I encourage you to vote and to vote early, avoid the election-day lines. I voted for Obama. I voted for Obama because I feel that those of us who didn’t put Bush into office deserve an intelligent and caring president who will try his utmost to give us a chance for economic, ethical, environmental, and health-care respite, restoration, and renewal. We need him to help us rise out of the quagmire (actually a hellish cesspool) that the present administration has sunk us into; eight years of horrible damage in every category. Actually, at this point, probably almost everybody in our country deserves a respite, restoration, and renewal. I say "almost" because I still see vehicles with the "W" bumper stickers on them. These next eleven days will probably see a lot of dirt flying out of the McCain camp, more phony stunts like Joe the plumber. It is sad that a significant number of our citizens seem to fall in line behind such gimmicks to manipulate the rank and file. It would be nice (and healthy) if each of us, as Americans, could and would raise his/her self-image as a person (and realize our individual and collective potential to be part of the process of making things better). If enough of us do that, together we really can have the vision of a better country and a better world.