Random (but not really)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Watching History

I’ve been commenting here and there, and in doing so trying to formulate my thoughts about last night’s election results.

First of all, from an historic standpoint, last night was incredibly amazing. However, I’m not what sure I, a white woman from one of the whitest states in the nation, can say to address that subject. Other are doing if far better, so go read what they’re saying, if you haven’t already.

No, what I’ve been thinking about was broached this morning by John Scalzi, but is more than that.

I’ve become something of a pragmatist in recent years. As much as I cannot stand W and his policies, I was not so foolish as to think, like others I know, that he was evil. Misguided? Yes. Foolish? Yes. Evil? No.

In that same light, I do not believe that Barack Obama is going to usher in a new liberal paradise.

Last night, listening to John McCain’s concession speech, I was reminded why I liked him so much in 2000. And I wondered where that Senator was during the election. But more than that, I saw in McCain’s speech the things I like so much about Obama.

I urge all Americans who supported me to join me in not just congratulating him, but offering our next president our goodwill and earnest effort to find ways to come together, to find the necessary compromises, to bridge our differences and help restore our prosperity, defend our security in a dangerous world, and leave our children and grandchildren a stronger, better country than we inherited.

To find the necessary compromises. To bridge our differences.

This is what I hope that President-elect Barack Obama will be able to do.

I have strong beliefs about the way the world should be. I also recognize that what I want is not necessarily what others want, and that compromise is an integral part of creating a functioning society.

No one is going to get everything they want. That’s something everyone has to realize. It is something I believe that most effective politicians understand. Because even if you have what you think is the best idea in the world, there may be multiple reasons why it’s unworkable. Or someone may have a way to make the result better, by changing the process slightly.

It’s give and take.

This is something that W. seemed incapable of comprehending, but is something that I deeply hope Obama knows already.

To paraphrase a modern troubadour, you can’t always get what you want, but sometimes you get what you need.

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