I find American Presidential election is fascinating. From the start of the nomination process to the end of the concession and the winning speeches, the roller coaster ride that an average person may go through witnessing all dramas, cries and joys unfolding in television set or from internet stream, to me is simply irresistible. On November 6 after a long workday, I was glued to my television set and handheld computing device. The graphs and charts of states where vote results were coming from, the exit polls, varied punditry from CNN to Fox to CBS, NBC, ABC and of course Canadian CBC and British BBC, pouring over in coming results, analysis, disarrayed predictions, all these were shaping the evening to an exciting finale.
By the time Romney was giving his concession speech, my eyes were drooping with sleep. And when Obama was delivering the victory speech after winning the second term in a nail biting election, I was half asleep. That night I had a peaceful but dreamless sleep.
I knew Obama would win in the end. I am not a pollster, nor am I a highly paid political strategist. My self-assured confidence in Obama’s win was based on my observations of Americans, from close to far proximity in various time of my life.
Last four years the world economy had turbulence. Financial crisis gripped every parts of our globe. No one remained immune. Job loss was rampant. Consumer confidence took a nose dive to the south. Nonsensical wars and violence continued to rage. Thousands died or maimed for the reasons and belief beyond contemplation.
American debt reached its record high point. Budget deficits are in its widening tempo. People using food stamps and other charities soared. Governor Romney and President Obama both addressed these concerns in their speeches and heated debates, while the ordinary voters listened to their words, observed the pace of frantic campaigns and spiraling negative ads.
There will surely be plenty of analysis done on how Obama won and Romney lost. The following are my two cents:
· Despite all the negative epithets thrown at Obama, this President did accomplish more than the last fear mongering one:
o Ended the ill advised and costly war in Iraq
o Shifted attention and resources to Afghanistan where the need to resolve a war that has been raging for more than a decade grown but was neglected by the previous Bush administration for the reasons I never understood clearly.
o Decimated the extremists and violent groups like Al Qaeda and their ilk, not by spreading fear but by pin point accuracy targeting Laden and his cohorts and also embracing the friends in the troubling regions.
o Helped in flourishing “Arab Spring”, the ongoing revolution in a region, where one after another dictator is falling apart, and replaced by long sought after democracy. The road to democracy from brutal dictatorship has never been easy, but the moral and the tactical support provided by America to desperate people and allies are proving to be effective, and in the long run, have good potential bringing peace in this tragically unstable region.
o Took steps to correcting the dismal health care system in America. Though there are misconceptions remain about Obamacare, and there are fear mongers who would like to give it a bad name, but the very essence of humanity, caring for the sick and the vulnerable is the principle of this universal health care prototype.
o Helped the financial industries with pragmatic approach by bailouts where is needed, and regulations where warranted.
o Stopped the hemorrhaging job loss by economy boosting activities and support that have cut down unemployment rate and grew jobs by many millions in past two years.
o And above all, by presenting a vision of a more tolerant and diverse America than his opponent cared to embrace.
The second term for President Obama will not be easy. The challenges are many. The election results show a polarized nation. The red and the blue states in the electoral map, though seem colourful, but indicate toward a nation where perceptions of reality vary widely based on one’s political beliefs. However, behind all these distorted lenses through which ordinary people may perceive their world, the common yearning for peace and stability has the good probability bringing this culturally diversified nation in unity.
American election is indeed fascinating. In his victory speech, Obama’s soaring voice delivered a positive note: “Tonight, more than 200 years after a former colony won the right to determine its own destiny, the task of perfecting our union moves forward. It moves forward because of you. It moves forward because you reaffirmed the spirit that has triumphed over war and depression; the spirit that has lifted this country from the depths of despair to the great heights of hope -- the belief that while each of us will pursue our own individual dreams, we are an American family, and we rise or fall together, as one nation, and as one people”.
And as one people, united, everything can be achieved.