents and the crowd got a little nasty, Obama said now wait a minute they are both great Americans, they both have done many things to help this country. He was very courteous to them, then he laid into their policies. Thats what a politician should do, don't attack the people attack what they want to do with the country. Unfortunately neither of the others are going to play by those rules and I'm not sure how much longer he can, then again if goes offensive now it might hurt him. I personally hate the smear tactics. He talked about the economy, mentioned specific local businesses that have closed, or had lay offs. So thats what the first guy stuck on the podium. At one point when the quickly swung from booing the opponents to shouting praise for him he said, "Man, you guys are feisty" I found that amusing. He talked about how he refuses to take PAC and corporate money, although he does take union money which is just as bad in my mind, but not many others. This is probably the most important part of his campaign and it doesn't get nearly enough attention. This is the "Change We Can Believe In" although in truth I don't think he can do it, but to have a president who sincerely wants to make lobbyists into a thing for the history books would be amazing. It's going to take more than a president to make this happen, he'll have Kucinich on his side in the Senate but probably not a whole lot of others, but who knows, it would be a huge help towards ending the legal corruption that is our legislative branch.
I can't recall exactly what all was said, but when we left all I could think was, "I just saw our next president... and I like him." Then on the way home we talked about how unless something major happens he's going to win the Dem nomination, then he's going to trounce McCain, the only other questions are who will be his Vice, and how long till someone shoots him?