Saturday, August 23, 2008

Barack Obama Speaks my Language

I'm up early and the toddler and man are still asleep so I walked down the driveway, retrieved the LA times (what's left of it with all the layoffs!) and read that Barack selected Joe Biden as his running mate. I didn't do a "yippee" or a "darn" as I don't know enough about the man, but I was excited to read it first.

When I say "read it first", you are probably feeling sorry for me, as the whole world probably knows by now. What I mean is that no one else TOLD me. I know this is old news to most, but I am in this sphere where we don't have TV, I don't check my emails at work (I did sign up to be the "first to know" on Barack's mailing list), and I only go online to read the news when I get home--and last night we had double social events, which means I went straight to bed when we finally arrived home.So this morning, I was the one who "discovered" the news. But then the news started spinning.

As I concluded the front page article, I flipped to page A14, where a parallel article on Obama entitled "Political stagecraft is a high-wire act" spinned in a different direction: speculation and criticism of Obama's whole approach as "theatrical" and risky. The reporter criticized Obama's approach of keeping his 2nd a mystery. I personally loved it.

Obama's campaign strategy takes ordinary, predictable political events that are traditionally dreary, business as usual steps in a campaign and transforms them, infuses them with excitement and peaks the interest of the public. Okay, that may be theatrical, but I've got to say, it works! Obama is speaking my language when he pulls me in, tactics or not! Why the hell should it all be mundane? We're sick of that! If anything, he is staying true to his promise of "change" on every level, including how he strategizes in his campaign.

I think Obama is pulling upon his years as a law professor, where he actively engaged his students so their minds were receptive and open. I never took a class from him, but if he was a talented professor, then he must have engaged his students to teach a topic as old as our country--constitutional law. In his book "The Audacity of Hope" he does speak about making the class relevant and stimulating. Thank GOD he's using these tactics in his campaign.

WE ALL KNOW Obama is campaigning for president. We ALL KNOW that means strategizing to engage people, get their attention, get them involved. If he is a master of media attention grabbing, then that's a GOOD sign, as long as it's being used in a way that is good for the country--and so far, he is a stunning success.

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