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I held off writing anything about Obama's victory yesterday, not least because listening to the coverage was making me angry. The focus, pretty universally, was on his colour and implicitly how great it was that America had managed to elect someone who identified themselves as black.

I'm afraid for me it's pretty much an irrelevance. I can see it's important for Americans: discrimination was and is far more deeply rooted there than here, but viewed from this side of the pond the issue is about who was the best choice and Obama simply was the best choice.

By a mile.

He was pointed out to me by Malcolm long before he became the candidate and I watched pretty much every speech he had made that was out there on the Web. That and his performance against the other Democratic candidates left me with no doubt he was the man we wanted - his opposition to the second Gulf war, his recognition that America was no longer looked up to by the rest of the world and, closer to (his) home, his real interest in the financial health of the middle (aka working) class all boded well for the future.

What really scared me though was the opposition. McCain, to be fair to him, seemed competent enough, although compared to Obama he didn't shine and his handling of the credit crunch left a lot to be desired.

But the man is old, and old men die. That leaves the Vice President with their finger on the nuclear trigger, and when it's someone like Palin that's really, really scary.

Her interview with Katie Couric on CBS hinted how shallow her knowledge was and since the election it's been revealed by McCain team insiders that, for example, she thought Africa was a country and she couldn't name the members of NAFTA1.

For someone who thought the same way as me look out for Matt Damon all over YouTube ripping into her. He's completely on the money.

  1. Clue: how many countries are there in North America for goodness sake?!

Tags: world Written 06/11/08

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