Here in the United States, we the populace-receptors have been living out, for the past 31 months, a campaign-season of epic, well-nigh-novelistic grandeur. Just flash on back to all the promises; all the betrayals; any of the contradictions. The plethora of creeds; the panoply of screeds. That heaping helping of incontrovertibly anti-American inconceivables delivered via BlackBerry — and stamped "Google News Alert." All told, I don't think I'm alone in proclaiming this veritable flume of developments hurtling down the political y-axis to be the defining post-9/11 news-cycle of My or Any Generation, opening, as it or they were, my eyes to just how cogent it is when the news-sayers mention "a narrative"!
Indeed, it is all very like a movie.
All very like an American movie.
But one American movie I'd like to see unreel, in this historic campaign of so many two-party firsts, is the ascendancy of a truly progressive, indelibly radical stumper.
And I believe I have found, wandering through paradise as though in a dream, keeping a poppy to remind him where he's been... sleeping, sleeping, sleeping — that man.
His name is Richard Normandy, and I was as surprised by much of what he had to say as you might realize yourselves to be. Should we consider, for example, Barack Obama's virtues — the man's bold intelligence, infectious optimism, and (no mere metadata) self-symbolic import — we will note the absence of the mindbending. And should we seek out the candidate who can reframe policy within that idiom — all the while silently wondering "Who's Left?" — well, we might discover that it is Richard Normandy who has reframed not just policy but the rhetorical question itself.
I've uncovered some of his campaign graphics to date — along with recordings, presented here for download in the popular MP3 format, of a few speeches that Normandy delivered recently to meetups at the University of California and elsewhere. ("Elsewhere" possibly being Second Life or WoW assemblages, but this hasn't been confirmed.) There's also a website, normandy08.com, which offers some definitely cool shit — although it does appear to be something of a work-in-progress.
Check it out, and feel free to leave your thoughts here in the Comments section. — Is Normandy a viable candidate, or just a dreamer? Or is he a viable dreamer and/or outright vatic? History in the making, or the made? The real democratic ideal? The response to "whence democracy"?
Or is he a million questions?
To download a speech, ctrl-click (or right-click) the file name and "save."
Normandy tackles Big Card head on. (5 minutes, 11 seconds / 2.16 MB)
Normandy rethinks the pet. (4 minutes, 43 seconds / 1.97 MB)
Normandy puts forward his plan to eradicate spam. (8 minutes, 44 seconds / 3.63 MB)
Normandy reconsiders the infrastructure of class stratification. (17 minutes, 34 seconds / 7.27 MB)