Monday, August 25, 2008

"Obama's VP Highlights Weaknesses, Not Strengths" - Duh

I saw a headline in Yahoo! News about how Obama's choice of Biden for his running mate only emphasizes Obama's own weaknesses, and does nothing to highlight his strengths.

I thought that was a pretty lame idea for an article.

Obama is the candidate for change because he's new. And being new, he has a much shorter list of experience than the other guys. That means that we don't know what his strengths are.

If Obama were an economic expert, then Biden would emphasize Obama's financial prowess by providing contrast with his own military background.

In fact, anything that Obama has a strength in, that Biden doesn't, would automatically be highlighted by choosing Biden. People would say, "Obama chose Biden because Biden's good at X, and we all know Obama's good at Y."

It makes perfect sense to balance out the team's strengths. The only reason taking that action would ever highlight weakness is when the team captain doesn't have any strengths to be contrasted with.

So then, any new expert teammate just highlights how Obama isn't an expert in that teammate's specialty.

The point is, Obama could have chosen pretty much anyone, and that headline about "highlighting his weaknesses" would still have applied.

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Monday, August 11, 2008

Obama in Afghanistan: The Real Story

I got this email forwarded from the wife of a soldier:

From: Shapiro, Bonnie A Civ USAF ACC 23 WG/SEA
Date: 7/25/2008 7:45:35 AM
Subject: FW: Obama in Afghanistan

Hello everyone,
As you know I am not a very political person. I just wanted to pass
along that Senator Obama came to Bagram Afghanistan for about an hour on
his visit to 'The War Zone'. I wanted to share with you what happened.
He got off the plane and got into a bullet proof vehicle, got to the
area to meet with the Major General (2 Star) who is the commander here
at Bagram.

As the Soldiers where lined up to shake his hand he blew them off and
didn't say a word as he went into the conference room to meet the
General. As he finished, the vehicles took him to the ClamShell (pretty
much a big top tent that military personnel can play basketball or work
out in with weights) so he could take his publicity pictures playing
basketball. He again shunned the opportunity to talk to Soldiers to
thank them for their service.

So really he was just here to make a showing for the American's back
home that he is their candidate for President. I think that if you are
going to make an effort to come all the way over here you would thank
those that are providing the freedom that they are providing for you.
I swear we got more thanks from the NBA Basketball Players or the
Dallas Cowboy Cheer leaders than from one of the Senators, who wants to
be the President of the United States. I just don't understand how
anyone would want him to be our Commander-and-Chief. It was almost that
he was scared to be around those that provide the freedom for him and
our great country.

If this is blunt and to the point I am sorry but I wanted you all to
know what kind of caliber of person he really is. What you see in the news
is all fake.

In service,
CPT Jeffrey S. Porter
Battle Captain
TF Wasatch
American Soldier

That message was provocative. But it's so easy to check online to see if it's accurate.

After quick search I found that CPT Jeffrey S. Porter later retracted his email, saying, "After checking my sources some of the information that was put out in my e-mail was wrong." features accounts of other service men and women who met Obama and can attest to his friendly behavior. There are pictures backing them up.

There is also a "Department of Defense video [which] shows Senator Obama meeting, talking, and eating breakfast with U.S. troops in Afghanistan":

Wikipedia and the Army Times say pretty much the same.

According to Snopes, "Tales of prominent Democrats snubbing or acting rudely towards military and security personnel ... have been a common form of political rumor over the last few decades."

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