james debate
james debate

Wednesday 5 November 2008

Well it happened. To be fair, in the past few months there has not really been a lot of doubt about who would win this election. Indeed amongst many people well versed in politics who had seen Obama's campaign in action there really hasn't been much doubt since Barack Obama won the nomination before the summer. When heavyweight Republicans like Rupert Murdoch and Karl Rover start predicting Obama landslides so early, you know that there's not a whole lot of hope in the Republican camp.

None of that dulled the excitement and energy on election night though. Nothing like this has ever been seen before, as voters turned out in record breaking numbers and even here in England many many people stayed up all night to watch the results come in. Never before has an American election been watched by so many people all over the world, which just goes to reflect how important this election has been.

ephemeric barack obama president

Never before has spontaneous partying broken out in the streets all over America and even in other countries (and England) over the election of a President. There is no doubt about it, this is the result that the vast vast majority of the world was praying for.

At the time of writing Obama has 349 electoral votes to Mccain's 163, and it looks likely the totals will end up 364 to 173. Obama also has 53% of the popular vote, which might even go up. This is the highest proportion of the popular vote any democrat has ever had running for president.

So why is this such great news for most people around the world?

Many, many reasons. When Clinton left the white house America was respected and admired. We had been going through an unparalleled period of peace and the economy was in some of the best shape it has ever been. Eight years later and extended Republican control over the country has taken its toll, crippling the world's economy, plunging us into constant war in multiple countries at a time, and making our once proud country a complete joke around the world, hated for our arrogance, and laughed at for our ignorance.

This is one of the main reasons support for Barack Obama abroad and from expats was as high as 86%. People know America is the most powerful country in the world and we want a superpower we can admire and respect, and most importantly trust. In the past eight years none of these things have been the case.

History is full of big empires becoming fat and arrogant and then falling; the Romans, the Persians, and even the old British Empire. All signs in recent times pointed to the same happening with America. When you have insane leaders who base policy off the Bible and think we have a God given dominion over every other country in the world, who lie to their own people and defy the international community to wage illegal wars. Who ignore the plight of the environment, luddites who don't believe in healthcare or technology. It's been an unmitigated disaster, but fortunately Americans have proven themselves and triumphed in the face of defeat, declaring that they are intelligent enough to govern themselves and change things for the better. This is why Americans are so proud and happy right now, and why the World at large is looking at America with a newfound admiration once again.

There is also the absolutely massive milestone that has been reached here with the first ever African American President. Racism, prejudice, hatred have all been unpleasant hallmarks throughout American history, and this is clearly a massive indication that we are starting to put all that behind us, and thank God. It's a huge achievement and one that makes me very proud.

Remember that this is our generation who did this. Remember my article last week about the growing power of youth? Well youth made the difference here. Today's youth have grown up in an idealistic world where intolerance, hatred and racism is simply not allowed and now we're beginning to see the effect of this youth's growing influence and it is a good sign for the future of world politics. These are the people who will continue to run the world now and so far it's a vision of equality and hope. One where anyone can achieve anything and where the fear and hatred that dominated the past is resigned to the dark annals of time.

We've regained our pride. We've regained our faith in politics and our ability to affect change. Now we can make the world a better place.

This bright new world begins today, and THAT is why everybody is so excited right now.

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