High expectations

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High expectations

Senator Barack Obama, the presidential candidate of the Democratic Party, was elected the 44th president of the United States. The country has produced its first black president in 232 years of American history.

Obama’s victory is more than a win for the Democratic Party. It is a victory for Americans and American democracy.

We congratulate President-elect Obama on his election and offer our respect to the American people for courageously choosing the change that is needed in the United States and in the world as a whole.

The U.S. is facing serious challenges. As a result of a rash war, the country’s status as the world’s only superpower has taken a beating. It has lost the support of the world’s people because of its arrogance. Respect for America as a guardian of freedom and human rights has been damaged as well.

The U.S. economy faces heavy debts and is in a serious crisis. Bubbles in the laissez-faire world of capitalism had burst, setting off turmoil in global markets that dragged not only the U.S. but also the entire globe into a serious economic slowdown. Amid political confrontation and antagonism, the gap and conflicts between the haves and have-nots have worsened. Some 85 percent of Americans think their country is going in the wrong direction.

Obama was able to win the election because Americans are fervently hoping for change. Of the $600 million election fund that the Obama campaign raised, 95 percent came from small donations of less than $200 made through the Internet. This shows the citizens’ ardent desire for change, and at the same time has opened new opportunities for grassroots democracy in the digital era.

The Democratic Party now dominates not only the White House but also the Senate and the House of Representatives. In his victory speech, Obama said, “Change has come to America,” and urged Americans to unite.

We hope that he will integrate all the people, whether left-wing or right-wing, black or white, and induce change that the country needs.

The most urgent issue is the economy. He was able to beat John McCain, the Republican candidate, because of the economic issues that the country must deal with.

In 10 days, a G-20 summit will be held in Washington. Obama should employ the best possible aides, regardless of their ideology, and present measures to handle the financial crisis and economic slowdown.

Obama should take a humble stance to restore the respect of international society and trust in the U.S. He should display leadership that integrates all people in order to meet the expectations of Americans and the entire world.

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