OK

In the last month it seems many are quick to judge, to anger and to condemn PE Obama.
It began as soon as rumor came out that he was considering Hillary Clinton for Secretary of State and it's snowballed from there.  Now we are seeing the uprising over Rick Warren and his delivering a prayer.

To me, alot of it seems as if people were just waiting for a reason to jump and get angry or abandon their support without trying to understand the why and how come.

The sheer anger since the election seems like a fuse waiting to light.  Something pent up and ready to go off.
And the anger is stronger then it should be.  Almost an over reaction to things.

It seems many have been waiting for confirmation that Obama is nothing more then Bill Clinton with darker skin. And it seems there is some fear behind this.

When Clinton was president, his DLC and third way politics gave a bad name to moderate thinking.  It became almost a four letter word to be moderate in some ways.  And he deeply disappointed not just the left but, many average democrats as well by caving to the rightwing.

I saw  Bill Clinton was a weak man in many ways who craved applause and acceptance and people's love.  This included being loved by his enemies and the republicans.  He just needed approval from those who disliked him so much he forgot those who did like him.

Barack Obama is not Bill Clinton.  He doesn't crave approval.  He does crave an end to partisanship as he sees it as the biggest thing that is crippling our government.  And while he reaches across the aisle, don't mistake this for caving or being weak.  He has a very strong spine.  

If anyone reads about Obama's years as the president of the Harvard Law Review, Obama's appointments and trying to be inclusive and even picking Rick Warren to deliver a prayer is so classic.  Back then the Law Review was the epicenter of a powder keg of conservatives vs. progressives.  He was known as a clear progressive.  But, he made friends with conservatives who he strongly disagreed with in ideology.  Many of his liberal friends and fellow students found it baffling and strange.

The one thing his fellow students remember about Obama when he became President of the Law Review was that he appointed more conservatives then liberals to the openings and this enraged the progressives who saw it as a betrayal.    But, it forced the two sides to work together and produce a very balanced Review.  And it was agreed that he ended up doing some very good work and producing an above average Law Review.

Obama was also known to cut through the bs and rhetoric and see the bottom line.  See the important things rather then being distracted by ideology and 'food fights'.   And he was known to be able to bridge the two sides divides and get them to discuss and be civilized to each other and to consider the other side's issues and beliefs.  Also get over the distractions of the bs and make considered thinking.  Not just to react and reject.  He held the powder keg together.

Now we are looking at him doing the same thing and with people acting like those Law students when Obama was first appointed.  He's been here before.  

Obama is not going to become another Bill Clinton.  Nor is he going to become a Dennis Kucinich.  Obama is going to be different from what we've seen before.  Afterall, we have been down this road with Obama for two years and were so sure he either blew it, was not doing as we thought was the best way, not reacting the way we wanted and yet, he seemed to know better then us and defy conventional wisdom.

It's agreed he totally rewrote the book on campaigns, campaigning and even politics already.  With the uproar and conventional reaction to his inviting Rick Warren and his own reasons for it, he seems to know something and be trying to teach us something we don't readily see yet.  Partly due to our being unable to take a step back and consider this and instead just react with indignity.

I wonder how those reacting think we are going to bridge a divide that is hurting our country if we don't try to talk to one another.  What is accomplished with anger, rejection to anyone not in line with our thinking?  Turning our back on Obama and condemning him for trying to open dialogue with each other?  Does screaming, bullying or demanding our way or nothing accomplish anything?

Or do you sway people and help them consider their thinking and change their minds by talking, being open and civilized, respecting them as human beings and do diplomacy in our own turf?  Aren't people more likely to be more receptive when you approach them with your hand out to shake theirs over it being used to slap their face?

We can learn a thing or two from Obama's Harvard days and foresee what his presidency will be like and how he governs.  This presidency is going to be a very interesting ride.

Originally posted to renior on Fri Dec 19, 2008 at 08:41 AM PST.

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