Monday, 20 October 2008

Voting and Colin Powell

I voted "early" today. I was reluctant to do this for I love the thrill of Election Day (and I do not
trust the State of Florida to keep my vote intact).



But I voted because I have volunteered to drive electors to the Polls on Election Day itself. This is my part in getting out the vote - I hope for Obama/Biden.



I voted at the Library in Newtown, SRQ.

Newtown is the community created by the Burghers of Sarasota for black people when those Burghers decided that the black area (the Rosemary District) was ripe for white expansion.

I voted there because I am pissed off with my "liberal" white friends and neigbours who are scared even to drive through Newtown.

Of course I voted the for Senators Obama and Biden. It's the right thing to do!

And I was heartened by General Colin Powell's endorsement of Barack Obama.

What for me is important is not simply what he said, but why he said it. (You can read this below).


I believe that General Powell stated many things which are important for the health of our Nation.

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Former Secretary of State Colin Powell announced Sunday that he will break with his party and vote for Sen. Barack Obama. "He has both style and substance. I think he is a transformational figure," Powell said on NBC's Meet the Press.


"I come to the conclusion that because of his ability to inspire, because of the inclusive nature of his campaign, because he is reaching out all across America, because of who he is and his rhetorical abilities -- and you have to take that into account -- as well as his substance -- he has both style and substance," Powell said. "He has met the standard of being a successful president, being an exceptional president."


Powell noted that McCain has been a good friend for 25 years, but expressed disappointment in the "over the top" negative tone of the GOP campaign, as well as in McCain's choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as the vice presidential nominee.


"Now that we have had a chance to watch her for some seven weeks, I don't believe she's ready to be president of the United States, which is the job of the vice president," Powell said. "And so that raised some question in my mind as to the judgment that Senator McCain made."


He also harshly criticized some of McCain's campaign tactics, such as the robocall campaign linking Obama to former 1960s radical Bill Ayers.


"Mr. McCain says that he's a washed up terrorist, but then why do we keep talking about him? And why do we have the robocalls going on around the country trying to suggest that because of this very, very limited relationship that Senator Obama has had with Mr. Ayers, somehow Mr. Obama is tainted. What they're trying to connect him to is some kind of terrorist feelings. And I think that's inappropriate.

Now, I understand what politics is all about, I know how you can go after one another and that's good. But I think this goes too far, and I think it has made the McCain campaign look a little narrow. It's not what the American people are looking for."


Powell also spoke passionately against the insinuations by some Republicans that Obama is a Muslim.


"Well, the correct answer is, he is not a Muslim, he's a Christian. He's always been a Christian," he said. "But the really right answer is, what if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country? The answer's no, that's not America. Is there something wrong with some seven-year-old Muslim-American kid believing that he or she could be president?

Yet, I have heard senior members of my own party drop the suggestion, 'He's a Muslim and he might be associated terrorists.' This is not the way we should be doing it in America."


Powell said he does not plan to campaign for Obama.


Following the interview, Powell told reporters outside NBC's Washington studio that McCain "is essentially going to execute the Republican agenda, the orthodoxy of the Republican agenda with a new face and a maverick approach to it, and he'd be quite good at it, but I think we need more than that. I think we need a generational change. I think Senator Obama has captured the feelings of the young people of America and is reaching out in a more diverse, inclusive way across our society."


Powell charged that the Republican focus on William Ayers and Obama's religious affiliations were damaging America's image abroad.


"Those kinds of images going out on al Jazeera are killing us around the world," he said. "And we have got to say to the world, it doesn't make any difference who you are or what you are, if you're an American you're an American.

And this business of, for example a congresswoman from Minnesota going around saying let's examine all congressmen to see who is pro America or not pro America, we have got to stop this kind of non-sense and pull ourselves together and remember that our great strength is in our unity and diversity. That really was driving me."


Powell continued, defending Obama against McCain's latest charge that the Democrat's policies are quasi-socialist:


We can't judge our people and hold our elections on that kind of basis. Yes, that kind of negativity troubled me. And the constant shifting of the argument, I was troubled a couple of weeks ago when in the middle of the crisis the campaign said 'we're going to go negative,' and they announced it. 'We're going to go negative and attack his character through Bill Ayers.'

Now I guess the message this week is we're going to call him a socialist. Mr. Obama is now a socialist, because he dares to suggest that maybe we ought to look at the tax structure that we have. Taxes are always a redistribution of money. Most of the taxes that are redistributed go back to those who pay them, in roads and airports and hospitals and schools. And taxes are necessary for the common good. And there's nothing wrong with examining what our tax structure is or who should be paying more or who should be paying less, and for us to say that makes you a socialist is an unfortunate characterization that I don't think is accurate.


Asked whether he still considers himself a Republican, Powell responded, "Yes."
Robert Gibbs told reporters that Obama called Powell to thank him for his endorsement and express how honored he was to have it.













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