Friday, October 22, 2010

Fired Up at USC

I'm not sure what I was thinking this morning when I decided to join a crowd estimated at over 35,000 to hear the president speak at a rally in support of Democratic candidates.  It took three hours to get in, people were packed so tight you could barely move, and it was difficult to see the stage through all the arms holding up cell phone cameras.  But I wanted to see for myself that the president can still attract and fire up a big crowd, and that all this talk about an "enthusiasm gap" between Democrats and Republicans is overblown.  This crowd was overwhelmingly supportive and enthusiastic.  And the only evidence of opposition I saw was a pathetic demonstration of about 10 Young Americans for Freedom bravely holding up some counter-signs at the entrance to the rally.  I was also struck by the fact that the crowd was so anxious to hear the President, and less interested in listening to all the other warm-up speeches, even though the rally was ostensibly in support of candidates Jerry Brown, Barbara Boxer and Kamala Harris, all of whom gave very short, forgettable speeches to the impatient audience.  (Maybe we were just tired from standing for hours and were more than ready for the main event.)

Barack Obama really is a rock star  Not only does he carry the weight of the world on his shoulders now; he also seems to be carrying the whole Democratic Party.  I know in some parts of the country there are Democrats distancing themselves from him, and I'm not sure whether that is a good strategy or not.  Here in California the candidates seem grateful for his support, and don't even try to compete with his star appeal.

And don't forget, that if you want to move forward, you put the transmission in "D,"  whereas if you want to reverse, you put it in "R."


  1. Glad to see he came to such a great university! Good to see your enthusiasm as well. Today must have been a fun day. The man is a star, he will always be star for most; even many of those who oppose his agenda see him as so.

    I'd like to play some 1 on 1 basketball with him. I'd take him down low. Then have dinner, a couple beers -- and then discuss politics. I am sure we would disagree on some issues and be lock step on others. That's healthy.

    Was the Trojan Band there? Did you hear:

    Fight On for ol' SC
    Our men Fight On to victory.
    Our Alma Mater dear,
    looks up to you
    Fight On and win
    For ol' SC
    Fight On to victory
    Fight On!

  2. yes, and half the people in the audience are making this weird hand gesture while they do it.

  3. Ha! Not sure if I get your message accurately, but I'll guess. I have been to many UCLA vs USC football games. There were were 100,000 people the last time I went and I was in the UCLA section. Each time the USC band played (often as they scored often) the UCLA fans would either wave a credit card, deriding Trojan students (as rich) or flip the bird. All fun and games. The truth? It's less expensive for middle class kids to go to a private university than the UC system. The private schools typically match Cal grants and have about 85% of their students on serious finacial aid. My point, UCLA families of students are probably better off finacially than most families of far more expensive private universitys.

  4. No, they were USC students waving two fingers up and down. Obviously some kind of cult.

  5. Nice for you that you could take that much time off. I wanted to go to the rally in Santa Ana, but , I had to work!

  6. "And don't forget, that if you want to move forward, you put the transmission in "D," whereas if you want to reverse, you put it in "R."

    More like "D" as in driving it into the ditch. "R" as in running around the vehicle in hyterics.