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October 22, 2008

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Lyle

I'm writing this comment from the panhandle of Florida, and wow, what I've heard since arriving two days ago illustrates why the McCain-Palin ticket's socialist smear seems to work with their base. Folks like Joe-the-Unlicensed-Plumber wouldn't have to pay (slightly) higher taxes -- indeed, he would probably benefit from some of the wealth from higher-earning individuals being spread around -- but McCain is making blanket statements that imply that even folks with meager paychecks will be asked to cough up more. A dental assistant I met who makes $12-an-hour was ranting yesterday that she doesn't want to pay more taxes to finance losers who live on welfare in some far-away city. But she wouldn't have to! Gaaa, it's so frustrating.

On a happier note, I attended Michelle Obama's rally yesterday at the Pensacola Civic Center. The standing-room-only crowd of 7,000 was wildly enthusiastic, diverse ethnically and age-wise, and brimming with positive vibes. Because Pensacola has a Naval air station, there was also a notable presence of veterans and active-duty servicepeople. For every Obama sign one sees in this area, there must be at least 10 McCain signs, so the mile-long queue to get into the Center took me by surprise. But the queue was worth the wait! Michelle gave a knock-out speech to rev us all up not only to get out there and vote, but also to remember that change doesn't happen overnight simply due to who moves into the White House -- she urged us to stay active politically at the local level, to volunteer in our communities, to help at our kids' schools, and so on. The atmosphere was electric with a sense of possibility and, yes, HOPE. I was already "in the tank" (gawd, I look forward to not hearing that phrase after 4 November anymore) for Obama, but Michelle's rally made me feel like I've truly drunk the Kool-Aid. To borrow some "verbage" from Palin -- Michelle Obama will make an "awesome" First Lady!

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