If you were asking me to write a capsule description of what I would look for in the next President of the United States, that would be it. Having met him and then having watched him for the last 12 months run one of the best-executed and cleanest major presidential campaigns in recent memory, I have no doubt that Senator Obama has the judgment, bearing, intellect, and high ethnical standards to be an outstanding president – completely aside from the movement that has formed around him, and in complete contradition to the silly assertions by both the Clinton and McCain campaigns that he’s somehow not ready.
If you’re an Obama supporter and you’ve ever talked politics with someone who isn’t, you’ve probably heard that he doesn’t have the experience to be President. Marc Andreessen makes the point that running the excellent campaign that Obama has run is a great demonstration of his leadership ability. Obama has a bunch of smart people working for him, getting his message out without stooping to the personal attacks that Clinton and McCain seem to enjoy so much. People talk about how he doesn’t know anything about foreign policy. The guy lived in Indonesia for a couple years as a kid. George Bush probably can’t even spell Indonesia. Oh, wait, was that an immature personal attack? Forget I said that. I think there’s a strange misperception that people from other countries are completely and totally different from people living in the United States, and dealing with Americans will in no way prepare you to talk to anyone from any other country. This is utterly absurd. Sure, cultures are different, and one should be aware of these differences. But it’s not like they’re from a different planet. Find out a bit about a culture, and treat them with respect, and they’re going to respond positively to you. Anyway, I didn’t need convincing that Obama is the best candidate for the job. But others do, and maybe this article will help.