Saturday, September 06, 2008

Change

The two presidential candidate keep trying to claim that they'll be agents of change in Washington. They might both be right.

Obama promises change from the policies of Bush. His whole campaign - from the primaries on through to today - has been a message of change. But what does Obama mean by "change"? I don't think he means he'll change the way business is done in Washington. I don't think he means bipartisan efforts. I don't think he means anything revolutionary at all. All Obama means is that he'll advance the Democratic platform. Which would certainly be a change in that Bush has advanced a Republican platform. But it's pretty much the most obvious pledge of change anyone could make.

McCain promises change in a more revolutionary sense. He's campaigning on his "maverick" reputation, on his ability to work across party lines, on his non-traditional approach to getting things done. McCain has always been more bipartisan than most politicians, and so maybe he'll make efforts in this direction. But he won't be changing policies. He'll still be advancing the same platform that Bush has been working towards. And of course, bipartisanship only works if you've got people willing to work with you from the other party. Who knows whether that'll ever happen.

Anyway, the point here is that both candidates promise only a type of change, and not some sort of universal change. And we certainly shouldn't be confident that either candidate will actually achieve any meaningful change. And I guess this just really ticks me off. Because both sides are being so disingenuous when they claim the label. Obama is acting like he'll be a revolutionary candidate, when he'll be nothing more than politics as usual. And McCain is acting like he'll be able to bring everyone together in a big happy family, but he'll only be working to promote the same stuff we've seen over the past 8 years - certainly nothing new there.
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In the comments of the last post I was accused of being a Republican. I'm not. There are few things which make me so angry. I don't embrace the Democrats. I don't embrace the Republicans. Both sides have big problems, neither party presents a cohesive platform that I can support universally, and both candidates are campaigning on disingenuous mottoes of change. (I will say that I think the Democrats offer the most potential for a platform that I embrace, and the fact that they're close but unwilling to move the rest of the way is so very frustrating. The Republicans have further to go before I could support their platform. I've supported candidates from both parties, but never either party's platform.)

Anyway, hopefully this post helps reveal a little more of why I'm so troubled by both parties.

Sometimes it's hard to know where I stand,
It's hard to know where I am

1 comment:

Jeff said...

You... you... Republocrateenatarian!

N.E. Way, I just thought I'd use this opportunity to point out that going into the Presidency expecting to "change Washington" is asking for a first two years of falling flat on your face. Ask Clinton. Or Bush II pre-9/11. Or Carter.