An Interesting Turn of Events

Obama 08

So, Obama is now US president. It’s 4am, I’m waiting for the victory speech before I head off to bed, though it seems like suspense is the order of the day and I don’t know if I can survive much longer. But I had to find out as it happened, I really didn’t want to find out when the news was hours-old.

I was hoping to vote myself – but the absentee voting system was confusing and asked for all sorts of information I didn’t have on me (I hope my parents have my SSN…) So I’m glad it went the way it did. Otherwise I’d always wonder if that one vote would have made a difference, you know?

I have to say, the BBC coverage was really impressive; the questions they asked were great. In one of their (many and varied) interviews with political persons this was asked (its not accurate):

“The Bush administration has spent millions on improving their image and international relations; and as Obama’s middle name is Hussein, would the government see his election as a success in that respect, for Middle Eastern countries in particular?”

It was shielded pretty clumsily by the woman being interviewed, who I believe was connected to the Republican party in some way (she had some very negative views on Obama’s persidency), and I don’t think she really understood the gist of the question but rather heard ‘Obama’s election a success’ part only and started protesting against the Obama campaign and his various ideals.

The BBC’s pretty awesome, actually. I remember talking to some American a while back – Alex, maybe? – about the irritating TV license fee that costs my house £150 each year, but was reminded about how valuable the mostly impartial and well-rounded views it brings are. My first year in my media degree I was introduced to the crazily one-sided (mostly Republican) views of Fox News and Rupert Murdoch, and my eyes have been opened all the more as I study advertising tactics and persuasive techniques employed in the media. Those kinds of impartial views are rarely seen as everyone has an agenda that they push, however subtly or obviously.

On a side note, this last year I’ve realised more and more just how alien the US culture is to me. I’m really curious what it would be like to go to an American high school – and have a 2,000-strong year group. And have adverts on TVs that shamelessly shout at me to buy cars from a dealership run by a specific person, whose character is supposed to endear me to that particular one. And live somewhere where ‘popping round’ someone’s house involves a 20-minute drive at the very least. And go to a university that has a competitive sports culture. How strange. I’m curious how I’d cope.

Right, McCain’s speech has just finished, ’twas very admirable. Obama doesn’t seem to be coming on soon, so I’ll catch you later.