A Voice Of Reason

Say what you will about Colin Powell’s endorsement of Barack Obama, I was inspired by it. In particular, I was inspired by his talk about the need for more tolerance of different religions. This part just made me jump for joy:

"Well, the correct answer is, he is not a Muslim, he’s a Christian.
He’s always been a Christian," he said. "But the really right answer
is, what if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this
country? The answer’s no, that’s not America. Is there something wrong
with some seven-year-old Muslim-American kid believing that he or she
could be president? Yet, I have heard senior members of my own party
drop the suggestion, ‘He’s a Muslim and he might be associated
terrorists.’ This is not the way we should be doing it in America."

I’ve done a lot of travelling since 9/11 and I am always amazed how people of different dress and skin color get treated. It’s like anyone who is not white and christian is a potential terrorist. That’s what 9/11 did to our country and it has been extremely hurtful to our country and our culture.

So I applaud Colin Powell for his forthright and honest and correct remarks. America is the melting pot where we accept all races, creeds, and colors. It’s what has made us great and if we walk away from that, we are in big trouble. Colin Powell knows that, Barack Obama knows that, and by the way so does John McCain but the only way he wins at this point is by playing into those fears which he is doing and Colin Powell called him on it.

I am very hopeful for what may be around the corner, a new administration, a new world view, a new tolerance, and some healing finally.

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Comments (Archived):

  1. NYCStartupfiend


  2. S.t

    General Poweel says his endorsement of Obama ‘isn’t about race’.A few things**Rush Limbaughs asked, “Where are the inexperienced, white liberals Powell has endorsed?”**Powell insists that Obama ‘has always been Christian’. Really? What religion was Obama BEFORE Rev. Wright baptized him? (When he studied the Quoran as a schoolboy in Indonesia, Obama was registered as a muslim)**Powell – “Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country?” (No, except when it comes time to pick a side in a fight. When that time comes, you’re prob’ly gonna rely on what you were taught when you were young — that the enemy is everyone who doesn’t follow islam.)

    1. S.t

      I think George Will said today “If Obama was a white man, Powell would not have made the endorsement.”

      1. fredwilson

        That’s his opinionI don’t share it

    2. Dan T

      My father was catholic and migrated from Ireland when he was a teen. I was baptized Catholic. If I were running for office and you disagreed with my opinions would you try and associate me with the IRA and bombings?I am not interested in what McCain or Obama did when they were 6 to 8 years old – unless it’s a funny story.

      1. S.t

        Obama was baptized in 1988 by Rev Wright. His was around 27.(& if you ever ran for prime minister of Great Britain, they’d prob’ly have a problem with your past associations with known, unrepentent terrorists)

        1. brooksjordan

          @S.tIt would be great if you could link to your website or blog so we can see who you are or at least use your real name.

          1. S.t

            All’s I know is that William Ayers (the Timothy McVeigh/Ted Kaczynski of his day) has dreamed about Barack Obama his whole life.

        2. rah33ls

          so does that mean the royals would be abolished because of their links with the Nazi regime :)…If obama was taking on mccain in a uk election he’d already be on his way to 10 Downing St.

          1. Mark

            hey smart guy, the royals aren’t elected and they don’t live at 10 downing. and by the way, a lot of people in the UK think the monarchy should be abolished. either way, the analogy doesn’t work, not to mention the fact that its a gross generalization of a misinformed assumption.

          2. rah33ls

            mark, flattery will get you nowhere 🙂 – besides, your admiratioN is somewhat undeserved. being an englishman and born in merry ole’ london town, (somehow), the workings of my country’s electoral process and monarch had escaped me. inexcusablethks for pointing out my ommission.Twice. **coughs**thks for ur comment 😉

      2. S.t

        just a guy in his neighborhood…? Really?Barack Obama once gave a glowing endorsement of a book by former domestic terrorist William Ayers and was mentioned by name in the book itself.http://elections.foxnews.co

    3. garthwalker

      1) In his endorsement Powell talked about specific reasons he choose to endorse Obama. Limbaugh’s question is utterly irrelevant. You are choosing to ignore the real reasons that Powell feels abandoned by his party and their candidate.. why not talk about that???2) This just reinforce the point that inspired Fred, that religion SHOULDn’t matter…3) “what you were taught when you were young — that the enemy is everyone who doesn’t follow islam.” I could say the same thing about Christianity using the crusades as an example, but I think these types of statements are inherently unfair as violent acts use religion as an excuse, not the other way around.

    4. Firas

      I’m sorry? I wasn’t taught that. You make me nauseous. Tell me whose side all those American Muslim soldiers who died in combat theaters were on?

    5. fredwilson

      spell his name right and we might pay more attention to your right wing rhetoric s.t.

  3. rah33ls

    powerful stuff by powell…said w/ steady logic and emotion, like i’ve never heard, and didn’t drop a beat.

  4. Satish

    I would have really admired Colin Powell if he came out a year ago and said he supported Obama for what he thought Obama could do for the country. I see Colin Powell just as I see Bill Richardson – a guy who would come out for Obama only when he knew Obama would win.

  5. brooksjordan

    The part where Powell talked about the mother who was leaning over her son’s grave, a son who was 14 when 9/11 happened, and inspired by that had waited until he could enlist, really stood out for me.That Muslim boy, now a young man in his grave, loved his country one presumes as much as any other American . . .

  6. kenberger

    Catch the movie ‘W’. It depicts Powell as the ONLY voice of reason in the 21st century executive cabinet. Almost explicitly leading the viewer to “he shoulda run for president”.

    1. nabeel

      Powell ultimately was complicit in the trumped up WMD, and I have heard more than once from close people that the reason is he has a true soldier’s mentality to follow his commanding officer. That may make him a great soldier, and still an honorable man — but it makes for a terrible President and I’m glad he didn’t run.

      1. Karen E

        Well said, Nabeel.

  7. S.t

    You’re all aware that Powell talked the first President Bush out of ‘finishing the job’ (killing Saddam) in Desert Storm, right?& you’re all aware that both Powell and Obama thought McCain’s SURGE would not succeed. In fact, they both thought it ‘would do the opposite’, right?

    1. rah33ls

      i love it when operations – tactics is confused w/ strategy …even the staffers at the weekly standard agree that the surge was a PR stunt and MUCH more than boots on the ground

    2. EricaJoy

      …and we all see what good killing Saddam did, don’t we. Anyhow, we had no good reason to after Iraq or Saddam this time (proven time and time again) so the “fact” that Powell talked Bush out of “finishing the job” is irrelevant.

    3. Sethop

      I still can’t get over how many people still think the addition of another 30,000 US troops actually had anything to do with the decrease in the fighting. It didn’t.http://www.tapsns.com/blog/

      1. garthwalker

        @ S.t. You throw some nonsense up here, we shoot it down, you throw some more up, we shoot it down again. I think there are a few valid arguments out there to make in favor of McCain, but you are not even close.

        1. Richard Krueger

          To S.t. – Powell and Bush senior were correct in not going into Baghdad to “finish the job.” If you remember at the time, the job was to drive Iraqi’s out of Kuwait. And that was accomplished. If only George Jr. had as much sense as Powell and his pappa to not remove Saddam from power. They understood the power vacuum it would create in the region and that Iran would quickly move to fill that void. And if you really think the surge has worked, then you’re probably willing to drink any coolaid this administration pours for you. Fortunately, according to recent polls, it seems the American public has had enough. McCain, like most politicians, has good intentions. It’s the lengths he’s gone to in order to justify the means that is turning off American voters.

          1. S.t

            Just last night, Senator Biden guaranteed that if Senator Obama is elected, we will have an international crisis to test America’s new President…But I thought that if Obama becomes president then the rest of the world will love us again? Why would they want to hurt us if The Messiah is our leader?

      2. Mark

        Oh really? And you’re qualified to make that comment? You atteneded the Army War College? You’re a Foreign Service Officer? Surely, you serve in some official capacity that allows for a level of information to make such a bold, generalized assessment? No???? Oh, wait … I see … you link to a partisan blog where other unqualified commenters make assessments they have no business making. *That’s* where you get your “expert” information. Wow, we should put you up for National Security Advisor.(Should’ve put “my opinion is that …” on this one too).

        1. Sethop

          Mmmm, no, that wasn’t really a partisan blog. Mark runs the Strategic News Service, and he gets paid an awful lot of money by some of the world’s top executives to essentially tell them what’s going to happen in the next year or two. He may not know everything, but his predictions do turn out to be right in a remarkable number of cases. If you think he’s wrong about this particular matter, I encourage you to do your own research, and I don’t mean by watching Faux News. I could give you some other pointers but I’m sure whatever other commentary/analysis I point you to you would also call “partisan” because they’re not spinning things the same way McCain and Bush are.Ok, I guess the truth is no one will ever know if Sadr even had it in the back of his mind that another 30k US troops might be arriving soon when he decided to call a ceasefire, but it seems unlikely that it was the most important factor in his decision. It also seems clear that the Sunni Awakening in Anbar had nothing to do with the Surge, because it got underway months beforehand. So far as I know, no-one is denying that it was those two things that accounted for the sudden decrease in the violence, so the only real question is whether the 30k more US troops had anything to do with either, and on the face of it, I would say there is little reason to believe that it did, apart from assertions on the part of people who have a vested interest in other people believing that they got it right. Remember that the Petraeus report was actually written by White House staff, and merely *delivered* by Petraeus.Hence, the success of “The Surge” is one of those cases where if you assert something often enough and loud enough, people start believing it. It worked with the supposed WMD…and are you one of those people who believed McCain when he said over and over again “The fundamentals of our economy are strong”?I have no real intent on arguing the point with you. If you want to ignore what I have to say, please do. This is, after all, a blog comments section, not the New York Times.

          1. S.t

            like when Harry Reid said ‘the war is lost’, or when Obama said the he thought The Surge ‘would do the opposite’; or when Murtha said ‘I will not excuse murder and that what’s happened’?Or when all these Democrats LIED about Saddam’s WMDs with these Words of Mass Destruction?http://www.snopes.com/polit

          2. josh guttman

            In their next release, let’s get disqus to add a feature that enables blocking by ip address:)

          3. S.t

            Ya mean like a ‘fairness doctrine’ for the web? Or just another way for lefties to suppress free speech? That’d be like some sort of Liberal Fascism, right? That sounds great.

          4. Sethop

            You probably saw my spiel about never being able to claim victory, well I’m not sure if you can claim loss either, but blowing your nations credibility and an estimated 3 trillion dollars[1] without increasing your nation’s safety one iota [2] probably counts as “losing”. The Surge *would* have failed if it wasn’t for those two things I mentioned, I think everyone was right to be skeptical. I don’t think you can say it succeeded just because it happened at the same time as those other two things, without proving a causal link between the two. I’m sorry if this is all too complicated for you, I understand your brain is overloaded on RNC talking points and there probably isn’t much room left in there for rational thought processes.On the other hand, that’s a good list. I’d forgotten how dumb some of the Democrats were about this stuff at times. However I would say that for every stupid thing a Democrat politician said about Saddam’s WMD you could find 10 even more stupid things said by a Republican politician. And you had to parse some of it carefully – everyone knows that Saddam had chemical weapons, and actually used them in the past, but those things have use-by dates. In the end there was a lot of dodgy intel, and some people got fooled. The thing is, there were many more Republicans who *wanted* to get fooled, and a lot more Repulicans doing the fooling, in particular, the OSP at the pentagon. [3][1] for the calculations see the book on this by Stiglitz, one of the world’s top economists.[2] http://www.atimes.com/atime…[3] http://www.newyorker.com/ar

  8. kenberger

    Couldn’t agree more. Interesting that he waited till nearly last-minute to come forward. Calculated, deliberate, and effective.Reminds me of sniping an Ebay auction.

  9. Mark

    Oh, so *that’s* what 9/11 “did” to this country????? That’s quite a statement.

    1. S.t

      Blame America First

  10. Satish

    May be this comment is not relevant to this blog but ………. Im very socially liberal, economically conservative in my policy positions, with a belief that govt needs to provide for education, health care, food for children coming from lower income families to level the playing field for the kids. So Im not a a Bush Supporter. But Im astonished by the perception of Bush as the worst president ever and dumb etc etc. Its a shocker that not one article is written about the fact that in the last couple of years there have been bombings in different countries in Europe and lots in India and other parts of the world. There have been NONE in the US. Bush has done something towards that. BUSH took steps to improve education with the No Child Left Behind. It didn’t work out as expected but isn’t that the way things work in every area. You take a first step, see what works and what doesn’t and then fix it. And the more I read about it the Dems had a lot to do with the economic crisis. Bush and the repubs were crying out since 2003 that Fannie and Freedie and the mortgages to low income families was going to screw the system. It was the Dems who talked openly against regulation and Barney Frank laughed it off in 2006 when Repubs and even McCain brought it to the banking and finance committees. I just feel that because of the Iraq war these is completely one sided media coverage and that is what is a big problem. There is really no true discussion and responsibility. Just PR wars.

    1. andyswan

      This is the same group that actually stood on the floor of the United States Senate and declared that the United States had LOST an ongoing war.Destroying Bush, regardless of the consequences for the Country, has been the ONLY objective of the Left since being beaten in the 2000 election.

      1. fredwilson

        Bush has done a fine job of destroying his reputation and approval ratingsall by himself

        1. andyswan

          Of course….and so has congress. The new marketing is “destroy your opponent”…..and everyone is successful! Neat.

        2. Satish

          There are two thing Bush has done badly – Go to war in Iraq and the way hurricane Katrina was handled. But the fact that is being ignored is that the real power in this country lies with the congress and senate. The pres only has as much power as the congress and senate give him/her. And right now everything is being blamed on BUSH. The Obama campaign and Pelosi etc are blaming everything on BUSH including the econimic crisis. The real culprits in this are the Dems. The Dems have not done a single thing to help the country the last 3 years in congress. They have been focussed on making things worse so that they can win this presidential election. And the only one being held responsible is Bush. All the dem congressmen and senators need to be thrown out too.

          1. andyswan

            Exactly right Satish….this is why it is so important that Obama win this election.If we’re going to get more big-government failures enacted (Social Security, Welfare, Medicare, “Affordable Housing”, and next up “Health Care” and “Fairness taxing”), they should at least be laid at the feet of the proper figurehead.

          2. Satish

            I came to this country from India hoping for a better political system. In India a majority of politicians are uneducated, its run by goons – educated people stay away from politics. It was such a huge thing when a Manmohan Singh became the Prime Minister of India because he was a scholar. Since a majority of politicians in the US are extremely well educated and are mosty successful in life before they step into politics I had extremely high expectations. This election cycle and the way Bush has run the country the last 8 years (Ive been in the US since 2000) has made me disilusioned with the system. I though the Dems were different but the way Nancy Pelosi and the congress have behaved has made me feel like crap. 🙂 I’m tired of this partisan bickering. I want some centrist policies that help a majority of the people. I want real leadership before I give up on the political system. I want the govt to create an environment where talented people can succeed and make this country a place where talented people all over the world look to as the place to realize their potential.

          3. S.t

            The response to Katrina was deplorable, especially President Bush’s inability to remove the impotent Gov Blanco during the crisis.Regime change in Iraq became the official policy of the US when the president signed the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998 http://en.wikipedia.org/wik…Choosing Iraq as the battlefield to wage the Global War on Terror will be looked upon as strategic genius by President Bush.

          4. John M.

            Strategic Genius and George Bush in the same sentence? You lost me and 75% of American’s there. History will show Iraq was the path of least resistance, with Americans blinded by 9/11 emotions, not some complex chess move by Cheney and Rove.

          5. Hayk

            There is no such thing as wrong, not in the context you mention at least. Bush has done what his predecessors have been doing since 1970s. Nixon, Reagan, Clinton, Bush Sr. had all ardently pursued and keenly acted on core precepts of Milton Friedman’s legacy – the shock doctrine. Think invasions and subsequent economic “robbery” of Central and Latin American countries such as Nicaragua and Guatemala.Also think policies implemented by IMF and World Bank – neocon cronies – for Asian countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand in the second half of 1990s.What Bush did? He went along. He twisted and warped the entire Republican ideology into something completely unrecognizable and alien to what it must have been originally. Why Bush Jr. has one of the lowest approval rankings? Because America happened to have 9/11, Katrina, Iraq, Afghanistan and the current credit crunch during his stance and because he handled all those with less determination, less intention and less knowledge than those who came before him. In other words, he attracted spotlight because of unhappy match of grave events and his inability to act upon them accordingly.That is all.

      2. Sethop

        Who exactly are you putting into this box you label “the Left”? Are you aware that by the standards of the rest of the Anglosphere, the Democratic and Republican parties are rated center-right on both the economic and social dimensions? I think even when you distinguish between these two somewhat-independent dimensions it’s still pretty daft to try and ascribe blanket characteristics or motivations to *any* large group of people.For that matter, even describing the Iraq mess as a “war” is almost as bad as talking about the “War on terror”. My opinion is that in order to have a “war” you ought to be able to define (a) who the enemy is, and (b) what counts as victory, *without* using hopelessly abstract or vague terms, and without changing your answer on a yearly basis. Going to war with a *country* sort of makes sense, you at least then have some people who can say “we surrender” and cause the fighting to stop. But who is going to say “we surrender” in Iraq such that the US can delcare “victory”? It’s almost, but not quite as hopeless a situation as the “War on Terror”. By getting the US citizens to (mostly) accept that they are in a “war” that cannot in fact ever be won, the military industrial complex has achieved a near infinite supply of sweet, sweet cash, courtesy of the taxpayer. I wish President Obama luck in fighting that meme and that machine. He’ll need it.

        1. Mark

          Hey Von Clausewitz, thanks for the philosophy on war, but I’m not sure you’re qualified to make such claims.

          1. Sethop

            Hmmm. Which part of “my opinion is that” did you fail to understand?

        2. andyswan

          When I say “the Left”, I am talking about the (growing) fringe of theDemocratic Party. Socialists hiding behind faux populist causes designed todistract from their core beliefs, which are wildly unpopular andunsellable. I agree that most of this country and most of both parties is”center-right”.As far as the Iraq War goes….it was a war. It lasted about for 3 weeks ofpure domination, and it was over with US victory once Saddam’s regime wasout of power, caught/dead and our troops militarily controlled the country.Since then, we’ve been occupiers, attempting to prevent civil-war andchaos. Of course, you wouldn’t know this from the Bush administration, whofoolishly decided that instead of shooting straight with the Americanpeople, it was more beneficial to label this as an “ongoing war” that we”cannot afford to lose”….essentially sacrificing an already-earned”victory” in order to provide cover for the huge post-war miscalculationsthat exposed their true sin: hastiness.I agree 100% that the “War on Terror” is not a war, and that it thereforecannot be “won”…..it is a security effort that I would have troublenaming….but one that is working exceptionally well.If you want to have some fun….go back and read NYT articles from 2001 orearly 2002 about what it would take to declare success for Bush in terms ofdealing with terrorism. Then read what those same people are writing today,despite their seemingly audacious benchmarks being surpassed.You’ll see my point: Some people quite simply cannot utter the words”George Bush has been effective at _________” (keeping citizens safe fromterrorist attack), regardless of the reality. It’s ALL political, and itALL goes back to the hate grown out of the 2000 defeat of Al Gore.

          1. Guest

            “George Bush has been effective at _________ destroying America.”There was this terrible pandemic, the Spanish Flu, that killed millions of people. How? Was the virus destroying some vital organs? Was it having a paralyzing effect for some important bodily function? What made it more dangerous than a regular winter flu? Nothing! Just a regular flu. Except that, for some reason, it was eliciting an incompetent immune overreaction in most people. People were dying not from the virus but from the excessive fever that their immune system would activate.Al Qaeda was the Spanish Flu in America that made an incompetent Administration go haywire…

          2. andyswan

            Stupid analogy unless you are saying the World Trade Centers being destroyed were not effective attacks on America’s vital organs.Don’t let the effectiveness of the response impact your assesment of the threat’s severity post de facto.It’s like saying racism must not have really been a big of a deal during the civil rights movement because here we are a generation later with a black President. Nonsense.

          3. Guest

            yes, terrible, dramatic, traumatic disaster but not really “life-threatening” (same for Katrina, btw)This country used to have real powerful enemies that WERE existential threats: the Nazis, the Soviets. Yet America won these while preserving its identity. What happened? How can a group of ragtag militants can instill so much fear in people like Andyswan to the point where they feel like they have to defend the most disastrous president in history? I don’t get it…

          4. andyswan

            I don’t defend GW Bush, but the man is FAR from the worst President in history. Hell, he’s not even the worst President since 1976.I don’t defend the Patriot Act and I don’t defend the post-victory Iraq occupation. I am aware of the threats facing the US, and I am quite concerned that under an Obama Presidency, very early on in it, we will be shown exactly how effective it was to have a powerful, forward-leaning stance in the world for the last 7 years.Joe Biden said as much today……

          5. Guest

            but, andy, the U.S. has over 50% of the world’s military spending and our allies account for another 40%. I am sure there will be provocations from some rogues, as Biden said, but you swat those away like mosquitoes. Measured, rational response to serious but not existential threats is what I expect from Obama. Not this overextended, delusional and incompetent “stance” of the last 7 years.

          6. andyswan

            Ok….we can agree to disagree and agree to see what happens. I have a feeling Iran, Al-queda, Syria, Venezula, Cuba and Russia have a preferred candidate….I hope you are right…..I REALLY do….this isn’t about party as right now I have no party. 🙂

          7. oliver

            “core beliefs, which are wildly unpopular and unsellable”.I think when it comes to health care it is the other way around. A majority of Americans are in favor of a simple and transparent nationalized health care system as they see it functioning over in Australia, Europe or Canada. Just Google for “poll americans socialized health care” for numerous examples. The fact that the democratic party comes up with a half-assed solution shows they are pandering to the center-right wing voter which is afraid socialized health care will lead to communism (like it has in the rest of the world?). I therefore disagree with your statement that “most of this country and most of both parties is center-right”, but admit that Americans have been swallowing the red-scare poppycock for decades.

          8. andyswan

            If a “majority of Americans are in favor” of it, then why does theDemocratic party need to dilute it in order to “pander to the center-rightwing”?Call me “red-scared”, but I don’t want the same people that run SocialSecurity, Medicare, Walter Reed, Public Schools, Congress, WIC, PublicHousing, the IRS, the Commerce Department, and TSA running healthcare.Silly, I know.

          9. oliver

            Concerning the first question: You are the type of voter they’re pandering to. Not that you *personally* are convinced to vote Dem, but in order to win swing states, convincing some of the voters that are afraid of a healthcare system that is run as ____ (fill in badly run government initiative here) helps. That, plus the lobbying by companies that have seen their healthcare benefits balloon, and would like the government to foot the bill from now on. As an aside: You should look into the basic public-private system continental european countries have in place–it’s quite different from the British NHS system and should offer a good compromise. It basically involves the insurance part being non-profit, but the health care provision side being mostly privatized (apart from the academic hospitals).

          10. andyswan

            I have no problem voting Dem. I have a problem with ceding my liberty tothe Federal Government in exchange for a benefit that I am fully capable ofachieving on my own. I do understand that there are some people (5% orless) who are not capable of this, and it is one of my life missions to helpthose people…..I just come from a school of thought that says charity ismost effective, most efficient, and most accountable when it comes at thelocal, micro level.I think it’s incredulous to assume that because someone is not willing to goalong with Socialist-lite solutions, that they are 1) uncaring, 2) ignorant,3) overly religious or 4) scared.Most of “Red America” is an AMAZING place to live and raise a family. Thekind of place where you want to be if you get a flat tire.We want the Government to protect our freedoms and leave us alone. That’swhat happens when you grow up around people who grow the world’s food, killtheir own meat and build their own homes. Oh, and by the way….we driveSUVs because they fit our larger bodies and larger families better! :)It’s high time both sides of these debates started recognizing thehonorable, intelligent positions of the other….because the reality is thatour GOALS are often identical…we just disagree on process.

          11. fredwilson

            AndyI think its the anti-libertarian desires of the right to force their ‘family values’ on the rest of us that has caused a lot of this resentment of red states in my worldI don’t want the values of christian conservatives to make it so that my daughter can’t get an abortion or my children can’t find a life partner of the same sex if that’s what they choose to do.Its funny that the ‘stay out of my life’ mantra works for money issues but not for social issuesIf the conservative movement would drop that line of thinking, I think they’d be right back in the majority in this countryFred

          12. andyswan

            I agree…..and there are mirrored problems on the Left….which, combined, will hopefully give us 1-2 holes for alternate parties to gain some traction inside of!!!

          13. fredwilson

            I’ll run with you andy anytime!

  11. Shottsie Kaylor

    With all the events falling to favor Obama and the Democrats this time around, Obama should be way ahead which he’s not. This shows the electorate has great doubts about this man as president of U.S.A. They know he’s not qualified in the least or he is qualified the least to be president. At best he’s a socialist and at worst, he worse than that!

  12. Shottsie Kaylor

    Colin Powell hasn’t been so right on with his decisions either. So why should his endorsement mean anything? McCain has other former military generals and high government officials with the experience endorsing him also. McCain is the man for this time.

    1. fredwilson

      it was the explanation of why he made the decision which was so inspiring. an endorsement doesn’t mean much to me, but his words this morning on meet the press were very persausive.

      1. Sethop

        Yep. When I first heard about the endorsement I thought, well, that’s nice. When I actually bothered to listen to the interview, I was seriously impressed.

  13. mark

    “It’s like anyone who is not white and christian is a potential terrorist. “Who are you talking about with that very broad generalization?

    1. fredwilson

      the TSA

      1. mark

        How do they know if I am Christian when I am just standing in line at the airport? Must be some new technology in the scanners I have not heard about……

        1. Sadness

          It’s an old technology that’s called “reading”. They apply that old technology to the centuries-old tradition of human’s using “names”.Try changing your name to Mohammad Usaama Khan, make your skin brown-ish (if it’s not already), your hair black (if it’s not already) and then see what happens. For bonus points, travel into the US from “overseas” at JFK.

  14. Guest

    Excellent post!Even though McCain doesn’t have the IQ, the judgement and the skills to lead the country in these times, I agree with Fred that he is a decent and tolerant person. Let’s not forget that John McCain had the honor and testicular fortitude to break away from his party’s line, with all this ugliness: illegal detention of Arab-Americans, torture, concentration camps. Fred is right, the country has moved on; it happened during the primaries, when McCain got the nomination instead of Romney.Some people forget that Mitt Romney was the real agent of intolerance and hatred. Take a look at this video, this is the closest thing to Goebels as any American politician has ever been (including the concentration camp fetish):http://www.youtube.com/watc…You have to credit the collective genius of the American people here. Romney had the money, the organization and the institutional support (Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, The National Review), yet the voters soundly rejected his hate-mongering.I am as pro-Obama as they come, however, the more neurotic elements on the Left need to check their anti-McCain rhetoric a bit. Despite all the cheeky electoral innuendo, neither Palin nor McCain has been as overtly fascist as Mitt Romney. In fact during the debates McCain was again very explicit on his anti-torture views. There is a danger that we may cheapen the value of outrage, and when the next time some true hater like Romney comes along we all will be suffering from “outrage fatigue”…

  15. obamasupporter

    Thanks a lot for sharing this. I saw “Meet the Press” as I always do Sunday morning, and got goosebumps when I heard that. I loved it, and its about time someone it so eloquently. We are a melting pot of great cultures and it should be embraced rather than shunned. Cheers!

  16. Mark

    One other thing, Mr Wilson … your comment makes it sound as if McCain is a part of the rumors that Obama is Muslim. Powell’s comments do too. McCain has repeatedly called out his own supporters denouncing these rumors.

    1. fredwilson

      Listen to the McCain’s robocalls and then get back to me on whether he’scomplicit in this or not

      1. Mark

        Give me one call (or anything official) that comes from the *campaign* saying Obama is Muslim (or questioning his religion in any way) and I’ll concede. Not some PAC or other group but McCain’s campaign where he is required to endorse it (by his own legislation with Feingold).

        1. Guest

          Both Palin and McCain are probably complicit, however, we need to be measured, since both of them have distanced themselves officially. At worst they are guilty of electoral shenanigans, (saying one thing and doing another), which likely won’t work. Compare this to the outright, unabashed hate-mongering of Mitt Romney and you’ll see why we have to be careful in the “outrage” department…

      2. andyswan

        Here’s the text of a typical John McCain robo call: ‘Hello. I’m calling for John McCain and the RNC because you need to know that Barack Obama has worked closely with domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, whose organization bombed the U.S. capitol, the Pentagon, a judge’s home and killed Americans,’ the recorded message said. ‘And Democrats will enact an extreme leftist agenda if they take control of Washington. Barack Obama and his Democratic allies lack the judgment to lead our country.’I have yet to see robo call text that “accuses” or “suggests” Obama is Muslim.

        1. fredwilson

          It suggests that he is a terroristThe implication is ³muslim terrorist² and the scary thing is there arepeople out there who believe itSheese!

          1. andyswan

            By that logic, Obama is suggesting that McCain IS Bush. You tell me which is worse in this political environment 🙂

          2. fredwilson

            He did vote with Bush 90+ pcnt of the time. As far as I know obama didn’t hang out with former terrorists 90pcnt of the time

          3. S.t

            It suggests that Obama would be just as chummy with Mohamed Atta-types as he is with William Ayers.He can’t differentiate.Fred – it’s not a ‘Obama-was-born-a-muslim’-knock; it’s a knock that Obama couldn’t even get high-level security clearance b/c he’d fail the background check — ya know, the ‘hanging around with known terrorists’-thing sets alarm bells off…When asked during the primary debate, Obama seemed pretty giddy that he really might get to meet the leader of Iran (oh, boy. can I really meet him?!). But he shrunk to about this small when asked when he would meet Gen’l Petraeus.How does he get past this:””I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same…”?????

          4. fredwilson

            I don’t worry about itBecause I pal around with former terrorists too StI am not kidding. My kids go to a lefty school that has a number of formerterrorists as alumsI guess you shouldn’t be reading this blog

  17. Gossamer Web

    If a “new world view” includes not supporting our best allies in our own hemisphere (Columbia),at a critical moment in history when there’s a communist dictator in Venezuela stirring up trouble (even attempting to destabilize Columbia and inviting in the Russians), then we’re all headed into the abyss. Intelligence and flowery words don’t make up for wisdom and experience.

  18. GW

    News Flash… The world won’t all of a sudden improve if Obama wins. There will still be the sick and hungry, there will still be pollution, there will still be greed and corruption (even more perhaps). Things will improve without government interference. Alas, Obama will receive credit either way. If we go further in the tank, it is Bush’s fault. If not, Obama really is the Messiah (not).This world won’t change until we realize the government as we know it is corrupt and needs to fundamentally change. Collin Powell is no different than all the rest of the mud slinging politicans. Bought and paid for by their blind ambition.

  19. Hockeydino

    Inspired by it? He’s a socialist, and has always leaned that way. All hail the military industrial complex!I couldn’t stop laughing. Who cares if Chairman Maobama is a muslim, the fact he’s a socialist is what should scare the hell out of everyone. Oh wait, we need “change”, so it’s ok. What’s even more laughable is how everyone calls McCain a conservative.I needed the smiles..thanks everyone!

  20. gregorylent

    i read threads like this one, i am sad for the world

  21. Jake

    You’re doing a good thing, Fred. That was most certainly a hugely important moment in Colin Powell’s endorsement, and I’m glad you highlighted it for us.I’m also glad that you continue to be willing to get political on the blog. It is a bummer that even a tangential mention of politics (isn’t this post’s big point about prejudice and leadership, not the election?) will spin part of the conversation into angry nu-uh yeah-huh arguments. But I think it’s great to get an occasional dose of thoughtful politics and policy commentary from someone other than a usual suspect pundit.Thank you for noticing the seven year old Muslim aspect of Powell’s endorsement, and thank you for lending your blog and community to the thought. It’s an important one, and I think it’s great that you’ve passed it a little deeper into the world.

    1. fredwilson

      Thanks for this comment

  22. Aruni S. Gunasegaram

    It was great to hear Colin Powell! He is a very smart and thoughtful man and deeply admired. Great strategic move on part of the Obama campaign to have him wait until now to state his endorsement…right when early voting starts. I do wish Powell had spoken up more about the Iraq war. I think he either didn’t know how or felt he had to be loyal to his party on the war since he was a part of it.I am very hopeful of what’s to come and I’m glad Powell put his reputation on the line…

  23. Michal Chick

    I cannot tell you how relieved I was to have someone finally make the point about the bias that has sprung up since 9/11 and how easily many Americans have taken to it. Many times as I grew up I heard people who claimed to be without prejudice talk about wanting a “color blind” society. But color blind somehow presupposes that there is something wrong with color, and if only we didn’t see it everything will be OK.I believe that one of America’s strengths is that it si a “colorful” society; imbued with all the richness that comes when people of different races, creeds, and colors interact. Colin Powell has finally given voice to the real damage from 9/11 – our negative objectification and stereotyping of Muslims.This is not the America we want to be. Thank you Colin (now if he would only stop supporting preemptive war).

  24. LivePaola

    Powell showed courage in his endorsement. But in my opionion he tied it too much to Obama’s intellectual strengths:http://livepaola.wordpress….

  25. David Hornik

    I couldn’t agree more. It was the crowning moment of Powel’s endorsement of Obama. This election has been terribly divisive. It has been the most demoralizing piece of the discussion. Two moments in this campaign have made me stand up and cheer. The first, when John Kerry, during the Democratic convention, said that if elected Barak Obama would shut down the detainment camp at Guantanamo — a true disgrace to this country’s human rights record. The second, this moment, when Powel spoke of equality for all religions in our country. I hope the country will come together and embrace tolerance and inclusion over intolerance and exclusion — the choice seems clear to me.

    1. Guest

      I am probably becoming tedious here, so this is the last time I say this and I’ll shut up.Intellectual honesty compels us to acknowledge that McCain also called for closing of Guantanamo. We need to focus on the real forces of hatred and intolerance (e.g. Romney), not on McCain.<object width=”425″ height=”344″><param name=”movie” value=”http://www.youtube.com/v/wE…”></param><param name=”allowFullScreen” value=”true”></param><embed src=”http://www.youtube.com/v/wE…” type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” allowfullscreen=”true” width=”425″ height=”344″></embed></object>Cheers

  26. josh guttman

    Amen brother. I agree wholeheartedly, this was the most important part of the endorsement.

  27. Stu Rich

    Amen Fred. I am constantly amazed at the collective tendency to immediately associate “Muslim” with “Terrorist”. Prior to 9/11 the worst recent act of terrorism in this country was the Oklahoma City bombing. Timothy McVeigh was no muslim. The recent history in Northern Ireland should teach us that Christians are equally capable of terrorism. How did we develop this crippling fear of “others” in America?

  28. slowblogger

    I have a different hypothesis that a community (or society) needs to have certain level of homogeneity in beliefs. It is a hypothesis because I am not very sure about it yet myself. I am not talking about the religion topic specifically, but about more general values.It seems that small difference in beliefs and values in a group – from as small as a married couple to as big as a country – is healthy and can usually be moderated and compromised. When the gap is too large, it may be better to separate.Now the question is… What is small difference and what is large difference? It is fuzzy, but as human beings we often feel it.

  29. Krishnan

    Colin Powells comments are hardly surprising as he is on the Saudi gravy train like many ex- Secretaries of State James Baker, Albright, …… . Perhaps you don’t know about the generous gifts he has received from the Prince Bandar. But then most of State Department and large section of Washington is on the Saudi payroll not to leave aside our Ivy League campuses from Harvard, Columbia, and Georgetown.And this is the very crowd which is always pushing the Islamist agenda and blaming the infidels for racism etc when it is Muslims having trouble with everybody from Buddhist, Hindus, Africans, Slavs, French, Brits …..around the world.It certainly does not matter what your skin color, or religion is for the President of United states. But it does matter that the person loves this country. So it is certainly disconcerting to see Obama is bosom buddy with all kinds of Jihadist/islamist who hate America- Nation of islam, Ayers, Khalid Mansour, Rail Odinga, Rashid Khalidi, and list goes on an on, These people all are also very tight with the Wahhabi lobby.Now you are a very bright man who can connect the dots if you go beyond your Utopian idealism of race and think about our nation’s well being. Particularly well being when we are engaged in a long war with the Wahhabists.

  30. Mrinal

    Being originally Indian, from the day I “got off the boat” in 99, I have NOT had one bad experience and consequently I have loved America and the people. I tend to compare immigration/foreign travel with that of a baby’s initial phase of life and how they are raised – the first few (months, years) dictate your perspective and prejudices about that country (or life in the case of a baby) I personally dont believe in even countries, Fred – we are all the same and we are all different…. some personal posts on it here: http://mrinal.vox.com/libra

  31. lars

    I am so pleased we are tolerant of the intolerant, good strategy. Ask Europe.

  32. Roem

    I’ve been staring at this comment box for 15 minutes, back and forth, trying to put everything I want to say into a short but poignant form. But my emotions on this issue have made it impossible.So please accept this very heartfelt, “thank you.”