April and Kevin in Kuna Yala, the northeast coast of Panamá

Monday, November 3, 2008

Why the intensity?

I just got to an internet connection finally and saw April's "vote" post. I wanted to make a quick follow-up. In talking to folks back in the states, I've heard more intensity in this race than the past two, which I thought were more divisive. The way I looked at it this go round, any change was change for the better. But I've heard folks say for the first time ever they donated to a political campaign, or they signed up for campaign emails, or they are trying to convince family and friends not to make a mistake and vote for the wrong candidate.
Admittedly, I've missed most of the ads and news, having only listened to debates 2 and 3 on our worldband shortwave radio. So please, help me out, post a comment (or send me an email) and let me know what what is the source of your interest, your intensity, and your activism this year. (I realize I'm pretty close to election day here, but it is my first internet access in over three weeks, sorry. And hopefully none of those qualities will abate dramatically on Wednesday; an informed and involved public makes for the best government.)
And like April said, Go Vote!

4 comments:

Chris McCubbin said...

I think it's the first time in a long time people have felt like they can personally make a difference, esp on the Dem side. Look at some of the descriptions of the Obama volunteer centers on 538 (in the "on the road" posts): http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/ ...

ash said...

Kevin,

I think you said it best - our Democracy works best when the public is informed and involved.

As for my own involvement in this election, I've actually been active in the last few elections with increasing levels of involvement. In '04, Amanda and I canvassed for Kerry. This year we've been canvassing in VA for Barack, manning phone banks, etc. I think people are more worked up this time for two reasons. For one, George W. Bush has headed up one of the worst administrations in our nation's history for the last eight years. We need to direction, bad, and people realize it. For two, Barack Obama is an incredible candidate. Because he's so different than other nominated candidate, he's giving people hope that things can actually change and restoring people's faith in the system.

Dems are fired up because we're sick of Bush/Republican rule and because Obama has restored our sense of hope and faith in the system. Many Republicans are not that excited about their candidate by and large, but are change-averse ("conservative" - change-averse by definition) and Obama seems "untested" and "risky," (in no small part due to the extremely negative and devise campaign McCain has run).

There's so much more I can't even start to go into. Palin, SNL, Katie Couric, etc. Needless to say, it's definitely time for a chance, so I hope we pull this off tomorrow!

Meghan - a.k.a. best sister in the world...sorry Hilary ;) said...

We did decide, for the first time, to give to a campaign (Obama). I think that there has been a perfect storm brewing, of which only a part is Obama being a very different and energizing candidate and person. I believe another large part is that people started to wake up about the war, and then were hit with the wammy of the economy, starting with gas prices last summer (hey, it had to start somewhere for most folks). I'd write more, but it's time to go turn on CNN! Crossing my fingers....

Linda said...

I think a lot of people have been encouraged to register to vote and be active in campaigning, especially since there are major issues which they ought to be concerned about. It probably helps that there's a financial crisis which people ought to have an invested interest in.