Thursday, September 13, 2007

That's Gruh-VEL, not Gravel

Talking politics on the blog is like talking about my marriage it can stir up things that are best left well, not out there for all the world to see. I try not to discuss politics here but sometimes it's just damn near impossible like during an election year or when you are just too fired up and your husband can't stand to listen to you rant anymore.

Then along comes a candidate, labeled second-tier, that just begs me to learn more. I'm talking about Gravel. Mike Gravel. He's a presidential hopeful with not a lot of money but an interesting take on things. You may have seen him on YouTube throwing a rock into some water a few months ago. No? Maybe you remember him from the 70's, if so good on you! However, he's probably not on your radar. While just as busy as the other presidential hopefuls he just doesn't get a lot of play. Which really? I love.

To me what is most fascinating about Gravel is not his determination, it's his ability to show his true self on all occasions. He has no money in his campaign chest, about $130K per quarter, compared to the millions the other candidates possess. The man uses parking meters in DC because garages are too expensive and he doesn't have the staff that many of the more well-known candidates do. His thoughts on being called second-tier? He finds it troubling that because he doesn't possess a pack of media hounding him or big money that he is treated as a joke. A joke by the media. The media he needs to make his ideas and himself known to the American public. To Gravel second-tier means that just a few people get to decide who becomes a serious candidate and who doesn't. Troubling indeed.

Always a lover of the underdog, I think that is why I find Gravel so fascinating. I'm not saying I am voting for him, a lady has to keep her secrets after all, but I keep coming back to him. Listening to him speak. Reading articles by him and about him. I am curious. Just like we all need to be about our candidates. Gravel can be controversial and since he doesn't have people in his ear all the time he really talks and speaks his mind no matter what the outcome. That appeals to me. The man owns one car and rents an apartment for goodness sake. He isn't living in some big house with a staff of servants or aides always telling him what to do and not do.

So while the media likes to make him out to be a bit crazy and prone to outbursts, I would rather learn about him and his beliefs in my own way just like I do all the candidates and make my informed decision that way. In the coming year more and more spin will be made on the candidates skewing and hiding their true voices. I'm doing my homework now. And right now grassroots and old fashioned politics without all the slickness of Oprah and big money are by far the more interesting avenue to me.

Packaged candidates after all are so last election season.


  1. Did you see Gravel on Bill Maher almost 2 weeks ago? He was great!

    I always distrust the "big box" candidates myself. They'll say anything for a vote or good PR

  2. There was a big profile of him in the Washington Post Magazine this past Sunday. I haven't read it yet, but now I'm tempted to.


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