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August 22, 2008

Why Obama, by Pierre de Reeder (Rilo Kiley)

Why Obama is a series of guest essays by musicians and authors, where they share their support for Democratic United States presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama and offer arguments why he needs to be elected president of the United States.

Pierre de Reeder is the bassist for Rilo Kiley, and released his solo debut album, The Way That It Was, earlier this month.

In his own words, here is Pierre de Reeder's Why Obama essay:

I got an email from Barack Obama today. This time he was telling me who the lucky few were who get to join him backstage in Denver just before he accepts the official nomination at the democratic convention. Between his, his campaign manager David Plouffe, and an occasional message from Michelle, I'm always "in the know" on the current happenings in Obama's campaign. This latest email was similar to the one I got a few months ago announcing who would get to join him for a sit down dinner comprised of him and five supporters. For that, people including myself, wrote a small letter describing who they are, what they do, and anything they'd like to say about their support. I have to admit I was waiting for the choices for that dinner like a lottery ticket holder. But my numbers didn't come up. Oh well. I think I'm a winner even so. Just in the fact that for the first time in my political adulthood there is a candidate with whom I'm truly inspired by. Not in mere enthusiasm or optimism or fervor, but inspired by a previously seemingly unattainable fact that someone gets it. Obama time and time again, from issue to issue, demonstrates an incredibly rational and logical grasp of what he is talking about. Not in idealistic bursts of grand speech, which he is certainly capable of, but in nuanced, thoughtful answers to subjects and questions brought to him. So much so that the contrary positions of McCain and his pundits, when they speak on the same, seem as ridiculous as a wickedly satirical Saturday Night Live skit. Ah! And to that, regardless, I throw my hands up in heart-sinking sadness that there are so many who will, again, vote to keep even a near approximation of our dreadful, non-intellectual, extraordinarily hypocritical administration in office. Digress, digress. But Obama gets it. He gets it when he has the awareness to know that our mere presence in the middle east is inflammatory and is the sole reason for provoking all the 'terror' that the Bush's and McCain's take no responsibility for... gouging a wound then condemning the blood for staining. He gets it when oil companies want to postpone the transition to cleaner, renewable energy, by promoting new drilling off our shores and ecological reserves, which will in fact offer no significant short term nor long term relief of gas prices, but only offer significantly more environmental damage. He gets it when he watches Sicko! He gets it. What amazes me, is how others don't. In watching the Rick Warren forum the other night, one glaring example was the question and answer of the "is there evil" question. The subtle, profound illuminations that Obama answered with went straight over the audience's heads. He accurately spoke of the shades of what you could call evil from what we see in our day to day lives, in our neighborhoods, in our places of work, our own country, and so on. An answer that I would say is 'a given' understanding of the complexities of such a ridiculous question. But the simple fact that John McCain's 7 year oldish, light side vs. dark side of the force "defeat it" answer roused such applause, you instantly feel that sadness again. So why Obama? Because that sadness is suffocating. It's the sadness that we are capable of so much more than we are doing now in so many ways. That we know a path that we need to begin to take to literally save the world. It's no coincidence that if you polled all the sharpest, most intellectual, most factual, and scientific minds in the entire modern free world on who should be our next president, that the results of that poll would not make an appearance on Fox News.

Pierre de Reeder links:

Pierre de Reeder's website
Pierre de Reeder's MySpace page
Pierre de Reeder's Wikipedia entry
Rilo Kiley website

Barack Obama link:

Barack Obama presidential campaign website

also at Largehearted Boy:

other Why Obama essays
Book Notes (authors create playlists for their book)
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)
guest book reviews
musician/author interviews