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Barack Obama Forecast as the 2008 President-Elect More Than a Year and a Half Ago

With the election behind us and Barack Obama having been overwhelmingly chosen as our president-elect, there could not be a better time to introduce you to the author who forecast this man to be our president more than a year and a half ago. When there were 10 candidates seeking the office from the Democratic Party and almost as many from the Republican Party, Rene Reid not only had the “audacity to hope” that Barack Obama would be our next president. After reading his book, she also put it in writing and published it as a reality novel called Peace Amidst Conflict. A best-selling author of nonfiction, Rene Reid published this new release in March 2008 and presented it at many of the State Democratic Conventions and, of course, at the National Convention. Far outside the realm of a typical novel, the author weaves her characters into the Washington political scene exposing the actual people and events that misled America into a senseless and ill-conceived war in Iraq. While pundits were debating the likelihood of the Clinton machine carrying Hilary forward into the Oval Office, Ms. Reid projected that Barack Obama is the one who could best lead our nation through these global conflicts guiding America toward peaceful solutions both at home and abroad.

Her work was awarded Publisher's Choice by the editorial group and declared to be a must read before the November election. The editor commented: “This compassionate message comes at a time when Americans, in particular, need it most. For this reason, Peace Amidst Conflict will undoubtedly find a strong readership.” In mid 2007, Ms. Reid explored the possibility of publishing her book through Random House, the current publisher of one of her non-fiction books. She was told that it would take at least a year to publish through them. Given the urgency in getting the book out prior to the election, Ms. Reid chose to publish the book through her own publishing company.

Ms. Reid’s certainty about Barack Obama as the next president deepened further while her book was at press when she heard his speech on racism (Philadelphia, March 18, 2008): As long as blacks and whites continue to condemn each other without understanding the roots of the other’s anger, it “only serves to widen the chasm of misunderstanding that exists between the races.” Through her characters, Reid similarly demonstrates in her story how digging deep to gain perspective of the other side is an essential step toward healing rifts—whether on an interpersonal or international level. And finally countless others began to believe as Reid did when Caroline Kennedy compared him to her father and General Colin Powell crossed party lines and came forward to endorse the Senator pointing out that President Obama is the one best suited to “show the world there is a new administration that is willing to reach out.”

Reid’s dedication to peaceful solutions springs from her unique background: a former Catholic nun with a Masters in Theology and a former Nevada elected official. Read her recently published article on Obama: www.creationsmagazine.com/articles/C121/Reid.html and browse her website www.ReneReid.com. As a peace advocate and one of the earliest Obama supporters, Reid brings a fresh perspective to political commentary and a unique belief that a new paradigm is needed in dealing with conflict. The author will add insight into any political discussion involving the impact that Barack Obama’s victory will have on the daily lives of average Americans and how he may be able to turn the current economic crisis into a catalyst for world unity.

Having come through the most provocative election in modern history and now transitioning to a new presidential administration, I strongly encourage you to interview the author and explore her message of hope in a time when America and the newly elected president will need it most.


Excerpt from pages 438 to 443 of Peace Amidst Conflict:

     Back in Washington, Kyle was intrigued with the presidential
candidates emerging on the scene. Josh and Kyle had organized what
they had learned from their interviews into a new foreign policy plan.
One by one, the brothers were personally introducing the PEACE plan
to each candidate. The depth and thoughtfulness that the twins had
given to the plan could not be missed and precluded any prospective
leader from treating it lightly. In turn, they had the opportunity to gain
a sense of each candidate and anticipate which ones might be open-minded
and ready to take the leadership of the country to a new level.

     The PEACE plan seemed to fit particularly well with the platforms
of Senator Obama and former Senator Edwards and, of course,
Congressman Kucinich. In light of those candidates’ plans, the
brothers had scheduled interviews with each of them. Both Josh and
Kyle agreed that with so many solid candidates in the running, the
Democrats would have to shoot themselves in the foot to lose the
2008 election. But with still a year and half to go before the election,
who knew what other candidate might step out from the wings?
However, one thing was clear: the Republican Party would be a long
time recovering from the destructiveness caused by the Bush
administration.

     At Marianne Williamson’s suggestion, Kyle met with Dennis Kucinich
early after his return from California. He found the congressman to be a
man of peace and a true advocate of peace, as Sister Kathleen had stressed
in their interview. He could well understand why Kucinich had introduced
the bill establishing a department of peace into the House.

Next, the brothers had a rousing meeting with John Edwards and his
wife, Elizabeth. Like the Kennedys, they were wealthy but committed to
bringing the two Americas—the America of the haves and the America of
the have-nots—into greater alliance. They had created a strong email
campaign and, with John not in the Senate, he could afford to be more
vocal about what Congress should be doing to end U.S. participation in
the war in Iraq.

     Both Kyle and Josh grew more excited as they anticipated their
interview with Barack Obama. Both brothers held the deepest respect
for him. Arriving at his office on the Hill, the senator, instead of
speaking to them across his desk, joined them in a nearby seating area.

     “So, where would you like to begin?” Barack asked them with a
warm smile.

     “I guess all things begin and end with Iraq these days,” Josh said.
“Let’s start there.”

     “You know my position,” said Obama. “I think it’s safe to assume
that those in power would think longer and harder about launching a
war if they envisioned their own sons and daughters in harm’s way.”
Kyle thought about his own boys and nodded. He could not imagine
the pain he would feel if anything were to happen to them.

“I believe a stronger sense of empathy would tilt the balance of our
current politics in favor of those people who are struggling in this
society,” the senator added.

     “Do you feel empathy for the president?” Kyle asked, not meaning
for it to be a trick question.

     “I am obligated to try to see the world through George Bush’s eyes,
no matter how much I may disagree with him. That’s what empathy
does—it calls us all to task, the conservative and the liberal, the
powerful and the powerless, the oppressed and the oppressor. We’re all
shaken out of our complacency. We’re all forced to look beyond our
limited vision.”

     Kyle understood in very personal terms exactly what the senator
was describing. He reflected on his lack of empathy for Jenny on the
day her mother died, and on the day of Mike’s burial. He regretted that
he wasn’t shaken out of his complacency and self-absorption then. But
he could feel it now. He could feel so much more now.

     Regaining his focus, Kyle raised the issue of oil. “We produce
about three percent and use about twenty-five percent of the world’s
supply of oil. If this current war isn’t about oil, the next one will be.
With China and India adding millions of cars to the road and
expanding their need for oil, what do you propose that we do to
prevent an all-out oil war?”

     “It’s safe to say that without any changes to our energy policy, U.S.
demand for oil will jump forty percent over the next twenty years,”
Barack answered. “And over the same period, worldwide demand is
expected to jump at least thirty percent for the very reasons you state.
I’d suggest that we need to do a complete turnabout. Instead of
subsidizing the oil industry, we should end every tax break the industry
currently receives and demand that one percent of the revenues from
oil companies with over $1 billion in quarterly profits go toward
financing alternative energy research.”

     “Finding a sensible solution to our oil crisis will have a direct effect
on our economy,” Josh said.

     “Absolutely! And on our national security! A large portion of the
$800 million we spend on foreign oil every day goes to some of the
world’s most volatile regimes—Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Venezuela, and,
indirectly at least, Iran. They get our money because we need their oil.”

“Are you optimistic about the long-term prospects for our
economy?” Josh asked.

     “Within the coming year, this will be the issue on everyone’s
mind,” Barack predicted. “My greatest concern is for the lower and
middle-class Americans who are worried about their jobs, their
mortgages, and their healthcare coverage.”

     “Specifically, what can you do about this as president?” Josh asked.
“Nearly two-thirds of Americans do not itemize their taxes. I’ll
make it just as easy for them to take advantage of deducting their
mortgage interest. I’ll restore fairness to the tax code and provide 150
million U.S. workers with the tax relief they deserve by offsetting the
payroll tax on the first several thousand dollars of their earnings. Of
course, I will eliminate the ridiculous income taxes for seniors who
make less than $50,000. And if the healthcare package that we have in
Congress is good enough for us, it should be available and affordable
to all Americans.”

     “Do you think the U.S. can ever really compete in a free trade
environment?” Kyle asked.

     “Yes, but only if we distribute the costs and benefits of
globalization more fairly across the population. If we stay on the
course we’re on, we’ll become a nation even more stratified
economically and socially than we currently are, one in which an
increasingly prosperous class will be able to purchase whatever it wants
in the marketplace—private schools, private health care, private
security, and private jets—while a growing number of citizens are
consigned to low-paying service jobs, pressed to work longer hours,
and dependent on an under-funded, overburdened public sector for
health care, retirement, and their children’s education.”

     “Back to Iraq for a moment,” Josh said. “Now that we’re there,
are we stuck there indefinitely?”

     “Contrary to some of my esteemed Republican colleagues,” Obama
said with a grin, “I don’t believe it’s an option for us to maintain an
indefinite occupation in Iraq so that we are sending $100 billion to Iraq
every year; so that every year we are watching hundreds if not
thousands of Americans die; so that we continue to see a deterioration
of America’s standing in the world. I don’t think that serves the best
interest of the United States and its citizens, and it would certainly be
the wrong message to send to the Iraqi government.”

     “So, if you are sworn in as president in 2009 and the situation is
still essentially the same in Iraq, what’ll be your first steps?” Kyle asked.
“We have to be as careful getting out as we were careless getting
in,” Obama replied. “We would want to pull our combat troops out of
Iraq in a phased, systematic way. I have a bill before Congress now that
suggests we begin getting them out this year and have them all out by
next year. If the Iraqi government meets certain benchmarks, we would
continue to provide the country with logistical and training support.
We would have the necessary forces to respond to the crises that spill
over into the remainder of the region. And, most importantly, we
would have to have an aggressive diplomatic initiative with all countries
in the region to make sure that we are a part of a broader conversation
about how we can stabilize Iraq and the region.”

     “That sounds like the main guidelines recommended by the Iraq
Study Group,” Kyle said.

     The senator nodded as he smiled.

     “Senator, you’ve also talked about our need to broaden the
distribution of opportunity for all Americans,” Josh said, “but how?”

     “At the end of Bill Clinton’s presidency,” Obama explained, “we
had the answer. Even after the economy was forced to absorb the
shock of 9/11, we had the chance to make a down payment on
sustained economic growth that would have provided a broader
opportunity for all Americans.”

     “But that’s not the path Bush chose,” Kyle noted.

     The senator’s secretary then appeared at the door to signal his next
appointment. Turning back to the brothers, he answered, “No, instead
we were told by our president that we could fight two wars, increase
our military budget by seventy-four percent, protect our homeland,
spend more on education, introduce a new prescription drug plan for
seniors, and initiate a successive round of massive tax cuts—all at the
same time.”

     “I guess that pretty well sums it up,” Josh said.

     Obama looked poignantly at the brothers. “Gentlemen, it’s time for
us to return our government to one that truly represents all Americans,
but we must recognize what Martin Luther King described as ‘the
fierce urgency of now.’ I’m running for president because I believe we
find ourselves in a moment of great challenge and great promise—a
moment that comes along only once in a generation. From what I’ve
read, you’ve drafted an excellent foreign policy that addresses the key
issues today.” The men stood to shake hands and Obama thanked
them for their time, agreeing to be a part of the PEACE effort.

     Out in the parking lot, Josh, looking more serious than usual,
turned to his brother. “This man is the best of JFK and MLK
combined. Can you imagine running our country based on his values?”

     “Can you imagine living our lives based on these kinds of values?”
Kyle countered. “Barack Obama won’t take PAC money. He was a
constitutional lawyer and actually believes in the Constitution. He is the
voice of integrity that America needs in these critical times.”

     “Well, we can’t change American politics overnight, but we sure as
hell can begin taking some kind of action ourselves,” Josh vowed.

     You’re absolutely right, Josh, Kyle thought. It’s time to take action.

 

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