I'm getting increasingly weirded out by some of Obama's supporters.
On listservs I'm on, some people who should know better – hard-bitten, not-so-young cynics, even – are gushing about Barack, raving about his "game-changing" politics, about his "power to inspire," about how they wept while viewing the now-famous Dipdive video, and on and on.
Then there's this unsettling article from a few weeks back about Obama's volunteer operation. One volunteer speaks of her encounter with the man himself:But the clincher came on March 17, when she met the Democratic contender face to face. She describes how he lit up the room with his wide smile, shook her hand and thanked her for volunteering.
" He looked at me, and the look in his eyes was worth 1,000 words," said Mack, now a regional field organizer. Obama hugged her and whispered something in her ear – she was so thrilled she doesn't remember what it was.
Here's more:Mack wanted to drill home one of the campaign's key strategies: telling potential voters personal stories of political conversion.
She urged volunteers to hone their own stories of how they came to Obama – something they could compress into 30 seconds on the phone.
"Work on that, refine that, say it in the mirror," she said. "Get it down."
She told the volunteers that potential voters would no doubt confront them with policy questions. Mack's direction: Don't go there. Refer them to Obama's Web site, which includes enough material to sate any wonk.
Excuse me, but this sounds more like a cult than a political campaign. The language used here is the language of evangelical Christianity – the Obama volunteers speak of "coming to Obama" in the same way born-again Christians talk about "coming to Jesus."
Thursday, February 07, 2008
A mass religious revival frightens some
At TPMcafe, one Obama supporter raises concerns about her compatriots: