Win, Lose or Draw!

The first debate is now behind us, along with all of the drama surrounding Senator McCain….Will he or won’t he appear? Of course, he appeared!

As Joe Biden said in post-debate interviews, he seems to be lurching back and forth between policies. His answers about the economic crisis we are facing seemed incongruous to me. In the past, he has always been in favor of leaving big business, Wall Street and our financial institutions alone. Now, he seems to be in favor of supervising them with even stricter restrictions than most of his Republican counterparts recommend. I’m not sure of what he thinks. Is he truly trying to see that our money (we the taxpayer’s) is well spent, or is he pandering to popular opinion? His judgment on this issue seemed to be inconsistent and the result of careless thinking. It seems as though the Republican Party has developed a split personality in their efforts to distance themselves from President Bush.

On the other hand, Barack Obama’s favoring stricter regulatory controls was right in line with what he, as a Democrat, has always proposed. He doesn’t change his policies according to popular opinion. His opinion on the war in Iraq hasn’t changed either. It is the wrong war in the wrong place and it has, and continues to cost us more money and lives each month. Our soldiers are wonderfully brave and they have done their duty but John McCain seems obsessed with “winning this war”. I’m not sure what we will have won there if we stay…… certainly not the war on terror, which should be waged in Afghanistan, according to Barack Obama and most foreign policy experts. Not to mention what the pursuit of victory in Iraq will cost our nation – its standing in the eyes of our foreign allies, the preparedness of our military to face other critical events, the bankruptcy of our financial systems, AND THE LIVES OF MORE OF OUR SOLDIERS! I’m not going to rehash what each candidate said in answer to each question. You all heard the same things I did, but possibly from different perspectives.

Last night, I realized more than ever that this election is between old and new philosophies. Senator McCain represents the old way of governing. He is a military man and he still believes in the power of bullets and bombs. He does not believe in high-level negotiations with leaders who disagree with our principals. I believe that peaceful resolution is becoming more and more possible and that amazing changes can occur without war. Look at what Gandhi accomplished in India, and Martin Luther King Jr. in our own country? I still remember when the Berlin Wall came down during President Reagan’s administration. It came down because of diplomacy and a willingness to have meaningful dialogues with Mikhail Gorbachev, even though he represented a country whose philosophies were diametrically opposed to ours.

We are now living in a new and different age that requires new ways of governing. John McCain (and his pen) represent the old ways of thinking about our problems and this approach no longer works. Senator Obama represents a new, fresh approach to our problems which gives me hope for a better world. Our young people recognize their need for this kind of inspiration and guidance and they are determined to follow it.

Depending on your outlook, the first debate was a win, lose or draw. You decide and let me know how you feel. And get ready for the next one. It should be great entertainment!

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