Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Obama Tsunami will sweep the country tonite!

Its finally here. In just a few hours we will begin to get results for one of the most important election in the history of the US. And though its been anticipated for some days now, i think today we will finally see the full force of the "Obama Tsunami" sweeping over the usually blue and many of the red states. As he has so famously said, "There is no blue america and a red america. There is the United States of America." The hour has come when this could finally be realized.

I predict that obama will win the presidency by a margin of at-least 75 votes. And i am not saying so because every poll shows that Obama has a lead and is a clear favorite to win. I am saying this because i have felt this since that cold winter day in January 2008 when i was campaigning for obama on the weekend of the New Hampshire primary. At that time hearing him and witnessing first hand the grassroots organization of the campaign, i just felt it in my gut that this was just the tip of the iceberg. And since then the gains have been bigger, the support more overwhelming and tonite will be the culmination of the wave that has been sweeping america and driving an epidemic of hope and change.

Obama has brought the idealism, the romanticism and the aspiration back to politics. Nobody is perfect and we wont ever live in a perfect world but at-least we are making a course correction and getting the country to aspire and work towards a better America. There are many reasons why i support obama (i need to finish that blog ) and have campaigned for him even though i cant vote. But in the end, the reasons, why he will win this election are more basic and fundamental. He will win because he has shown that there can still be a certain dignity, decency, rightousness, fairness and inclusiveness in politics.

Yes there are arguments against his relative lack of experience and many other such points but in the end what the majority of America is voting for is the core principles that define a leader - character, judgement and integrity. We have all seen in the past 8 years how the lack of such traits (and the abundance of arrogance) in our leaders has resulted in such a colossal mess.

And yes, just like winning the primary was just a tip in the iceberg, going forward winning the presidency will just be the tip in the iceberg of what is to come. I feel we are witnessing the start of possiblly the best administration to govern this country in a very, very long time. Yes, i am hopeful, just as i was on that cold day in New Hampshire (a primary that obama lost) and i know 4 years from now that hope will be reality.

Yes we can. And yes we have done so. Made America a better country today. And proved that we all can see the shining star in the darkness of the night.

Time to celebrate!

Monday, November 3, 2008

I Cant Vote. But i support Barack Obama

Yes, i cant vote since i am not a US citizen. So why should i care about the election? I do because of Barack Obama. Because of hope and because i could see change can come, even in politics.

There are many reasons why i support Barack Obama. And i didnt make my decision last week, or last month or after he beat hillary to be the Democratic Nominee. I made that decision just before the New Hampshire primary when overwhelmed by his victory speech iowa, i decide on the spur of the moment to join a band of supporters who were driving up to manchester, NH to do door-to-door campaigning in nassau county. But i think it goes back even further when i chanced upon his book "dreams of my father" in 2003-04.
And ever since i heard him speak in manchester, NH, i have been meaning to blog my reasons to support him. I guess with just hours left before be becomes president, its time to at-least pen some thoughts down.

I have had many discussions and debates with people who were initially reluctant to support obama. They thought we was just a "good orator". Some said, "he is too naive and is promisng the world" and many said, "he is too inexperienced - he has not been whetted yet." Yes valid points but then you dont necessarily decide such matters by looking at one trait in isolation or comparing a person with another just on the basis on one characteristic. I think the decision, as the INS always does in immigration matters is based on a Case-by-Case basis and on a point-by-point basis.

1. Ideas and Words
Lets begin with words and ideas. I have heard many folks say "he is just words." Words are nothing. Yes, words in themselves can mean nothing. But words can also mean a lot, specially when spoken with earnestness and honest intention tempered with real-life feelings. Barack Obama just didnt use words to stir up a campaign. No he communicated feelings, thoughts and ideas that inspired, that catalyzed, motivated and above all resonated with my (an i believe millions more) sense of governanace, of political leadership. He was saying "what ought to be and now what we have or are made to have". It is words who give some forms to abstract ideas about liberty and justice. It was the famous words "lets put a man on the moon" that galvanized a nation to spur towards that goal. Ideas are powerful catalysts for change. Words express them and help communicate them and barack has done so effectively.

Yes, just words and ideas are not enough (as an entreprenuer i know that well). Execution is important. So lets look at execution

2. Execution and Experience

"He doesnt have enough experience", a good many friends have countered with that argument. Yes, he doesnt have even a full terms experience in the senate. But before we ask how much experience is necessary for someone to qualify as a president (constitutionally there is no such requirement), it is important to go back anad ask "experience of what?" Is that necessary that one has to demonstrate experience in one particular job to "really become experienced". Countless examples exist that prove that there is no such absolute requirement.

3. Character