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Most important election since World War 2/ever?
Is this the most important election since World War 2 or ever?

Certainly not. 2000 was more important (and possibly others) and we biffed it.
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synabetic From: synabetic Date: November 4th, 2008 07:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, but this is the most media-induced frenzied election I've seen.

But you are right, there have been more important elections in terms of politics. In terms of social advancement, the very fact that Barack Obama may become President of the United States deserves a top slot.
evillinn From: evillinn Date: November 4th, 2008 07:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think there are different measures of "importance".

I think that breaking the streak of over-privileged white male presidents is profoundly important.

I think that the increased number of people voting is profoundly important.

There may have been more critical turning points in policy, but I don't believe that is the only factor by which an election can be measured.
gkr From: gkr Date: November 4th, 2008 07:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Increased numbers of people voting is about as important as the population increasing or inflation occurring. If we see a large increase in the percentage, then perhaps. But we don't know that yet.

And we don't yet know who they've picked either. More people continuing a trend of being wrong since 1968 is hardly momentous.

Point being, there's a lot of bloviating about the importance of the election. At this point, it's overblown.
foote3 From: foote3 Date: November 4th, 2008 10:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think the percentage increase numbers are going to be through the roof. I've never seen lines at my polling place like I did today, and I've been voting here for about 12 years.

As to importance, I believe other elections in my lifetime have been more important, but only after the fact. 2000 was huge -- but its importance was only realized in retrospect. We didn't know it until the events of 9/11 took our country from a place where it could have run by Bush on auto-pilot for 4 years to the nightmare we've been subjected to for the past 8. A do-over knowing the stakes might have increased turn-out for Gore or reduced Nader's draw.

Up front though, this feels like one heck of an important election. An Obama presidency will hopefully mark, as Evillinn points out, the end of the white monopoly on the Executive Office. It will hopefully return our country to a station of respect in the world community. it will hopefully force the GOP to rethink who their base needs to include if they hope to win future elections.

And if McCain wins, it will still be important. But I think its importance will only be seen, again, in retrospect.
laurelfan From: laurelfan Date: November 4th, 2008 07:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's the most important election since the last one until the next one, at the very least.

And the most important election you can do anything about now...
gkr From: gkr Date: November 4th, 2008 07:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
So very true.
ryanlion From: ryanlion Date: November 4th, 2008 08:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
Is it *the* most important? No, probably not.
Is it *important*, I'd say yes.
If for nothing else in that the rest of the world seems to care more this time than in the past. Sure, they've cared in the past too, but I think the Bush/Cheney approach to diplomacy has rubbed a lot of other countries the wrong way. I think this election will either help mend relationships, or cause even more countries to get fed up with us. Also our impact on the world economy is fairly significant, and while I don't blame economic woes on the president, a new administration, new appointees, will have an impact. Given that we're walking a tightrope in public perception on the economy I think this election is also very important.

I'd also say this election is *historic* in that either there will be the first black president, or the first woman vice president.
chiaspod From: chiaspod Date: November 4th, 2008 08:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Definitely not "ever" - the elections of '40 and '64 were far more important in terms of social change. In terms of media importance, '48 was important for newspapers, and '52 and '60 were important for television. I think this election was important for Internet presentation, but I'm not sure that Obama could be considered our "Internet" President.

And the idea of Truman, Nixon, Reagan, Carter, or Clinton being "over-privileged" is hella amusing.
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