By Pierre | Filed under Us in America 

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Obama got the nomination today, I’m very happy and I’m not alone. I voted for him the way people vote in America: if you like someone, you send him money and if enough people like him as much as you do, he buys himself a good campaign and he gets elected (assuming the voting machines aren’t rigged against him).

I’m very happy for the country too. Something tells me that if a black man got where he is now, it’s because a lot of people were really tired of the stupid white men that have been leading the nation to war, recession and record deficits for the last 8 years. It’s time for a change.

Part of me feels as joyful and inspired as Jesse Jackson Jr, observing through Martin Luther King’s words that “the moral arc of the universe” will “bend toward freedom and justice for all” on August 28th, the day Obama officially accepts the nomination, exactly 45 years after the famous “I Have A Dream” speech.

But part of me sadly notes with Warren Buffet, the richest man on the planet (whom you can hardly accuse of interventionism), that there is only so much that governments can do anymore. Talking about the world economy last week, he declared: “That’s the problem. You can’t steer it, you can’t regulate it anymore. You can’t get the genie back in the bottle.” Basically, we sold it all to the corporations and we did it in such a way that we can’t even take it back.

Another thought that comes to my mind, as a French expat living in the US, is that it’s going to be much easier for me to explain my friends and family that if I enjoy living here, and especially in San Francisco, it’s because for all the abuses and dysfunctions of the American society - most of the time inherited from naive idealizations of an extremely conservative, religious, racist and violent past - there is a fascinating minority of very progressive artists, inventors, thinkers and leaders that acts as a counterbalance and continue to lead the country forward. Which is what Obama will contribute to…

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