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Author Topic: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president  (Read 1391 times)

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Offline The OverlordTopic starter

Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« on: October 19, 2008, 01:50:14 PM »

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081019/ap_on_el_pr/powell


Quote
WASHINGTON – Colin Powell, a Republican who was President Bush's first secretary of state, endorsed Democrat Barack Obama for president Sunday and criticized the tone of Republican John McCain's campaign.

The former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said either candidate, both of them senators, is qualified to be commander in chief. But he said Obama is better suited to handle the nation's economic problems as well as help improve its standing in the world.

"It isn't easy for me to disappoint Sen. McCain in the way that I have this morning, and I regret that," Powell, interviewed on NBC's "Meet the Press," said of his longtime friend, the Arizona senator.

But, he added: "I think we need a transformational figure. I think we need a president who is a generational change and that's why I'm supporting Barack Obama, not out of any lack of respect or admiration for Sen. John McCain."

Powell's endorsement has been much anticipated because he is a Republican with impressive foreign policy credentials, a subject on which Obama, a first-term senator from Illinois, is weak. Powell is a Republican centrist who is popular among moderate voters.

At the same time, Powell is a black man and Obama would be the nation's first black president. Powell said he was cognizant of the racial aspect of his endorsement, but said that was not the dominant factor in his decision. If it was, he said, he would have made the endorsement months ago.

Powell expressed disappointment in the negative tone of McCain's campaign, his choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as a running mate and McCain's and Palin's decision to focus in the closing weeks of the contest on Obama's ties to 1960s-era radical William Ayers. A co-founder of the Weather Underground, which claimed responsibility for nonfatal bombings during the Vietnam War-era, Ayers is now a college professor who lives in Obama's Chicago neighborhood. He and Obama also served together on civic boards in Chicago.

"This Bill Ayers situation that's been going on for weeks became something of a central point of the campaign," Powell said. "But Mr. McCain says that he's a washed-out terrorist. Well, then, why do we keep talking about him?"

Powell said McCain's choice of Palin raised questions about judgment.

"I don't believe she's ready to be president of the United States," Powell said.

McCain seemed dismissive of Powell's endorsement, saying he had support from four other former secretaries of state, all veterans of Republican administrations: Henry Kissinger, James A. Baker III, Lawrence Eagleburger and Alexander Haig.

"Well, I've always admired and respected Gen. Powell. We're longtime friends. This doesn't come as a surprise," he said on "Fox News Sunday."

Asked whether Powell's endorsement would undercut his campaign's assertion that Obama is not ready to lead, McCain said: "Well, again, we have a very, we have a respectful disagreement, and I think the American people will pay close attention to our message for the future and keeping America secure."

Obama called Powell to thank him for the endorsement, Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs said.

"I am beyond honored and deeply humbled to have the support of Gen. Colin Powell," Obama said in remarks prepared for a rally in Fayetteville, N.C. "Gen. Powell has defended this nation bravely, and he has embodied our highest ideals through his long and distinguished public service. ...And he knows, as we do, that this is a moment where we all need to come together as one nation — young and old, rich and poor, black and white, Republican and Democrat."

Powell said he remains a Republican, even though he sees the party moving too far to the right. Powell supports abortion rights and affirmative action, and said McCain and Palin, both opponents of abortion, could put two more conservative justices on the Supreme Court.

"I would have difficulty with two more conservative appointments to the Supreme Court, but that's what we'd be looking at in a McCain administration," Powell said.

Powell, 71, gained popularity while serving as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the nation's top military commander, during the first Gulf war under President George H.W. Bush. After retiring from the military, speculation mounted that he would run for president in 1996 — perhaps becoming the nation's first black president — but Powell opted against it.

As secretary of state, he helped make the case before the United Nations for the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, launched in March 2003.

Powell said the nation's economic crisis provided a "final exam" of sorts for both Obama and McCain.

"In the case of Mr. McCain I found that he was a little unsure as to how to deal with the economic problems that we were having," Powell said. "Almost everyday there was a different approach to the problem and that concerned me, sensing that he doesn't have a complete grasp of the economic problems that we had."

In contrast, Powell said Obama "displayed a steadiness, an intellectual curiosity, a depth of knowledge and an approach to looking at problems like this. ..."

"I think that he has a definitive way of doing business that would serve us well," Powell said.

Powell said he does not plan to campaign for Obama.

___

On the Net:

McCain: http://www.johnmccain.com

Obama: http://www.barackobama.com


Offline Vekseid

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2008, 02:20:55 PM »
Rasmussen suggests that this will influence a net 10% of voters in Obama's direction, though that poll was months ago, doesn't reflect the Powell's persuasiveness and, of course, it's only influence and not an actual decider for most people. We'll see how this turns out in the polls over the next few days, but it seems the current swing of the republican party is now in 'tear down Powell' mode, Limbaugh included. I don't think that bodes well for the future of the party... we might see some very strong third parties in the next election cycle.

Regardless, this is running out McCain's political clock.

The video:

[youtube=425,344][/youtube]


Offline The OverlordTopic starter

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2008, 02:38:00 PM »

Thanks for the post Vek this is a great video. I think that regardless of how you plan to vote, Powell is a respected man for most. That he had a brain and knew how to use it has been long since established...that he's been in Washington for how many years and has a conscience.


...well, what more can I say?

Offline Vekseid

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2008, 10:44:51 PM »
And a followup:

[youtube=425,344][/youtube]

Offline Moondazed

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Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2008, 10:52:14 PM »
If only his son hadn't been such a mindless deregulation schill when he was head of the FCC *growl*

Offline NightBird

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2008, 11:08:01 PM »
It's refreshing to hear someone with (admittedly prior) standing in the Republican party standing up against the current fascist tone the party has been taking.

And yes, as an historian, I use the word 'fascist' carefully and with thought. The truth is that there are steadily-growing similarities between what the Republican party is saying and doing and the rise of the fascist parties to dictatorial power in both Germany and Italy. They trouble me greatly, and have since they were more of the fringe than the core of the party machine. From the scapegoating, the fear-mongering, all the way to the call for investigation into anti-American members of Congress. There should be grave concern, not about negative campaigns, per se, because it's a long-standing American tradition to call your oponent's ideas wrong-headed and downright stupid, but about the content involved in reaching for this type of negativity. It is demagoguery and inflames a very dangerous sort of right-wing extremism.

For anyone interested, here is the full version of the interview session Veks's post above shows in part:

[youtube=425,344][/youtube]

Offline The OverlordTopic starter

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2008, 11:36:12 PM »
It's refreshing to hear someone with (admittedly prior) standing in the Republican party standing up against the current fascist tone the party has been taking.

And yes, as an historian, I use the word 'fascist' carefully and with thought. The truth is that there are steadily-growing similarities between what the Republican party is saying and doing and the rise of the fascist parties to dictatorial power in both Germany and Italy. They trouble me greatly, and have since they were more of the fringe than the core of the party machine. From the scapegoating, the fear-mongering, all the way to the call for investigation into anti-American members of Congress. There should be grave concern, not about negative campaigns, per se, because it's a long-standing American tradition to call your oponent's ideas wrong-headed and downright stupid, but about the content involved in reaching for this type of negativity. It is demagoguery and inflames a very dangerous sort of right-wing extremism.




The attempt of a Minnesota congressman to examine congressmen to see who is pro-American and who is not.

And by what standards do we determine who is 'pro-American' and how exactly do we define this term? This shit stinks like McCarthyism.

I never used to think this way, but in a post-911 environment, giving some of these extremists an early retirement with a few ounces of lead sounds more like a viable option these days.

Offline NightBird

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2008, 12:13:20 AM »
The attempt of a Minnesota congressman to examine congressmen to see who is pro-American and who is not.

And by what standards do we determine who is 'pro-American' and how exactly do we define this term? This shit stinks like McCarthyism.

I never used to think this way, but in a post-911 environment, giving some of these extremists an early retirement with a few ounces of lead sounds more like a viable option these days.


It stinks like McCarthyism because it essentially is McCarthyism, and my mother, who was an adult during that time, immediately said so (we were watching the TV show on which the statment was made). The inability to let go of the Cold War (and its pre-WWII predecessor, the Red Scare) is the source of the outcries of socialism over eliminating the Dubya-era tax cuts on the wealthiest and offering a stimulus package to kickstart the demand side of the economy, thus the 'income redistribution' issue to which Powell capably refers. Given the state of our bridges, our sewers, our national parks, our highways, and our manufacturing base, I think some 'redistribution' out of the hands of those who are abusing the system, now as in the decades leading up to 1929, and into the hands of those who will reinvigorate production more than the stock market is necessary to move us ot of the debacle in which we've landed thanks to Republican-sponsored greed, now as in the decades leading up to 1929. Just as a thought, it's also income redistribution to take tax money from the middle class and give it to the bank shareholders, but it's only 'bad redistribution' when the direction of funds isn't from the bottom to the top, no matter how much of the purchasing base is strangled in the process. Here's an interesting article about how capitalism-supportive demand-side economics can be: Part 1 & Part 2.

[/slight shift off-topic]

Offline The OverlordTopic starter

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2008, 04:58:50 AM »





And the thing that really creeps me out is that we've got this new flareup with Russia and scare-mongering of a revived Cold War. Since we've proven several times over that we can pretty much spank any conventional army in a standup fight, oh looky here we have Islamic enemies knocking on our gates that fight just as dirty as we did in our revolution against the British, and now we've got to retool to fight low-intensity covert actions.

Well, there was that spyplane incident with China that went down about the same time that Bin-Laden was working out his vacation plans for September 11, but we sell each other so much shit I guess we're friends with China afterall.

And then there's Uzbekistan; in a perverse irony of the Cold War that must have left Kruzchev doing cartwheels in his grave better than the best Soviet-era gymnasts, we launch into Afghanistan from the very same staging point they used. Lorded over by this creep Karimov who has a horrific track record of boiling and torturing his own people, so we can go in and fight crazies armed with the very weapons we gave them to fight the Soviets back in the 80’s...*sigh.

So then a few years later we take Iraq...hmm, let's review the map, shall we? I'd say they both make a nice little strategic vise to crush Iran in if we needed to. Coincidence? Hmmmm.

Plus if Russia gets cocky again we have a nice blade poised at the bear's balls...just in case things get worse.

Oh but wait it does gets worse...Russia just might have a bug up its ass again so now we need more carrier battle groups, we need to double the size of the SAC, yada yada.

Not to mention the fact that we still hold a WMD arsenal so vast that we can still choose to scorch all our enemies on our way out, even if they do manage to bring us down. The comparisons to the Roman Empire end here, because Rome never had hydrogen bombs to poison the wells.


And all those trillions in defense spending have taken up the largest slice of our GNP of all nations on Earth, and we can't stop now, because China is catching up in that department. Just in case. What a fracked up little tangled web this is.

Well after all, we have to have a nemesis. What's the iron triangle and their media flunkies to do without one?

And as the axiom says, an Empire has to expand in order to survive…I think the past two presidential terms are making more sense now.



All the more reason to install someone in the White House who's not in their camp...and Johnny boy, you ain't him.  >:(

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2008, 12:18:31 PM »
I was thinking we have $11 Trillion Dollars of debt and nothing to show for it, sad. As for our defense we don't have a good defense - we are great at blowing up buildings and killing people but have nothing like a viable missle defense system which would make a difference.

The good news is with our massive WMD arsenal no one would be stupid enough with enough missles to hurt us seriously, to attack us. China and Russia are more economic threats due our national debt than a military one.

Offline NightBird

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2008, 11:22:02 PM »
I was thinking we have $11 Trillion Dollars of debt and nothing to show for it, sad. As for our defense we don't have a good defense - we are great at blowing up buildings and killing people but have nothing like a viable missle defense system which would make a difference.

The good news is with our massive WMD arsenal no one would be stupid enough with enough missles to hurt us seriously, to attack us. China and Russia are more economic threats due our national debt than a military one.

I wish I could agree with you that no one would be that stupid. Things done for faith trump good sense on a routine basis in the history of the human race.

And Overlord... capably, if depressingly summarized. I find it no coincidence that cold warriors have been the power behind that famous desk in the Oval Office. They really don't know any other way to govern... even to live or die. Add in the renewal of race tensions that I never thought really ever went away, and... gods, it's ugly. We can only hope that the nation won't be fooled, but even my sister listens to talk radio and got into an argument with me over it all. Ignorance is McCain's greatest asset.

Offline Moondazed

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Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #11 on: October 20, 2008, 11:28:34 PM »
Even with sites like factcheck.org, which documents it's sources, making it clear that the man lies regularly *sigh*  I pointed my brother to factcheck.org and he didn't even look at it, claiming that everything has a partisan bias.  I'm afraid I got a tad frustrated and made a disparaging comment about him being too lazy to bother looking at the facts and thinking for himself :)

Offline Trieste

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Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2008, 11:10:19 AM »
So yeah .. Colin Powell.

Offline Moondazed

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Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2008, 12:46:40 PM »
Sorry for the off topic post :)

Offline Mathim

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2008, 05:07:38 PM »
McCain ought to really just shock the world by dropping out of the race now and letting Obama run unopposed. That way all the people who are going to throw their votes away on third-party candidates won't let McCain get a foothold like in the 2000 election with Gore and Bush.

Offline Moondazed

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Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #15 on: October 21, 2008, 05:08:43 PM »
As if the GOP would allow something so sensible and selfless.

*pinching myself for responding to an off-topic post*

Offline Mathim

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #16 on: October 21, 2008, 05:17:01 PM »
That is surprising, though, Powell doing something like this. I'd always hated his guts for being on Bush's side about everything way back when things first started. If this helps put Obama in the White House, I'll be halfway to forgiving him.

Offline The OverlordTopic starter

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #17 on: October 21, 2008, 11:52:30 PM »
That is surprising, though, Powell doing something like this. I'd always hated his guts for being on Bush's side about everything way back when things first started. If this helps put Obama in the White House, I'll be halfway to forgiving him.

Most people tend not to get out on their podium and criticize their boss while they're still working for him. Now that Powell isn't a part of that regime, perhaps he's finally speaking his mind. He wouldn't be the first ex-cabinet to do a turnabout.

Offline The OverlordTopic starter

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #18 on: October 21, 2008, 11:55:23 PM »
McCain ought to really just shock the world by dropping out of the race now and letting Obama run unopposed. That way all the people who are going to throw their votes away on third-party candidates won't let McCain get a foothold like in the 2000 election with Gore and Bush.

I'm still convinced that's GOP propaganda, that all the undecided took votes only from the Dems in '04. That's just an attempt to pull bullshit over the eyes and I'd need some rock hard facts from a reputable source to believe it to be anything other than mythology.

Bush won four years ago becuase the conservative right was stupid enough to reelect him.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 11:56:47 PM by The Overlord »

Offline Moondazed

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Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #19 on: October 22, 2008, 12:44:28 AM »
Or perhaps it was a bit of clever political spin, involving the 'horror' of gay marriage *eyes rolling*

*smacking myself about the head and shoulders for not staying on topic*

Offline The OverlordTopic starter

Re: Colin Powell endorses Barack Obama for president
« Reply #20 on: October 22, 2008, 03:42:06 AM »
Or perhaps it was a bit of clever political spin, involving the 'horror' of gay marriage *eyes rolling*

*smacking myself about the head and shoulders for not staying on topic*


Ugh, don't remind me...I had to check myself more than once to not go off at family gatherings on cousins that fell for that stupidity. >:(