Why is Obama winning?

There are few things I enjoy more than following American elections in the Chinese press. Zaobao (from Singapore) had something recently on Obama and why he is doing so well. Like many foreigners I think they were mystified by this unknown becoming known, but they put some thought into it. They rejected the Clinton camp’s suggestion that his success is entirely attributable to his 花言 (flowery words). After all, many prominent officials and movie stars are supporting him. I get the impression that they think American voters are sheep (which I might be inclined to agree with) but that they also think that American elites are significantly harder to fool (which I really doubt, but then I’m an American not a Confucian). They do point out that as a young man Obama can deal with the grind of the campaign trail, and that he has been successful in raising small amounts of money from lots of people. The one I found most interesting is that they claim that people are worried about American becoming a banana republic if we end up with a Clinton to follow a Bush who followed a Clinton who followed a Bush. I have heard Americans mention that, but I doubt many Democratic primary voters will switch to McCain on that basis. I guess from an Asian perspective that problem jumps out at you more. It’s a nice piece that explains things pretty well. As much as I find some of their thinking odd I wish the American press ran articles on foreign elections that were half as informative.


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