Bourbon Cowboy

The adventures of an urbane bar-hopping transplant to New York.

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Location: New York, New York, United States

I'm a storyteller in the New York area who is a regular on NPR's "This American Life" and at shows around the city. Moved to New York in 2006 and am working on selling a memoir of my years as a greeting card writer, and (as a personal, noncommercial obsession) a nonfiction book called "How to Love God Without Being a Jerk." My agent is Adam Chromy at Artists and Artisans. If you came here after hearing about my book on "This American Life" and Googling my name, the "How to Love God" book itself isn't in print yet, and may not even see print in its current form (I'm focusing on humorous memoir), but here's a sample I've posted in case you're curious anyway: Sample How To Love God Introduction, Pt. 1 of 3. Or just look through the archives for September 18, 2007.) The book you should be expecting is the greeting card book, about which more information is pending. Keep checking back!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

It's Obama

Kos does the math and comes up with the same thing I've been telling all my friends: Obama gets the nomination. Not in a landslide, but in a consistently leading sort of way. I predict he'll be the nominee, and I predict he'll destroy McCain in the general election.

I've made this case in personal conversations, but never on this blog, so here's my thinking: The hardcore conservative base--that 30% living-in-another-reality of the electorate that still basically approves of what Bush is doing--hates McCain even more than Democrats hate Lieberman. They haven't had to compromise for eight years and they're not going to start listening to other people now. And McCain--to judge not only by his own past, but in his noticeably tepid acceptance of Bush's endorsement--hates Bush. So that Bushite 30% will either stay home or--in many cases--vote for Obama, since he's clearly the most authentically religious candidate running.

This leaves the majority 70% of the electorate who have to choose between McCain and Obama, and again, this is a fairly easy case for Obama to win. Because McCain's two biggest strengths in the past have been 1.) that he draws consensus-minded independents, and 2.) that the press just loves him to death. And Obama is significantly more popular among independents (since even hard rightists who hate McCain are favoring Obama), and the press loves Obama even more than they love McCain. Throw in the fact that McCain has gone on record saying things like "We'll be in Iraq for a hundred years" and "I'm not that good at domestic policy," and he practically sinks himself--especially if, as I dearly hope, Obama comes up with an answer to Hillary's "3 a.m. phone call" ad that says, "When the terrorists attacked, Obama didn't panic, he didn't attack the wrong people, and he didn't throw the Constitution under the bus. That's taking a long view. That's smart defense." (Or something like that. I'm no sloganeer.)

Throw in the anecdotal evidence that Obama's own groundswell of support consistently sets records in halls and stadiums across the land (Obama got another record-setting $55 million last month, while McCain--the presumptive Republican nominee in the party of rich people--drew only $12 million), and that our foreign allies (including Sweden's p.m., who has never weighed in on such things before) are all consistently excited by the prospect of an Obama presidency...well, how does McCain even start to fight that, given how the party that's supposed to be behind him can barely stop sharpening their knives long enough to toss him a few nickels?

Of course, Obama could suddenly wind up being named in a prostitution sting, so I'm trying not to get too cocky. But my strong suspicion is that all the "W" bumper stickers, come November, will be replaced by ones reading "O." I've officially stopped worrying.

UPDATE: I should add, of course, that the nusto ultraright wing is already calling Obama a Muslim, a jihadist, linking him with a Black Panther ("Obama's a violent thug!") and his Black Nationalist preacher ("Obama wants black people to rule over whites!"), and so forth; I'm not saying it won't get ugly. (And those ugly elements are the Republicans' worst cancer.) But the interesting thing is that to object to McCain, you only have to look at his actual policies. To find something seriously objectionable about Obama, you have to actually lie out your ass. The only serious knock against him (outside Rezko, which should be yesterday's news by now) is his light experience. The voters haven't cared so far--because he's obviously smart, shows good judgment, and has learned quickly how to kneecap even the Clinton machine--and I predict they'll continue not to care.



Blogger Chad E Burns said...

OK, Dave--you're in the zeitgeist again. :) although not as big as Sullivan by a long shot--my opening story on my blog

is on Who's Winning--you're more hopeful than I am about the religious right supporting Obama--but other than that I agree with what you said, and that Obama is going to be the nominee and win in November--but I don't think it will be easy or pretty.

I know this might sound cheezy, but I do believe Obama is our modern day Lincoln--a man for "such a time as this."

I hope you (or anyone here) will check out my blog and let me know what you think about my take on the political position of Obama.

3/12/2008 12:47 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...


So I see you've cooled to McCain? I remember you used to like him, by your own admission, because he was from Arizona! I'm sure he's a nice guy, and I appreciate his time spent in torture in 'Nam, and (to be honest) he'd be a lot better than the other schmucks the GOP offered this season, but I'd hate to see him become Prez. "One hundred years of war," "Bomb-bomb-bomb bomb-bomb Iran" and such statements scare the crap out of me.

Obama's our guy. Every day I bite my nails that some dark secret doesn't come out about him (why do all politicians have dabblings in corruption?!), or that some smear from Hillary doesn't stick, or that he doesn't say something he'll regret. In this day and age, one slip of the tongue is the end of a political career. Every last thing is televised.

I'm also afraid his victory will bring out all the KKK nuts and he'll be assassinated early on, though of course that could backfire on those kooks and make him into a martyr.

But all of it might be moot, because I'm got $20 on Bush pulling a "whoopsie" mid-October. There will just happen to be a huge natural disaster / terrorist attack / infrastructure collapse and he'll suspend elections "until everything is straightened out." They passed it as law last year, did you know that? That the president has authority to suspend elections in the case of a national emergency (I forget the law #, but I'm sure it wouldn't be hard to look up). I don't think the overlords from the Project for a New American Century will allow someone like Obama to take over and jeopardize their plans for world market domination. Whether Bush was behind 9/11 or not, his buddies will be behind the next one. But we'll never know about it, because not only will the next president "play nice" and not release such details, but they'll probably be shredded and deleted anyway, if and when they leave office. But don't be too surprised if, one year from now, we still have Bush "until this disaster blows over." Which, of course, will be just long enough to arrange for one of his associates to take over instead of holding an election.

And, yes, I do believe it can and might happen. I don't think that makes me a conspiracy nut -- not with this administration, which has had (by some counts) over 100 scandals just as bad or worse than Watergate and just sailed right through them. It's nice to control the strings.

Anyway, enough ranting. It will be an exciting -- and nervous-making -- political season!

3/12/2008 6:52 PM  
Blogger Jason Rohrblogger said...

Others have counted out the Clintons only to see them rise from the ashes and win the day. Heard anything from Newt Gingrich or Ken Starr lately? And you never will...

3/12/2008 8:48 PM  

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