LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Sen. Obama’s skills were clear
October 10, 2008 · Updated 4:57 PM
To the editor:
This is the day after the debate of Sept. 26:
Despite the structures of debating, Obama was able to come across clearly. Accused a half dozen times of not understanding McCain’s points, Obama’s grins and calm manner signaled that it was McCain who did not understand.
Obama understood very well the hard wired perspectives of a warrior — trained at Anapolis — who has lived much of his life in a military environment.
Obama’s approach allows him to know that the lack of aggressiveness is not weakness at all. It shows quiet strength to create the conditions necessary for the birth of peace, and the necessary atmosphere to foster the birth of a cooperative atmosphere.
McCain is ignorant of the fact that the threat of the use of power only wins (sometimes) in games of war. Obama knows how McCain thinks, and he knows that peace is best won by lots of quiet listening, by restating positions followed by question marks, and by seeking common ground where both sides can meet in quiet agreement.
McCain’s training and experience, which are great, does not appear to allow him to see things through Obama’s eyes, so he crows about his superior experience and seeks to put down and overwhelm his opponent.
This, of course, shows that it is McCain who does not understand, while Obama’s grin shows that he knows what is going on. Debating doesn’t easily allow for changes in format and process.
If you heard a recent Channel 9 evaluation of Obama’s way of problem-solving, you might see that this man is a superior kind of adversary. Obama seeks to reduce threats when dealing with an opponent, and operates with the quiet goal of turning an adversary into a cooperative partner in the solving of problems.
Obama understands McCain’s way, which is why he is able to turn things around to a better way that can lead more often to teamwork.
Of course, too many observers are blind to such subtleties, and are convinced from a lifetime of “experience” that to win requires a bigger hammer, which throws light on the reasons we have such a hard time changing patterns of behavior that don’t often work.
Jack W. Small