http://www.sina.com.cn 2008年01月15日 12:58 钱江晚报
The U.S. Presidential election may be the most undemocratic in the world. Only some 126 million Americans vote, yet the result is felt by 6.6 billion people. Indeed, in some ways it matters even more to non-Americans. The president is constrained domestically by many constitutional checks and balances, but this is far less true in foreign affairs.
Nevertheless, the world has yet to pick its favorite. It is clear, however, whose election would have the most dramatic effect: Barack Obama's. In one fell swoop, an Obama victory would eliminate at least half the massive anti-Americanism now felt around the world. Eight hundred million Africans would get a tremendous boost to their self-esteem and cultural pride. A son of their soil would, for the first time, occupy the White House, and many would whisper, approvingly, "Only in America."
Obama is not a Muslim, but the 1.2 billion Muslims around the world would take great interest in his middle name: Hussein. Indeed, the election of "H" would immediately undo much of the damage "W" has wrought.
Of course, not everyone would be overjoyed. The Europeans would be the most cynical. For ages, they've believed that the world pays the price for American inexperience, and many would thus rather Hillary Clinton became president (and they'd be happy to accept Bill as part of the package). She is careful, cold and calculating; Europeans like that. She would also be well received by Latin Americans, who still love Bill and who would note the interesting parallel with Argentina and the Kirchners.