02 November 2008

Jonathan Curley on the Intangibles

Jonathan Curley, a banker from North Carolina, voted for George H.W. Bush twice and George W. Bush once. He’s a middle aged white man, and his son is in the military. Curley says that if Obama wins, “I'm definitely going to get a bigger tax bill” (CSM).
At his wife’s suggestion, Curley spent a Saturday canvassing for Senator Obama. He’s written about his experiences at the Christian Science Monitor. His conclusion? Of his experiment in political participation, he says “I don't know what [canvassing is] going to do for the Obama campaign, but it's doing a lot for me.” He writes,

I learned in just those three hours [of canvassing] that this election is not about what we think of as the "big things."
It's not about taxes. I'm pretty sure mine are going to go up no matter who is elected.
It's not about foreign policy. I think we'll figure out a way to get out of Iraq and Afghanistan no matter which party controls the White House, mostly because the people who live there don't want us there anymore.
I don't see either of the candidates as having all the answers.
I've learned that this election is about the heart of America. It's about the young people who are losing hope and the old people who have been forgotten. It's about those who have worked all their lives and never fully realized the promise of America, but see that promise for their grandchildren in Barack Obama. The poor see a chance, when they often have few. I saw hope in the eyes and faces in those doorways. (CSM)
Hope, opportunity, and promise: intangibles that could be the true value of this election. Do take a look at Mr. Curley's story--it's a welcome piece in these last few days of bitter politicking (e.g., a woman refusing Halloween candy to children whose parents support Obama).

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