Check out Cass Sunstein’s Trib. Op-Ed

The Obama I know” makes me really jealous of Cass Sunstein, actually, jealous of anyone who can credibly claim to know Obama.

Here’s the most interesting passage:

The University of Chicago Law School is by far the most conservative of the great American law schools. It helped to provide the academic foundations for many positions of the Reagan administration.

But at the University of Chicago, Obama is liked and admired by both Republicans and Democrats. Some local Reagan enthusiasts are Obama supporters. Why? It doesn’t hurt that he’s a great guy, with a personal touch and a lot of warmth. It certainly helps that he is exceptionally able.

But niceness and ability are only part of the story. Obama has a genuinely independent mind, he’s a terrific listener and he goes wherever reason takes him.

Sunstein goes on to provide example after example of Obama doing some real, good-faith consideration of the “other side” of the issue.

This essay would be good reading for the conservatives out there whose opposition to Obama is less likely to be because he’s a democrat, or a “dove” or black, but because they disagree with him on things like privacy, tax law, and health care.  Obama is not an ideologue nor is he a demagogue, despite the vast throngs he attracts.  He’s an intellectual, mostly, and he’ll listen to you even if he disagrees.

If I ever got to hang out with Obama in private, I’d want to know what he really thinks about religion.  Does he really honestly believe that Christ died for his sins?  Does he believe in heaven/hell?  Does he really believe in a god that takes an active role in human affairs?  Does he think that prayer “works”, in so far as god “hears” them, and then does something different, or that he wouldn’t have otherwise done?

Like, I can dig being a part of a church when you’re a community organizer on the South Side of Chicago.  The church might be the only institution whatsoever that still has any reach at all in the harder-up areas.  So sure, I don’t hold that against him.

I just want Obama to assure me that he doesn’t willingly subscribe to bullshit.

and I know that there really is a “religious test” for the highest office in the country: you’ve got to have one.  And I understand why.  I also think that we’ve probably had secular leaders, like Bill Clinton, who played along because that’s what you do.  I just hope that someday, that won’t be the case anymore.

So, Obama, if you want to, you can comment on my blog and let me know.  You don’t even have to use your real name.  Please? (and hey, nobody else pretend to be Obama using a fake name to post on my blog, because, c’mon, how’m I supposed to tell the difference, Ok?  Honor system.  (but really, if you want to, senator, you can just say that whoever DID comment wasn’t you, that way, no one will ever know.))


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