Friday, November 14, 2008

Interview With Weekend America's John Moe - p.2

SEI: You spent a few days in Rexburg, Idaho for your book, Conservatize Me. [Rexburg is the seat of Madison County in Idaho, which in 2004 voted for Bush at a rate of 92%, the highest in the nation. In 2005, Moe spent the July 4th holiday there, to see if something in the atmosphere could make him more conservative. In 2008, Madison County tied for first in Idaho, with 85% of the vote going for McCain.- TBO] Have you kept track of what’s been happening there?

JM: I kept in touch with the mayor for a while there, we traded emails. I don’t think the book was read all that much in Rexburg, so he’s not in any major kind of trouble.

[Two days after the interview, Moe sends an email with this link to a recent Rexburg news item, regarding an incident on a school bus where kids were chanting "Assassinate Obama." He notes: “I’m equal parts ‘Rexburg Is Crazy’ and ‘Kids Are Idiots’ on this one.” - TBO]

SEI: Obama ended up running on lower taxes, and keeping/creating jobs at home, two concepts known to appeal to conservatives in general. Do you think, should Obama be effective as president, they could grow to, if not like, then respect Obama?

JM: That depends on how things progress...I don’t know.

I think it’s interesting that the Republicans ended up nominating McCain, who was most Democrats' favorite Republican. He’s funny, he’s self-effacing. He was the first Republican to say that Guantanamo needed to be closed down. He was the first Republican to admit that global warming was real. Instead, they oversimplify his brand as a “maverick,” by repeating that word over and over.

That brand started falling apart when he softened his stance on torture. After being tortured himself, after fighting against and denouncing the use of torture, to then have him say that some torture is all right; at that point, he stopped being a maverick and became just another politician seeking approval.

Obama ran as a social-liberal, but economically conservative. Once the Republicans abandoned fiscal prudence, the ball was the Democrats’ for the taking.

Obama ran on essential tax cuts for the populace, and gained the middle of the ground on a conservative philosophy. For example, he also said he was opposed to dumb wars, which, as rhetoric, is at the heart of conservative philosophy...

How all of that stacks up to the obstacles coming his way is up in the air. There’s still plenty of room for Fox News or the Limbaughs of the world to have an effect.

What he has going for him is that he is a skilled communicator. Between him and McCain, Obama was the more reasoned, he promises to bring less of a gut level approach to governance. And we saw that, we saw Obama weather the storms that were the primary and election processes, and we saw him keep to his message all the way through the campaign.

So, yeah, who knows?

The main thing you need to know in order to understand Obama is that he lists The Wire as his favorite show, which is pretty telling. He plays basketball really well, he makes Jay-Z references during his speeches, and his favorite show is The Wire.

Obama had this bit on Wait Wait, Don’t Tell Me ...This young reporter had called in to the show and told them that Obama had ruined a romantic possibility for him; he was trying to impress this woman, and Obama, not knowing what was going on, made a joke and the reporter never saw her again. Obama ended up calling the reporter and apologized by saying "I didn't mean to mess up your game."

Not just the fact that he would call, we now have a president who can say “I didn’t mean to mess up your game” and actually mean it. I guess change has come to America.

[This story can be found here, approximately 11m50s in. - TBO]

Next: Book Deals, A Movie Recommendation and Sports Impotency

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