Obama the Celebrity - Is Celebrity a Negative?

The McCain campaign released a television attack ad against Obama yesterday focusing on three issues: Obama's celebrity, his refusal to support offshore drilling, and that he will raise taxes. The funny thing about this attack ad is that it was all true although he twisted them without intelligently dealing with. The other interesting thing is that these "attacks" are all viewed as positives by Obama supporters.

The McCain camp wants me to link Obama's celebrity with the irresponsible celebrities like Paris Hilton and Britney Spears who are partiers, alcoholics, and a terrible parent, but the case just does not stand. When I see Obama's celebrity, I think charisma. Obama's just a politician, yet he has somehow become celebrity. Something about his person and his message of change has connected with the American people and the people around the world. That is the only reason he, as a complete underdog, was able to go against the Clinton political machine and win. McCain asks in the commercial if Obama is ready to lead, but if the savviness with which he has ran his campaign and the event-making machine with which he has garnished media attention transfers into the way he operates the presidency, he will be able to get the American people behind him to bring about change in Washington.

The Republicans like to say that Obama is all fluff, but anyone can go to his website and read all of his stances on various issues. He is not all fluff. One does not have to be fluff to connect to the American people. In the end, I do not think it is fluffiness that the Republicans dislike about Obama, it's those stances on the issue that they disagree with. In regards to the various attacks, I will be quoting from his website.

As for his stance on taxes, Obama says that "he will reverse most of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest taxpayers." His tax policy highlights the government making spending cuts if they make tax cuts or tax increases to pay for new proposed programs. This is called PAYGO in political lingo, which means the government pays for its decisions as it makes them. He also proposes to "cut pork barrel spending," "make government spending more accountable and efficient," "end wasteful government spending," "end tax haven abuse," and "close special interest corporate loopholes." He explains these stances more thoroughly on his website. That sounds like a good tax plan to me. McCain says that Obama wants to raise taxes on the wealthy and that sounds fiscally responsible to me at this time.

As for Obama's stance against offshore drilling, McCain is right in stating that Obama is against it. The commercial states that, but it does not go into Obama's thought out reason why. His reasoning is that the oil companies should start drilling with the land contracts that they already have. His website states: "The 68 million acres of stockpiled leases have the potential to produce an additional 4.8 million barrels of oil each day. This would nearly double total U.S. oil production. The Obama plan would force oil and gas companies to either produce or pay a fee on unused federal onshore and offshore leases they are stockpiling." I know that my grandparents signed a contract with an oil company for the oil under our farm around fifty years ago. The contract has no sunset clause, but the oil company has not began to drill. The oil companies would much rather profit from federal oil rather than drill for the oil they already have the right to drill. I say that we let the people's oil increase in value while the oil companies start to drill the oil they have the right to. Offshore drilling seems to just provide an easy out to explain away the gas prices when it is really insignificant. The oil companies need to build more refineries, drill the oil they already have access to, and start investing in energy from renewable sources.

Still being undecided, I know what Obama's message is: "Change we can believe in." I still really have no idea what McCain's message is. McCain used to be a candidate for change, but the "straight-talk express" isn't talking about change or his own message all that much anymore. I want change in Washington. McCain should have commercials focusing on the changes he wants to bring rather than resort to the traditional political attack ads that I hate. I really do not appreciate politicians dealing unfairly with other people's viewpoints rather than dealing intelligently with the issues.