I went to one of the Obama Unite for Change events last weekend. Rather than go to the one here in our small town, I went to the bigger one down in Santa Rosa. It was a good event, run well, which is one of the things I was looking to see. The campaign was selling the usual swag: lawn signs, buttons, bumper stickers (bought one of those for each of our cars). They were also selling T-shirts, which I noticed had something a little unusual: besides the logo, it had a picture of the candidate. From the last cycle, I don’t remember Dean shirts, or Kerry shirts, or Bush shirts that had the candidate’s face. And I don’t remember seeing that in the primaries this time, either.
In conversation with some of the other attendees, I was struck by how much some of them seemed to have invested in Obama personally; one guy gushed that he thought that Obama would “heal the racial divide in this country.” Another woman professed her love for Obama in a way that I thought was borderline creepy.
The Obama campaign is smart; they’ve purposely worked on making their guy an icon. But some of his supporters are just a bit out of whack. Which brings me to how many on the left are freaking out now that the primaries are over and Obama has started tacking to the center.
Really, what were they thinking he would do? Obama wants to win. He’s a politician who will do whatever it takes. Personally, I absolutely want that from a Democratic candidate. If, in the middle of one of the debates, Obama stands up, emits a bloodcurdling scream, opens his mouth larger than humanly possible, and eats John McCain’s head, I will applaud our new demon master.
In the meantime, some of his strategic moves make me roll my eyes, like his sop to the superstitious yesterday. But that’s politics. No doubt we’ll see more of that.
To the lefties that have taken to the fainting couch about those moves, I heartily recommend that they read this post from John Scalzi.