Saturday, January 5, 2008

The Natural

With Obama's Iowa win and rising poll numbers, Barack has done what I had always thought was impossible. No, not win as a black man in a white state, nor defeat Hillary for the female vote. No, the miracle of the Barack Obama campaign is that they have created the image of a political candidate who isn't a complete douche bag.

Barack Obama may actually be . . . (pause for effect) . . . cool.

Politicians always seem to reek of ambition. They have a reputation as being self serving and arrogant. On the ladder of public loathing, politicians are barely a step up from America's least favorite professionals, lawyers. Listening to a political candidate speak is about as pleasant as listening to a David Hasselhoff Christmas album on repeat. John Kerry sounded like a reanimated corpse, and Al Gore, before he found religion (mother earth), was stiffer and more robotic than Optimus Prime, without the ability to transform into a semi-truck. John Edwards can charm the wallpaper off of a Carolina living room, but his folksy routine doesn't work on television; it comes off hollow and tends to irritate Northerners. Howard Dean had the opposite effect, he spoke of the South like they were an alien race and he had a forced smile that made people nervous, and had Iowans locking their doors at night. Mitt Romney has a tone of desperation, and even McCain, who once had honesty on his side now sounds old and weary. Listening to Hillary Clinton's oration is like being stabbed with spoon, it hurts so much and you wish it would just puncture the skin so you could feel something other than sheer discomfort. Then there was George Bush, who was a master at schmoozing with the common people, but when you put him in front of a microphone he had about as much confidence as an 8th grader with dental headgear giving a pep talk at the school homecoming rally.

So why doesn't Obama sound like a phony? How come he can say the same thing as the other candidates and seem authentic. How can a man run for the Presidency of the United States and somehow appear humble? What makes Obama the smoothest most natural politician in a generation. I'm not sure but I think it's his voice.

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