Thursday, March 20, 2008

ELECTION THOUGHTS

I'm trying to think of a more unfortunate pair of initials than those we associate with "body odor," and so far, I've only come up with "BM" and "VD." I'm noticing not seeing "BO" on bumper stickers, for some reason.

I felt really bad for Geraldine Ferraro when she got thrown under the bus last week for spouting off about B.O. only being in the running because he was a black man, because if being a black man were what made one the obvious candidate, Jessie Jackson would have been president, oh, say, twentish years ago. B.O. is not in the running because he's black; B.O. is in the running because he's in league with Lucifer. *snort* Come to think of it, though, so's Jackson.

Mom's always been a conservative, but she still was able to find pleasure in a lot of the folk music of the 60s. This weekend, she was watching a reunion concert on PBS of folkies, and one of them got up and sang "Eve of Destruction" from that period. I wonder why when JFK started the ball rolling and LBJ escalated it (thanks james and g bro), did Vietnam really cement itself in people's minds as Nixon's war? Also, why is it relevant to sing those kinds of songs only when there's (alleged) conservatives in the highest offices? I don't know about you, but I think it's a little manipulative. If the folkies got it all wrong ( because goodness knows, here we are, 40 years later, as-yet-unannihilated ) then maybe such folk have no business dictating policy and social movements. Come to that, humans are still the animal they were a few hundred years ago, and perhaps mere fads and trends should not affect how we comport ourselves as a society at home and abroad. Maybe those guys in Philly 232 years ago were on to something, and maybe we should stick with their very good program.

I have long felt that a two-party system simply keeps folks off-balance by polarizing the citizenry with a teeny cluster of core issues (issues like abortion) and while regular folks are quibbling over these fine points, the politicians all homogenize into the same insidious type of person in D.C. From those core issues, you have a way of taking folks who in most other respects completely agree yet will fall on one side of the fence or the other, distracting them from the bigger game at stake. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the politicians associated with either side of the fence are hell-for-leather doing their utmost to compromise our liberties and make us further enslaved to our fed, state and local governments - it's amazing how little they actually accomplish for the "greater good*," and yet they're bloody efficient at screwing us. I think they owe us dinner and a movie.

Why is it that every four years, I'm hearing all over the place people saying "this is the most important election of our lifetime?" It's an absolute impossibility for every single election to be the "most important," unless things are simply ratcheting up constantly into greater degrees of tortion. I wonder how long this ever-tightening spring can withstand the pressure, as this kind of thinking is emotionally and intellectually exhausting? No wonder people are anxious and depressed about the process.

That said, we can't afford to take our eyes off the ball-- too much is at stake at every juncture. I'm not throwing my hands up and giving up on the process, but I am a bit weary of it.

* These days, "greater good" always makes me think of Hot Fuzz. Hee.

10 comments:

thud said...

The media and pols need a good story to sell or we will just ignore them and try to function happily without them.I don't think times are ever as bad or pivotal as they claim...more a steady drip,drip erosion of all that is good.Its a shame that we usually have to vote for the least worse option but thats politicians for you.

Myron said...

Maybe we can use he who is not to be middle-named's middle and last initial for a bumper sticker. Vote for HO in '08. How's zat sound?

Don't use his full name
Tis racist to call him Hussein
cuz he's not muslim

Supermum, Psycho Bitch said...

Hot Fuzz is one of my all time favourite movies. I love those guys.

James said...

I could'a sworn Vietnam was LBJ's war. Don't get me wrong, I'm right there with you about JFK, though.

James

James said...

I forgot, I meant to share this site with you: http://www.decopix.com/

James

g bro said...

More than anyone, it was Lyndon's war. Eisenhower sent advisors, Kennedy escalated, Johnson REALLY escalated, and Nixon dragged it out after his "secret plan to end the war." Johnson truly believed in it, in my opinion, just like he believed in the War on Poverty. Neither one worked so well. Nixon, beset with insecurities of his own, basically lied for 6 years until he was ousted.
If you prefer people who do wrong things because of their strong beliefs, you prefer Johnson. If you just don't like people who do wrong things, you don't like either of them.

I don't get your point about only singing anti-war songs when conservatives are in office. I thought PBS had been showing this stuff for ages, regardless of president.

phlegmfatale said...

thud - quite right.

myron - sounds right to me.

supermum - Me too - love the dickens out of Simon Pegg

james - was tired and crossed-eyeded when I wrote this, and of course, you are right. Thanks for the link. I LOVE the house plans on that site - thanks!

g bro - That was just my observation, about PBS. I suppose I just never happened to see these programs airing at other periods, and that informed my perception. :)

Lin said...

Elections - another reason why I can't say I miss telebizzhun.
The thing about watching the two-shell game so intently is that we tend to forget that there is only one operator - in this case, it's the rich and powerful, the scum at the top of our feudal pond.

Buck said...

Noting you did update the post with the nod to James and g bro... I was gonna mention the ol'...

Hey, Hey...LBJ!
How many kids didja kill today?!


...thing. Strange how memory works. I can recall that sorta stuff like it was yesterday. And so do the Code Pink harridans. It IS yesterday for them... and a chance to re-live old glories. Such as they were.

Plus ├ža change…

James said...

Back when I was a Poli Sci major, one of my professors said that generally speaking, presidents are either good at foreign or domestic policy, but rarely both. LBJ was his example of a someone who was good at domestic policy but dreadful at foreign policy. Comparing this civil rights movement to Viet Nam, I have to agree.

James