I went to see Obama last night. He had a fundraiser at H20, a yuppie disco/restaurant in Southwest DC. I was curious about how he is in person. I'm still absorbing the many impressions I got. But one thing stays in my head. This guy is a liberal. Make no mistake about that. He may, in fact, be the most effective liberal advocate I've heard in my lifetime. As a conservative, I think he could be absolutely lethal to what's left of the tradition of individualism, self-reliance, and small government that I find myself quixotically attached to. And as a simple observer, I really don't see what's stopping him from becoming the next president. The overwhelming first impression that you get - from the exhausted but vibrant stump speech, the diverse nature of the crowd, the swell of the various applause lines - is that this is the candidate for real change. He has what Reagan had in 1980 and Clinton had in 1992: the wind at his back. Sometimes, elections really do come down to a simple choice: change or more of the same?
Being compared to Reagan is about the ultimate political compliment, but there's a little snark in there as well since Reagan always looked good, but usually there was little substance behind the glamor.
Intellectually, Obama would be my pick for the next president. His insights are both deep and wide, and that's the kind of person we need in the White House in these days when everything about our world is rapidly changing. But the problem is that Obama might have problems getting elected because he tends to talk over people's heads. Like it or not, the voters want to hear solutions to our problems that they can understand. Sometimes that means you get someone like Bush, but the trick is to be able to describe complicated matters in simple terms. Jesus did that with parables, and a lot of politicians could follow his example to good effect.
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!