Speak to the mind and you'll drop in ratings
Apparently it is a political suicide in USA to make people think. Obama's ex-preacher Jeremiah Wright is the most sane US preacher that I've ever heard. If you read or listen to his sermons in full length and go beyond the Fox News presented soundbites, he is 99% right. The US has long been doing extreme violence to countries around the world, so it is no wonder that such violence came back to US. Russia had the same problem with Afghanistan and Chechnya. If you try to put yourself up as 'world police', some people will disagree. Then he damned America's _government_ for letting Americans down by not caring enough about the people. The only thing that I would smile and shake my head at was the statement that American government invented HIV. I doubt even they have such resources. Read this transcript for example, the sermon is just a great sermon that urges the people think for themselves. And what people put this sermon down for? Using a word 'Negro'? Having an issue with some specific politicians? He is a pastor, pastors are meant to have a strong opinion a vision and to project that for the congregation to see. "I'm not going to stop thinking just because I love Jesus" is the summary of that sermon if you ask me. And that is the most positive religious message I've heard from that side of the pond for a long time. You can agree or disagree with rev. Wright, but you can still go to his sermons and enjoy it because he makes you think. I would talk to most racist bastard, serial killer or even Hitler himself if he could tell me something that would provoke my mind to think and thus improve myself. You don't have to agree with people to benefit from speaking to them or from listening to what they have to say. Even if someone is 100% wrong and misguided, if his speeches can make you think of some good idea, it is worth it. And rev. Jeremiah Wright is not 100% wrong, from what I've heard he is on the money most of the time and only some of his statements I would disagree with. And he is a great speaker. If I would have not been an Obama supporter, I would become one because of Wright.
Or because of the very accurate observation by Obama that in hard times people in rural USA cling to trusted values such as guns and religion. There is nothing wrong with that.
I am amazed how such true statements can be so turned by US press and can actually reduce Obamas rating. I was starting to believe that not all is lost in the US, but if Obama does not get elected, well ... it is all lost in the US.
PS. How this related to Debian? Or software is the best choice for the society in the long term. However, that is only true if we assume that people behave rationally and use it, improve it and contribute back improvements for the public good. If the general population is made weary of rational thinking and starts thinking in soundbites and slogans, then there is a ceiling to free software expansion and the whole free software movement can eventually be crushed in the interests of homeland security with strong corporate commercial software backing. (Only government approved software is allowed to run with mandatory government approved back-doors and hardware verification to prevent cyber-terrorism or something, thus also forbidding any compilers and interpreters outside government controls.)