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Gandul, Romania

The Americans Didn’t
Vote with Their Wallets

By Cristian Tudor Popescu

As a citizen of the world, I feel more at peace with him at the White House.

Translated By Andreea Muntean

7 November 2012

Edited by Tom Proctor

Romania - Gandul - Original Article (Romanian)

Romney addressed the bellies and wallets of Americans; Obama [had] their minds, hearts and collective consciousness.

Romney tried to win by offering cynicism, selfishness and local “patriotism.” In other words, what do I, an American, care about global warming as long as I have cheap fuel? On the other hand, Obama stayed faithful to his progressive and selfless global vision; he focused on health, education and green energy.

Obama dared to ask the American people to suffer for a better future for their children, while Romney did his best to sell them on “today” and going along with “we’ll figure it out later.”

Mitt Romney contradicted himself, sometimes even in the span of 24 hours. According to Bill Clinton, he could have been “chief contortionist for Cirque du Soleil” in his ever-changing race for votes. Struggling to have it all in his spectacle of shallowness, he pleased some voters today and others tomorrow. Even though Obama didn't keep all the promises he made in 2008, and although he made mistakes and disappointed many people, he never lied, never changed his principles and, most of all, never abandoned the hard-but-true road that he chose to take as president.

Romney’s foreign policy, if this narrow-minded businessman even had one, would have become another American rattling of sabers that would have worked against the nation’s power to negotiate and settle conflicts. Obama is, first of all, a rational man and an intellectual. He is capable of powerful measures, as in the case of bin Laden’s liquidation, but is never aggressive in international relations and is untouched by the paranoia of the Cold War. As a citizen of the world, I feel more at peace with him at the White House.

As a Romanian citizen, I never got any special attention from Obamerica. Neither did Europe, which was overlooked in favor of the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific. If Romney had won, we would have had to remember that, in his view, the possible collapse of the eurozone is a European problem in which America should by no means be engaged, since America uses the dollar, not the euro. Maybe during this mandate, Obama will sing a different tune for Europe, although I don’t think I have a chance of seeing him in real life here in Bucharest as I [did] Richard Nixon.

And still, Barack Obama remains my president. His victory doesn't bring us Romanians more money. But once again, I am happy that he won. Though thanks to nothing else but the awe I stand in when I see how an educated, rational and honest man, a man of common sense and good faith, is able to reach and stay at the very top of politics, it makes it somewhat easier for me to face the vulgarity, cynicism, lies, insensitivity and hypocrisy of our own great political winners.



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