Now blogging at diego's weblog. See you over there!

four more years it is

The last couple of days I've been busy with a couple of other things (work and still recovering from my flu/cold from the last two weeks) but of course, politics junkie that I am, I watched closely the comings and goings of the US Presidential election.

Yesterday I watched both Sen. Kerry's concession speech and President Bush's victory speech. I thought that Kerry did a good thing in not keeping this going on for too long when it was clear that it was almost impossible to win, and I wish more people would point out that it was a graceful gesture. They could have continued on, but didn't, and everyone was spared another draining and bitter fight that would almost certainly ended up with the same result. I also thought that Bush's speech was ok, and I sincerely hope he will act on some of the things he said, and maybe (such as working to earn the support of those who didn't vote for him), just maybe, now that the GOP has such clear control, and that Mr. Bush isn't running again for re-election, he will tilt a bit more towards the center, and help generate a climate of more cooperation and mutual respect. Likely? Maybe not. Possible? Yes. As the New York Times noted yesterday: "[...] after the inevitable, and necessary, period of disappointment, mourning, and even anger, among those who opposed his re-election, there should be a period in which his calls today for partisan healing should be taken at face value." No less would have been asked of the other side had Kerry won.

Bush won a clear majority, but that was still determined only by a difference of a couple of percentage points and about 5% of the electoral votes. Half of the US still thinks differently. It's a nation where political (and even philosophical) discourse is being held on a global scale. And there has to be a way for it to be come a bit more reasonable, and reasoned. There was a brief moment after the first debate during which the campaigns suddenly started debating real issues, questions of use of force, or the US's role in the world, etc. After a few days it quickly degenerated back into the usual he said/I said baloney. But that moment showed that a real discussion is possible. Here's hoping that becomes the norm, rather than the exception (I know, I'm an idealist, what can I say).

At least what I was thinking of a clear victory more or less happened. There was no protracted legal fight, and little uncertainty, which is good (Again, kudos to Kerry for that).

Finally: One comment I got a couple of days ago pointed to William Gibson's weblog, who had started to blog again in mid-October to make his voice heard. I totally missed it, I kept the link but had unsubscribed from the feed (which you can bet won't happen again) because back at the beginning of the year he said he wasn't blogging again until his new book came out. Anyway, yesterday he had a good quote:

Virgil, as ever, has it down: "Dis aliter visum."

Categories: geopolitics
Posted by diego on November 4 2004 at 10:40 AM

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