Sunday, August 24, 2008


I found out about the Biden as VP announcement last night while up late, read more about it this morning, thought about it at work, and read some more about it when I got home (late). And I have to say, the more I think about it, the more I like it, and I think it's because I think a lot of the criticisms of it are wrong.

The main criticism seems to be that they think Biden is, as Kos put it, fills a gap: that Obama is covering a percieved criticism with the pick, either a lack of foreign policy experiance or an inability to attack his political opponents. Maybe Obama was thinking of these things, but I doubt it. I don't think the guy who won the Iraq Debate—when the leader of Iraq endorses your plan, you win—is looking for someone to bolster his foreign policy cred. I think that Obama actually went with Biden because he actually reinforces a lot of Obama's appeal.

The reasons are have supported Barack Obama are these: 1)He is the only politician who has articulated a version of America that I can belong to, the accepts and welcomes me. 2) He comes across not as a politician, as some weird amorphous creature that shifts form with every new round of polling data, but as an actual person for whom being a politician is simply his job. 3) While his political views are not as far to the left as I would like, they are far enough that I don't feel he is really on the other side, like I do with anyone in the DLC, and they represent a clear and present shift from present centrist opinion. 4) He has the mad political skills to actually get those policies enacted. Getting Obama's politicies in place is better than failing to get Kucinich's or Nader's in place. The perfect may be kept in mind, but always work for the possible.

With Biden, I feel he works to strengthen Obama's vision of America. Biden is a working-class kid who made it to the senate at an impossibly young age, and dealt with reams of personal tradgedy, yet worked through it all. He's actually kind of inspiring. And like Obama, he comes across as human, not a politician. Biden has been a senator so long the man is just completely comfortable in his skin. The guy you see on stage is not an act, and he doesn't try to put on airs or change his rhetoric to acomodate anyone. He is who he is, and that's good. If I am going to be putting the Button in someone's hands, or putting them heartbeat way from the Button, I would like to know them as a person a bit, becasue robots are scary. I don't have to like them, in fact it's very possible Biden is a huge asshole, I just have to know they aren't lying to me. Coming across as real, as an actual person, means coming across as someone who isn't lying, as someone who is honest. Biden seems to be honest. After Clinton and Bush, and Gore, who, god love him, couldn't keep those goddamn advisors off him enough, and only really flowered once he stopped giving a fuck and it was too late to get elected, I need that.

Concerning Biden on the issues, he seems to be pretty good. A couple of big disagreeances, but for the most part he seems to be a solid Good Democrat, and while I would of course like a Good Social Democrat, I am not feeling to greedy right now. The fourth point, eh, obviously Biden isn't the political phenom Obama is, but the guy is obviously a policy heavyweight, in a way Hilary Clinton can only wish she was, so even if he isn't a political phenom, the guy can run the show, which is really the VP's main qualification.