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Should We Start Calling It An Obama-Gasm ?

by @ 6:24 pm on February 12, 2008. Filed under 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Obamagasms, Politics

Apparently women are really taken with Barack Obama:

College Park, Maryland – You can see it in their flushed-face smiles and hear it in their screams. They say the phenomenon is difficult to describe, but once they experience it they tell their friends, sisters, mothers and daughters, and they come back for more if they can.

“He’s very charismatic. It was a ‘you-had-to-be-there’ kind of experience,” said Lolita Breckenridge, 37, after hearing Democratic White House hopeful Barack Obama address a packed rally at the University of Maryland on Monday.

A dedicated supporter, she brought two of her friends to hear the Illinois senator deliver one of his much-talked-about speeches.

“Not too much of the speech was new to me,” she admitted. “But hearing him live…” she trailed off, shaking her head and grinning.

I was going to refrain from commenting on this point, but, really, why would any parent name their daughter Lolita ?

But, wait, there’s more:

Ahead of Obama’s speech, hip-hop music blared across the sports arena and fans held up signs that read “Barack My World” and “Party Like a Barack Star”. Afterward, supporters were eager to talk about the experience.

For Karen Ruffin, 42, hearing him speak of his hope for the country was “inspiring, full of hope and phenomenal”.

She said she felt some pangs of regret for not supporting Clinton, who early on was tipped to gain the women’s vote.

“I was undecided in the beginning but after hearing a few speeches I gradually moved toward him,” Ruffin said.

Her friend Tyra Simpkins, 37, said she has always rooted for Obama.

This is how people are making their voting decisions in America today ? Do they even know what his proposals are ?

No wonder we’re so screwed up

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34 Responses to “Should We Start Calling It An Obama-Gasm ?”

  1. JayDee says:

    There’s an old show-biz expression for the phenomenon described: “Seat Puddles”.

  2. Anthony says:

    It is getting to the point people will claim that the lame walk, the deaf hear, and the mute speak when merely grazed by Obama’s shadow.

  3. umno says:

    “This is how people are making their voting decisions in America today?”

    Um … no. It’s how WOMEN are making their voting decisions, and it’s the same as it always has been since we allowed them to participate.

    Seen any ugly guys get elected recently? Or even since the invention of the camera? John “Horseface” Kerry? Mike “I Wear Stupid Tank Hats” Dukakis. Walter “I’ll Bore You At Dinner” Mondale? Al “I Can Do Your Taxes” Gore?

    Women want sizzle baby. If your candidate doesn’t make them just a wee bit wet, faggeddaboutit.

    Just like dating.

  4. Chili Relleno says:

    Doug just does’t get it. This is an evangelical movement. These people are Obama-gelicals. It’s not “Obama-gasm” but “Obama-lujah!!”

  5. james says:

    “Her friend Tyra Simpkins, 37, said she has always rooted for Obama.”

    This is particularly funny reading here in Australia, where the verb ‘to root’ means something a bit different…

  6. Dale Weeks says:

    I like the “rooted for” as though it’s some sort of a football game.

    The Obama Phenomenon is scary because it’s firmly based in emotion and emotion will make people do some pretty strange things.

    As for how people are making their voting decisions these days…don’t get me started.

  7. JOhn says:

    We need Obama to beat Hillary. He’s weaker than McCain.

    The Clintons would be infinitely harder to beat.

  8. JOhn says:

    These are the same women who fell for Hillary’s “crying” the other day.

  9. fat Man says:

    Lolita Breckenridge, 37
    Karen Ruffin, 42
    Tyra Simpkins, 37

    I don’t want to belabor the obvious, but these are not teenyboppers. Or, at least, they shouldn’t be.

  10. OldAv8r says:

    It’s easy to sneer at this mindless idolatry, but, I was a Jr in high school in 1960 and watched this same phenomenon attached to JFK. Many people will follow [and vote for] anyone who stirs them. What they sound like overrides anything they actually say. Hope I’m wrong but Obama hysteria could be big.

  11. Bill says:

    The world has seen Obamagasms before—”Triumph of the Will.”
    Every Obamanite should watch it.

  12. Indga says:

    All that’s missing is this laudatory response to another “charismatic” speaker who rose to lead another country that was desperately seeking “change”: “Sieg heil!”

    I’m intensely curious, and perhaps someone can answer me. What kind of “change” is the new messiah-who-says-he/we-is/are-the-one(s)-he/we-has/have-been-waiting-for going to bring? Der charismatike Fuehrer also brought change, and the world has not yet recovered from it.

  13. tiger says:

    Well….I hope that the difference between JFK and Obama is clear to voters by November. JFK had substance and this guy’s just got audicty.

  14. jonathan says:

    As opposed to John Mccain who admits who knows nothing about the economy, we will get more wars and he is 73 years old???

    MMMMM…who should I a 40 year old vote for???

  15. John D says:

    You’re right oldav8r, I too remember the 1960 election. My parents were FDR Democrats and that is how I was raised.

    But look at what JFK wrought and ask yourself if the US, and the world, might not have been a much better place if Nixon had won.

    Bay of Pigs, Vienna Summit, Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Vietnam War. All these things happened because JFK was considered a weak playboy that had bought the Presidency with his daddy’s money. In every case, except Vietnam, he flinched. In Vietnam he was trying to prove to the Communists that he wasn’t weak.

    Think of how differently Nixon would have handled these things if they had even come up if he was elected. The Communists, Khrushchev and Castro especially, had met with Nixon and knew he was not a pushover. They probably would have not even considered doing those things.

    Now we’re looking at electing another light-weight who had no idea of what he is getting into. Judging by the “Issues” page of his website, he isn’t running for President, he wants to be King.

    We still haven’t recovered from Kennedy, how many decades will it take to recover from Obama?

  16. Just start calling it an O’gasm…

  17. submandave says:

    First, the Godwin’s Law violations are over-the-top; the Constitutional separation of powers means the President can only be more powerful than the Congress if they let him/her. Not bloody likely, mate.

    But I agree greatly with John D. Democrats in general, and of the current choices Sen. Obama in particular, are viewed as weak on defense. The chances that someone would want to test his resolve vis-a-vis the GWOT are, I believe, much higher than someone wanting to test McCain’s. If you want to avoid war, jonathan, the best recipe is to be strong enough to both discourage logical adversaries (China) and destroy illogical adversaries (al Queda).

  18. If you need a good laugh over Obama Mania check out “Daily Takes” post on from yesterday. http://www.dailytakes.com/?p=1934.

    I think he’s in for a rude awakening in a general election, when he actually starts getting called on his lack of policy. As one pundit put it, being for hope is a no brainer, if you aren’t for hope what do you want, despair? When Obama has to answer where the hope will come from, and what it will cost then some of that luster will come off.

  19. Obamafan says:

    The majority of voters in this country have never voted based on the issues. The smartest candidate usually loses to the most charismatic one. The GREAT thing about Barack Obama is that he’s both the smartest and the most charismatic. He is our first chance in a long time to have a brilliant, studious, level-headed policy wonk who can not only win the election but inspire people to get behind his policies.

    It’s true that many of Obama’s supporters don’t know a lot about his accomplishments and policies. That doesn’t mean they’re lacking. There’s a huge swath of voters out there who could never get excited about those things in any election, and Obama has figured out how to get them fired up about politics.

    This would be disturbing if he were truly an empty suit, but in reality he’s the most substantive candidate in the race. That’s why he wins so overwhelmingly among voters with college educations, and by an even larger margin among those who’ve gone to grad school. He’s got both the emotion voters and the brainiacs in his coalition. That hasn’t happened in a while, but it’s a very good sign.

  20. NikFromNYC says:

    Has anybody thought of us Libertarians? Now that Global Warming is road kill, what’s left? Hillary says it takes a ‘Village’ to raise children. That’s FASCISM. Indoctrinate them when they are young, average age seven. Straight out of distopian novels. No, Hillary, no, and no again. It takes a family to raise a child, not a COMMITTEE (“village” = GOVERNMENT).

    So they send us the worst guy around, if a registered republican like me wants to vote for McCain? I’d vote for his wife our daughter, but not him. It’s not a simple thing. It’s a vibe thing. He’s not saying the RIGHT things. He’s got six faces. I mean this objectively. He’s a farking alien, with a chip on his shoulder about some awful war that killed 10X drafted kids like him a months vs. the Iraq thing.

    So that leaves Obama. Untested. Virile yet *steerable* and not in the HIllary sense of lack of principle steerable.

    And Obama (can you believe this is coming from my keyboard?!), kills a nasty part of the left, sanitizes it forever, not only the “race card” (keep poor blacks on welfare = RELIANT ON HANDOUTS that Exxon pays 28% of), but also the sex card.

    As a girl, which I am actually not, but will try to imagine, to carry a big stick, I don’t think child seducer Bill Clinton in the White Sperm House has much pull, nor does obviously non-groovy McCain who will soon need a cane along with Viagra. Women are attracted to power. Where are the pictures of McCain chopping wood? Reagan? Bush Jr. Ranch types. Marlbouroug Men. Clint Eastwood vibe. But Obama is even more. He’s exotic too, not black or white, but both. Not some boring Latin Lover with concern about “The Hispanic Vote.” He’s a person to stir up BORING and INEFFECTIVE government, be his policy right now be as embryonic as Bush Jr.’s was before 9/11 or not.

    He (Obama) *had*, on record, suggested DE-CRIMINALIZING pot. The Constitution was printed on hemp. The biofuels industry would work better with hemp than corn. The original USA flag was made of hemp. I am a hippie hater, but this black guy is no Weather Underground, Algerian Embassy Panther, nor Player Hater, period.

    The protest vote alone, from the Right, against both the Clinton aristocracy *and* the lack of actual (small = SMALL government) offerings, make Obama a shoe in, and not shoe shine man at all, even if his main current attraction is pre-prepared rallies that he cannot yet sustain off camera.

  21. JedReport says:

    The premise here is flawed.

    So far this campaign, most women have voted for Hillary Clinton.

    You want to come up with a cute name for that?

  22. How about me for the “stats”? 67, white, female, semi-retired professional, Piney Woods of East Texas — We Texas Ladies will change the stats!! GO OBAMA!!

  23. Honora Price says:

    Wow. I stopped reading the anti-Obama comments because it’s depressing to realize the number of morons out there with a computer.

    Although that’s insulting to actual morons.

    You people are revealing far more about your insecurities than you are about Sen. Obama. You think he has no particulars, just vague hope and change promises? Check his website – he has position papers on every topic you can think of, and more. You think women are only voting for him based on sexual attraction, and you say “is that what this country has come to?” Hey, my mom voted for Reagan because he was “so handsome, and I liked his movies.” There will always be twits who vote based on looks (FYI, throughout filmed election history the taller candidate won all but one contest; ditto the better looking candidate – that’s the media age. What, we should vote for an ugly midget?).

    But if you think Obama’s appeal is based on sex appeal, then you seriously need to evolve. You’re stuck in your first chakra, you’re at the bottom of Maslow’s needs hierarchy, or as my mother used to say, “get your mind out of the gutter.” People flocked by the hundreds of thousands to hear the last Pope speak. He looked like a white prune. Was that based on sex? No, it was because they were inspired by his message. The people of America are hungry for hope, inspiration, new ideas, a new direction – all of which Barack has. Americans are not hungry for sex; we’re innundated by it, drowned in it, bombarded with it to the point that we’ve become numb to it – we don’t even see the gross impropriety of walking our children past Victoria’s Secret display windows in the mall. Americans are not swayed by superficial appeal – they voted for that the last 2 elections (although not in winning numbers, no matter how the vote got fixed) and look what it got them? A president they’d “like to have a beer with,” but like the average guy you’d have a beer with he had NO CLUE what to do when presented with real problems and turned to his unhinged Uncle Dick.

    So. Americans are flocking to Barack Obama because he is BRILLIANT, he has NEW IDEAS (and very specific ones if you can spare the energy to look them up instaed of boorishly parroting false criticisms), he is INSPIRING, and he offers hope without illiusions. Americans are tired of the empty sizzle we’ve been sold for too long. We want the steak, and Barack’s got it.

    And too bad for you if you find him so attractive you can’t see beyond that.

    Being an inspiring speaker isn’t about sex. It’s about finding that rare public person who has a heart and a soul as well as an intellect, and who has managed to integrate them into an authentic whole. And it’s about how grateful we are that he has finally come along. If you can’t appreciate how desperately necessary it was to find someone who possessed exactly these qualities to lead this country out of the bleak wilderness it had become, then you’re not smart enough to realize how bad things are. Wake up, and smell what Barack is cooking.

  24. Honora,

    Other than saying “hope” and “change” a lot, what new ideas (as in different from what Democrats have been saying for 20 years) does Barack Obama actually have ?

    And how is someone who has been a Senator for only two years qualified to be President ?

    And I say that as someone who voted for him in the Virginia primary.

  25. Honora Price says:

    If you’re really interested I can send you a link to his position papers. And his experience in the Illinois state senate also counts – Chicago state house politics has often been desccribed as a blood sport. He has as much experience as Lincoln did when he was elected. And more to the point, “experience” of the kind belonging to the old paradigm is no longer the most important quality in a candidate. What is important is the ability to inspire your citizens to take responsibility – to be the change they wish to see – and to believe that the future can get better and that America can once again be the great, respected nation it once was. In fact, to be the nation that it was intended to be but has never quite achieved. Barack Obama’s election will itself cause a tremendous healing of the racial divides in this country, because African-Americans will see that there actually are white people who “get it” and who can see past color. There has been limited proof of that in the past. We as a people are currently hapless, hopeless and helpless – a phrase that’s used to describe suicidal patients at imminent risk. We see ourselves as at the mercy of tragic events beyond our control to change. It takes an extraordinarily gifted man to lift us out of this national depression, and Obama has those gifts. I also recommend you read Obama vs. the Phobocracy by Michael Chabon in the Feb. 4th Washington Post before you respond. Obama supporters are not mindless Moonies enchanted by a smooth talker. We are people who are courageous enough to have hope and belief, in the face of a disastrous present, that the future can be better; and that we can look the rest of the world in the eye again rather than hang our heads in shame. Huzzah, mes citroyens!

  26. Honora Price says:

    Not to mention his brilliance, his ability to synthesize information and formulate a new approach, his intuitive as well as intellectual abilty to deal with all sorts of people at all levels, etc. etc. etc. We’ve been stuck so long with a president who can’t think on his feet and can’t express himself coherently that we’re forgetting how important that it and that it can make a huge difference in negotiations. Also read this about his status as a “third culture kid”: http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1695803,00.html

    He has positives, attributes and vital qualities no one has before.

  27. Honora Price says:

    I have to add a few comments about the College Park article. People are entitled to make any signs they want, but at campaign offices we volunteers thought the “party like a Barack star” and “Barack my world” were kind of silly – treating him without the gravitas he deserves. On the other hand, we liked “Barack the Vote” and “Barack the House!” But I digress.

    My main point was about that sly little crack – “hip-hop music blared across the sports arena” – and its subliminal racial stereotyping. “Hip-hop music,” “blare,” and “sports arena” all serve to trigger subconscious associations. Don’t be disingenuous and deny it. And more to the point, what I have particularly noticed about Obama’s music at events is how diversified it is, how inclusive of a variety of musical styles. I’ve heard old Motown (my personal favorite), rock, country, alt-rock, and yes, some hip-hop too. But it is only one of a number of musical genres that surface at his events. As a music lover who comes from a family of musicians, it has really impressed me how wide-ranging his selections are – much more so than the usual one-or two-song belaboring that most pols do at their events (remember Clinton’s “Don’t Stop Thinkin’ About Tomorrow”? Bush’s Lee Greenwood endless loop? Puh-leeze).

  28. [...] Obamagasm phenomenon apparently knows no bounds: BALTIMORE — Maryland Congressman Elijah Cummings has held [...]

  29. [...] this was going to happen. At some point reporters were going to get bored handing in stories about women fainting at Obama campaign rallies, endless paens to hope, Chris Matthews getting shivers up his leg, and Michelle Obama’s [...]

  30. Dave says:

    and then some people are just dazzled by intelligence, but those are the exceptions in all political parties. Read: http://jaydiatribe.blogspot.com/2007/08/what-to-do-about-obamas-brains.html

    At least some people understand that Sen. Obama is the smartest candidate. Maybe not smart in an evil devious Rove/Clinton way, but smart in a real intelligence kind of way, which if elected could allow the country to actually get back on the right path and make America thrive. Fear and divisiveness can’t continue. Our children and grandchildren will be paying off the debt from from Bush for a long time.

  31. [...] As far as the first question goes, the fact of the matter is that a lot of people don’t know, and that is precisely Obama’s problem with this issue. Up until the Wright story broke, Obama was essentially a blank slate upon which anyone, supporter or detractor, could write whatever they wished. It’s why his empty, meaningless speeches about “hope” and “change” were so well-received and why women were fainting at his speeches early in the campaign as if he were the political equivalent… [...]

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