We Take Care Of Our Own (Song of the Week, Election Day 2012)

There’s a sickness creeping up on us. Grab your brain, your heart, your soul, and help us beat it back.

Vote Obama. Vote Democrat. Give in to your higher angels, not your petty demons.

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I Don’t Want To Be A Member Of A Political Party (My final political post before I vote…)

I don’t want to be a member of a political party.

I don’t like political parties. I don’t like group think. I don’t like homogenization of the idea pool. I don’t like the us vs. them mentality.

If we must have parties, I’d like more of them, so more views can be represented. The either/or dynamics of American politics are a travesty and a crime against our country and its people.

This doesn’t mean, however, that I think there is no meaningful difference between the parties. On the contrary, there are huge fucking differences between them, staggering differences, life and death differences.

There are foundational things that are similar between the parties, of course. Both are beholden to big monied interests, because we have allowed the system to mutate into a black hole of cash, and to attain and hold power in the current political ecosystem, you need a hell of a lot of money. The Democrats, at least, try to wean us from the teat. The Republicans insist that money should flow freely in all directions, that money is speech and  corporations are people, that even foreign cash from anonymous donors should be allowed into our elections. If it pulls in money for them or their masters, the GOP doesn’t care what the source is.

In my younger days, I used to nobly proclaim that I would always disregard party politics and vote for the “best man.” But you just can’t do that. It’s not that there are no best men or women, it’s that they are still so much a part of the current ecosystem that even they are ultimately soldiers for their parties. You cannot disregard the fact that every member of a party who holds office boosts the power of the party as an organism. Your congressperson may be Thomas Jefferson by way of Clark Kent, but if his winning his seat helps put a maleficent party in control of Congress, he should not win.

The sad truth of the moment is that in any race I can vote on, I will vote for the Democrat. This is not because I consider myself a Democrat, though my personal values don’t diverge hugely from the general Democratic views. It is because I am most devotedly not a Republican. That party has become such a corruption of everything our country is supposed to stand for that I have to vote for whatever stands in its way most effectively. In our binary party system, that means voting Democrat.

That said…

I generally like Barack Obama. I have huge issues with him on some things, and even in areas I agree with him, like healthcare, I’m disappointed in the way he has often started the fight by jettisoning options before they can be debated, thus giving in to resistance from the right before it even manifests. But, still, I think he’s a good man, a well-meaning man, and in this instance indisputably the “best” man of the two with a shot at the title.

I see nothing to admire or like about Mitt Romney. He is as politically craven as any politician I have ever seen, standing for nothing but whatever makes him look good to whoever is standing right in front of him right this second. He has no actual ideas, no solutions. He makes promises, then refuses to even make an effort to at least look like he has any specific ideas about how to fulfill them. This is the guy who has actually said “ask me how I’ll do it after the election.” And his running mate has explained that their plan would take too much time to explain. How anyone can see leadership in this protean, compassionless, power-hungry android is beyond me.

Last week, I shared a series of excerpts from an exceptional blog post by “David,” no last name offered, a political historian. It’s called “Why I Will Not Be Voting Republican For The Foreseeable Future,” and David writes intelligently, at length, offering point after point of solid reasons for not supporting any GOP candidate, for any office, in the current political ecosystem.  I agree with pretty much everything he says, and when I posted the bits I posted, I got absolutely no feedback from my Republican friends (and I have many, who are not slow to pick at my political posts). I think that’s because David presents his argument so well that they had nothing to offer against it. So they retreated into the cognitive dissonance which allows them to continue supporting this festering infection of a party and let my posts sit unassailed.

And I do think that it’s cognitive dissonance, because many of these people are quite intelligent and thoughtful. I think they just have their issues, economic or social, and they have traditionally supported the GOP, and still see it as their team, even though it really does not actually stand for the things it claims, and which they still value. Of course, that may be my particular cognitive dissonance, that I give them credit enough that I think they’re deluding themselves. Maybe they really recognize what their party is now, and they support it. I don’t like that thought, because I don’t like what it makes me think of them.

I highly recommend reading David’s post, whether you are on the left or the right. And I welcome any dissenting commentary, because I’m interested in seeing if any of you on the right can actually offer a good rebuttal to the things he has to say.

Cookie Monster Presents The Song Of The Week, 8/30/2012

It’s all about the cookies this week…

First, this isn’t a song, but it is the funniest damn thing I’ve seen in a couple or three weeks on the internet. I’ve probably watched it twenty or more times and I always laugh:

Our actual song this week I offer in honor of the Republican National Convention currently infesting Tampa, “God’s Away On Business” by Tom Waits, karaoked by Cookie Monster…

I’d sell your heart to the junkman baby
For a buck, for a buck…
If you’re looking for someone to pull you out of that ditch
You’re out of luck, you’re out of luck…

Grewt Ningrich and the Party of Lies

Newt Gingrich.

Newt. Fucking. Gingrich.

This is how bad things have gotten.

I think it’s time to revisit a post I did a while back. It’s primarily about lies in politics, but has a good amount of information about Gingrich specifically that most people aren’t aware of. I’m pretty proud of this piece:

Pants on Fire

As America Sinks…

The boat is sinking.

Supporting the Democrats is bailing water with a bucket with a hole in it.

Supporting Republicans is shooting more holes in the boat’s bottom with an automatic shotgun, hoping the water will drain out.

Supporting third party candidates is hoping a playmate-laden sailboat will come by and save us.

What do we do?

Regarding People Who Vote Against Their Own Interests

Walker, Wisconsin Danger

The following comes to you through a chain of association I hope will continue. I got it from Krista Smiling Wolf Hill, who got it from the blog of Al Stefanelli, who got it from his friend Joe Markey. It originated with someone posting in an online forum under the screen name “yeahIknow5.” I hope you’ll read it and pass it on in turn.

Reading it, I felt that it might well have been written about my own father, or any number of other folks I know who have locked-down minds and are easy prey for the authoritarian puppeteers of our world. Continue reading