Tanned, Tested & Rested…

Thanks for 4 More Years!

Kent Manthie

Hi everyone.  Sorry for the dearth of postings in the past week or two – I’ve been on vacation.  But I’m back now and I wanted to just post a little something to whet your appetites.

Well, it’s Sunday morning right now, November 11, 2012 as I write this.  That means it’s been almost a week since the euphoria of Election Night:  at 8:17 PM, Pacific Time (11:17 on the East Coast:  NYC, D.C., etc.) CNN (what I happened to be watching at the moment) called the election for Obama.  Before that, the “projections” had started to come in fast & furious just after 8:00 PM, as a little panel of pundits were pontificating on the whole thing, Wolf Blitzer and  John King kept breaking in and announcing the outcome of the returns in the elections, state by state, with that slick touch screen map they had, they looked as if they were having a ball, by going over the counties, for instance, of a particular state.  Anyhow, I think the way it works is that they don’t do any “projections” of states that have tallied over 80% of the votes, and when someone wins a particular state the winner is awarded x number of electoral votes and the magic number is 270 for a candidate to win and each state has a certain amount of electoral votes, depending on the population size, etc.  For example, when they started projecting the winners, state by state, the map looked pretty heavily red, but states like Wyoming (which Romney won) only has a population of anywhere between 500,000 – 600,000 – that is smaller than many cities in other states, so Wyoming would’ve had a small number of electoral votes, but the more populous a state, the more electoral votes.  So, as I was writing, just after 8:00 (Pacific Time), Wolf & John on CNN kept interrupting the punditry going on with projection after projection, and while Romney won many states, he won the wrong ones – states like Utah, Wyoming, Arkansas, Missouri and, no doubt, the good-ole-boy Deep South – Mississippi, Alabama & Georgia.  According to the map, it might have looked as if Obama was getting beaten, with so much red on it, but there was a big blue streak up & down the West Coast:  Washington, Oregon and, of course, California.  Arizona, home of Mexican-hating Sheriffs and creepy old people. etc, went to Romney, unfortunately, but next door, Obama won New Mexico, but lost Texas (no surprise there).  When you shifted over to the East Coast, though, where there are a lot of small states – not the huge chunks of space on a map like Utah, California, Colorado, Nevada, etc.  Up in the Northeast, there’s a lot of states that are pretty small and don’t take up a lot of space on a map, i.e., Vermont, Connecticut, Delaware, Rhode Island, New Jersey and New Hampshire; the biggest sized states include New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Maine, which the President mostly won handily – Mass., NY, PA, Vermont, Delaware, etc.

Anyway, as the projections were coming in pretty rapidly, state by state, the electoral votes were racking up quickly, with each state’s projection came more electoral votes, so even though Romney won a lot of the South, a little of the Midwest, except for liberal Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and his Mormon constituents in Utah, as well as the anti-immigrants in AZ, Obama won the states that mattered in terms of electoral votes.  In the beginning, Romney racked up some votes in the states he won, but, by about 8:10 (I’m using Pacific time here, since I live in CA) Romney had just barely broke the 200 vote barrier, while Obama was already way ahead with 240, then 250, and so on, and then, as I wrote a moment ago, at 8:17 PM, Wolf & John broke in once again for another projection – but this projection was a big surprise:  not only did they call another state for Obama, but at that moment, they called the whole election for him, because he had just won Ohio, which gave him 17 electoral votes, which, at that time, put him over the top, giving him, something like 274 votes.  After that, euphoria broke out all over – they had cameras in Chicago – Obama’s HQ – there was dancing in the streets, people were ecstatic, waving those big, inflatable “Os”, also, they showed Times Square in NYC, where, again, people were joyously reveling in the delight of Obama’s re-election.  In fact, they even had a team in Kenya, where Obama’s father was from, where it was a little after 7:00 am, Wednesday morning, due to the time change and the locals there were also joyously dancing around in their streets as well.  It was a great time for not just America, but the world; if you remember, when Bush was president, he did so many unilateral, awful things which turned the world against the US government.  We became a menace and a laughingstock under Bush, but when Obama came into office in 2009, the world breathed a collective sigh and welcomed the new administration with open arms.

When all was said and done, though – there was still a few more states to tally – Obama really kicked Romney’s ass – Obama ended up with 304 or so electoral votes to Romney’s mere 201 .  It was an electric, ecstatic night after all was said and done.  At first, during the day and into the early evening, it was a tense and close race, but the end result was a superb victory not just for Obama & Biden, but for the whole country, whether people thought so or not; for instance, I’m hoping that Obama sticks with his promise to let the Bush-era tax cuts, the ones that were only for the richest Americans and screwed the middle class, by making them carry the burden of taxation.  Since there’s such a big to-do about the so-called “fiscal cliff” that you can’t turn on the TV without hearing about and the Republican Speaker of the House says he wants to work with Obama on the “fiscal cliff”, but that he doesn’t want any raising of rates.  All this discussion about it is rather arcane – the talk about “rates” versus “increased revenues” and on the other hand, spending – there should be a minimum of spending cuts and a staying away from cutting spending on crucial programs that middle class, lower-class-working poor and just plain poor people rely on:  everything from LIHEAP, which helps those in need pay their utility bills – especially electricity, gas and phone bills; food stamps, Head Start programs, cuts in Medicare, etc.  What should be cut is defense spending – there is so much spending going on in the defense sector which is not that necessary – especially now that the troops are coming home from the waste of time, lives and money that the Iraq adventure was and the gradual drawdown of troops in Afghanistan as well, both of which were bleeding this country dry – and the whole time that was going on, Republicans were bawling about how we need to cut all this “wasteful” (in their eyes) spending, they never even broached the subject of the billions being wasted in Iraq & Afghanistan.

So, let’s hope that the President and Speaker Boehner as well as the Senate, which is, at least, more friendly, even more so now that the Democratic majority has been upped to 55-45, in favor of the Dems, of course.  Unfortunately, they’re still 5 votes short of the 60 votes needed to pass many bills, that is, without any Republican crossover.  The only obstacle they face now is the tool that the minority party has, which is the filibuster.  Of course, you don’t want to get rid of the filibuster because then what happens if, gawd forbid, the Republicans somehow get lucky and back into a majority (hopefully not for decades, if ever) and the Democrats are the minority – they’ll need the filibuster too, so it’s not wise to do away with something that may be needed in the future by the Dems.

Well, let’s all just, at least for now, bask in the ecstasy of Obama’s victory!  This is a great time!  Plus, now that Obama doesn’t have to worry about re-election anymore, he can be much more bold and get things done that might’ve been used against him in a re-election.

Thanks to all who voted for Obama!!!  WE WON!!!




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