Free Advice for Obama

Quote of the Day:     “A lot of people like that re-form. Maybe we should get us some.”  —Junior to Pappy O’Daniel, O’ Brother Where Art Thou

It’s an historic moment in time for Barack Obama, and really for the United States as a whole.  The guy deserves a few days off to savor the accomplishment of securing the Democratic nomination for President.  But McCain already challenged him to ten–ten?–town hall style debates, so, as long as your campaign is working on a response to that, you might as well consider a few of Travellinbaen’s suggestions.

There are a lot of people like me out there who are so disgusted with the mess the Republicans have made over the last eight years that they will literally vote for a yellow dog before they consider McCain.  But the collective memory of most of the populace is about two weeks.  So I don’t think you can count on this “no four more years of Bush” tagline to carry the day without some other lines of attack.  There is also another small problem.  You are a different race than the vast majority of the voting public.  And the sound of your name brings up some pretty nasty images in people’s minds when they hear it.  And you had a wingnut for a pastor.  There will be a lot of people, in a lot of states, that will vote against you for those reasons alone. Yes, yes, you have inspired thousands of new voters.  But they’ve been inspired for quite awhile now, and they need to stay inspired for about five more months.  Or take a break, get bored with you for a bit, then get re-inspired in time for the October-November push.  That’s where Travellinbaen’s free advice comes in.

Change for the sake of change is good.  Even better would be framing some issues that we haven’t heard about before as important in this campaign.  Your opponents are really good at this.  They have come up with gay marriage bans, anti-abortion judges (anyone ever wonder why between the Reagan, Bush, Bush, Bush presidencies–20 out of 28 years, none of their appointees have ever actually banned abortion–sorry, a post for another day), flag burning, war hero tarring, ol Ronnie even made an issue out of the sun rising.  And they’ll come up with something for you.  But you can beat them at their own game.  You can raise real issues, that people can get behind, and a couple of these can even make those race voters decide whether they fear American black people more or various foreign nationalities.  So, without further ado, try these out for size, and don’t hesitate to contact Travellinbaen if you need anything else:

  1.  Solar Energy–Under your administration, every new government building will include solar panels. A program will be established to place them on every existing Federal building over the next ten years. Enormous tax incentives and matching grants will be in place for the States to install solar panels as well, particularly on schools.  A Federal law will be passed to force the energy companies in all states to buy back any excess power produced and put on the grid. This is where schools come in.  They’ll be making surplus power in the summer and on holidays.  And here is the beauty of it: manufacturing of the panels  will greatly accelerate, producing construction, industrial, and installation/maintenance jobs everywhere.  The price of panels will come down with the increased supply and homeowners can then afford to stick them on their roof.  With all our new, plentiful, clean electric power, the move to electric cars can accellerate and we won’t have to buy all that oil from those damned A-rabs (you just won some redneck votes, and re-inspired the hippies and kids).
  2. Offshore wind power–All the same justifications, but now you’ve got the surfers and sportfisherman.  Just make sure the blades are too high up to get entangled with lures or grapnels.
  3. A health care surtax on all goods manufactured overseas by companies based in America or with at least 50% of their sales in America.  It’s health premiums more than anything killing our auto industry, much of our other manufacturing industry, and causing the loss and lack of job creation in small business.  That money goes in to a trust fund to supplement anything else we can come up with to provide universal health care for kids.  I personally believe in universal health care, period, but this would be a good start.  People could see that it works at least as good as the current insurance run system.  And American business would save some bucks, only needing to insure one or two people instead of, say four.  Who are we sticking it to here?  Yep, the Chinese, and I think a few more people could get on board with that.
  4. Judges.  Once again, we’re taking a stale old issue, and freshening it up.  Pick two guys, one primarily a plaintiff’s lawyer, and one defense lawyer.  They cannot be from major firms.  It should be two regular Travellinbaen’s.  As a matter of fact, I’d seriously consider the job if offered.  Let us find out who the fair judges are and you put them on the bench.  It’s not hard to do, but there is no public source for getting this information.  No committee can learn the truth.  Why?  Lawyers only speak of these things in hushed voices and to close confidants.  Travellinbaen and some honest defense lawyer, (my friend Adam would do it pretty cheap I think) could get you reliable info on this. We desperately need more intellectually honest Judges in this country, but the idea is becoming passe.  How many votes will this get you?  Well, not many, but its the right thing to do.  And if you do that on enough issues, you’ll bring around a few of the people Reverend Wright has scared the hell out of.

About travellinbaen

I'm a 40 year old lawyer living in Ridgeland, Mississippi. I'm several years and a couple hundred miles removed from most of my old running buddies so I started the blog to provide an outlet for many of the observations and ideas that used to be the subjects of our late night/happy hour/halftime conversations and arguments.
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6 Responses to Free Advice for Obama

  1. goodtimepolitics says:

    Advice, not to make statements that he will have to back away from later! Such as this one:

  2. benafia says:


    I wish you were on the Obama teams radar!

    Too little has been said about good specific proposals that can serve as springboards for addressing the serious, if not fatal, issues facing the nation other than war.

    Thanks a lot for this post.

  3. Thanks benafia–if you know anybody with the campaign, pass it on.

    I’ll have to think about goodtime’s comment and adding some foreign policy advice tomorrow. Dems always need that, and there is a school of thought that its the strength of the neocons. But come to think of it, those guys could use some advice from Travellinbaen too, if that’s what they call their strength.

  4. Ben K says:

    McCain, I dont think, is considered part of the damaged Republican brand. I dont see that line of attack working.

  5. supercynic says:

    Abbas’ reaction to Obama’s statement is more a reflection of Palestinian reactionism than a misstatement by Obama. Or if one is going to criticize Obama on this one, go ahead and criticize McCain. He hasn’t committed to East Jerusalem serving as the capital of a Palestinian state either. In fact, Hamas has stated that it sees no difference between the candidates–it sees them both as being hostile to its goals. The difference is Obama will at least try to listen, understand, and create a peaceful solution to the problem. McCain ’08 will just bomb them.

    Travellinbaen — your astute observations about energy were addressed in Obama’s speech on Tuesday. So, he’s with you there.

    The day we get intellectually honest and consistent judges in this country on the state and federal level will be the day that supercynic becomes superoptimistic. Obviously, we’re on the same page on this one, and I pray for it everyday.

  6. supercynic says:

    Oh, and I realize that Abbas is not affiliated with Hamas. My point is merely that Obama and McCain have both been showing support for Israel, which often causes a knee-jerk condemnation from the Palestinian Authority (Abbas) and Hamas.

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