Whom I’m Voting For, and Why

Editor’s Note: This post is a part of our Election Month at Patheos feature. Patheos was designed to present the world’s most compelling conversations on life’s most important questions. Please join the Facebook following for our new News and Politics Channel — and check back throughout the month for more commentary on Election 2012. Please use hashtag #PatheosElection on Twitter.

Let me note, I write this post not telling you for whom to vote. Nor do I think that you (or I) have an obligation to disclose our votes. A secret ballot is a cornerstone of our democracy.

I disclose my prospective votes today to offer them up for discussion. So, read them, then have at it:

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Why Obama (Again)?

Later this week, I will be posting about whom I’m supporting at the federal, state, and local elections. In the meantime, I’ve revisited my reasons for supporting Barack Obama four years ago. Here’s the money quote from that post:

I am supporting Barack Obama for president. Why? Because Obama has so many of the qualities that we need in a president. He is committed to uniting the country around a vision for the future, he is committed to foreign diplomacy rather than empty posturing, he plays politics by a different and more noble playbook.

You can read the rest here: Why Obama?. And you can tell me if you think I made the right choice. I still have faith in the president. But I was sure that Hillary would have been too divisive, and now I’m not so sure…

I will say that based on John McCain’s last few FOX News appearances, I am damn glad that he is not our president.

What I Hated about Last Night’s Debate? (Hint: Everything)

It may seem the height of irony, or maybe a double standard. Last night I listened to the third presidential debate as I drove home from a successful pheasant hunt in South Dakota. In my cooler were nine birds — birds that I had shot, that my dog had retrieved to me in his mouth, and that I had cleaned by hand. It’s a bloody business, hunting; admittedly violent.

And yet, as I drove home and listened to our president and his challenger talk about killing people, it just seemed to me that they were altogether nonchalant about it:

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Barack Obama Is an Enneagram Nine – What That Means

Barack Obama is an Enneagram Nine with a strong Eight wing.

I’ve been wondering what the Enneagram numbers are of our two candidates and what they means about our choices in the election. Although you’re not supposed to pin a number on another person, when someone is as much in the public eye as a presidential nominee, it’s pretty clear to Enneagram experts what number they are. So I asked around in the Enneagram community and found out that they’re a consensus on Mitt Romney’s and Barack Obama’s numbers. On Monday, I posted about Mitt Romney, an Enneagram Three.

Barack Obama is an Enneagram Nine, with a strong Eight wing. Other famous political Nines include Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, and Dwight Eisenhower.

I asked Suzanne Stabile*, my personal Enneagram guru, to write up something about Nines, and here’s what she sent in:

Enneagram Nines are called “mediators.” They are men and women who intuitively try to maintain a sense of peace and balance. They avoid conflict and believe that having a single or personal agenda threatens harmony, often unnecessarily. They frequently merge with the other in order to maintain peace. They are self-effacing, tolerant, even-tempered and likeable. And their gift is their problem in that they see two sides to everything.

Nines are the primal person. They connect with everything and yet they stay disconnected from everything at the same time. These are people who are not stuck in their own way of thinking so they have the capacity for holding varied opinions and for finding value in most points of view.

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