Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Dear Liberals...

(First off, let me apologize in advance Sagacious Hillbilly. You ain't gonna like this!)

We have an election coming up. It's one of the most high-stakes ever. We have a stalled Democrat party, an administration already out of gas with only two years on the clock, facing off against the most radical right wing challenge in living memory. In short, a neofascist Trojan horse is parked outside the gates and we're getting ready to let it in. So, of course, we progressives need to get out there, vote our asses off and snatch back America from the brink? Right..???


I can't. Because if I do vote according to my conscience, I can't do anything except not vote. If I do reflexively check Democrat, all I'd do is show that conscience matters as little to me as it does to the pols in DC. All I'd do is say "yeh, OK, you guys did nothing for me but instead of registering my frustration by withdrawing my support, I'll just trot along and support you anyway." Sorry. I just can't do that.

I can't give Obama my vote because we're still illegally occupying two foreign nations at enormous cost to the country. Even the recent 'withdrawal' from Iraq is a shell game: We're still there. Only we're paying private contractors 5-10 times more to fill in for the troops we've brought home.

I can't give Obama my vote because, like tens of millions of others, I still can't get health insurance for myself, my wife or my kid. I'm still living in a country where if I get sick, I'm bankrupt, maybe homeless and, if I died, I die intestate.

I can't give Obama my vote because gay people in America still don't have equal civil rights and, forgive me for my quaint altruism, I can't feel free either in a society that discriminates against anyone. Gays still can't marry or serve openly in the military. Not only has Obama let this slide, he's even worked to block legal efforts to shut down DADT.

But most of all, I can't give Obama my vote because he's given a free pass to the Bush war criminals. He's excused and effectively condoned torture, illegal detention, the suspension of habeas corpus and warrantless spying on US citizens by refusing to indict and by quietly continuing the same shameful policies. Obama missed a chance to send the much-needed message that America is better than that. Instead, he just showed the world that Bushco's squalid barbarism is now the norm. That is unforgivable. I can't vote for Obama for the exact same reason I could never have voted for Bush... same crimes, different criminals.

This is a question of conscience and, at some point, you have to go with it however hard the decision and however painful the consequences.

So bring on that neofascist Trojan horse and live with the consequences. Maybe we have to live through the worst symptoms of the conservative disease, run the fever, to finally rid ourselves of it. There's no point in drugging ourselves with a low-dose Democrat "get out the vote" that'll do nothing except prolong the status quo.

Don't run scared... And remember: it's all about conscience.



  1. I want to agree with you Herb. I really do. I'd like to believe that a few years of teabaggers and Amurkkka would be cured of the obsession. That's what I believed when they voted for the Reagan freak show. That's what I believed when they got on the Gingrich bandwagon. That's what I believed when everyone went all christian fundie in the 80s. That's what I believe when the dumbest, most incompetent moron to ever hold the office was elected to the presidency in 2000. What I believe now is that there is no end to the ability of the American pubkic to embrace ignorance and self defeating candidates and political philosophy. There is no end to the right wing power mongers' ability to manipulate and control the ignorant proletariat. There is no end to the stupidity and the dim witted minds of the American proletariat.
    This current and most extreme (so far) crop of right wing SOBs is not something we need to live through and let run it's course. There is no end.
    If you're willing to let them destroy us, fine. Take that risk. But these people are not harmless fruit cakes. They are backed by a tiny ruling class of people who are so obsessed with greed that they believe they are immuned to anything that might occur as a result of our country's demise as long as they hold all the wealth and power. They simply do not care about the lives of the desperate mass of men.
    It's a long hard decision I make in deciding to vote for the democrat in WV's senate race. One that pains me more than any other political decision I've ever made, but one I have to make for the common good of my country.

  2. I have to agree with Hillbilly on this. Politics is not pretty and though cliche, is more often than not a choice between the lesser of two evils. This time around the greater of the two evils is pretty damn evil. I can't in good conscience give them a free pass. The stakes are too great this time around. With the nexus of the jobless rate, the Citizens United decision, the rise of the corporate funded teabagger movement, and the rising anti-anyone who isn't a white Christian sentiment, I fear we are on a dark path that has been seen before in history...and it never ends well. I can't in good conscience sit back and watch it happen because I want to punish flaccid Democrat politicians. At least the D indicates some level of sanity and critical thought...

    Besides, on a more selfish note, these guys/corporations gaining control would not be good for my career as an environmental consultant.

  3. I just can't get past the torture/war crimes thing. I can't vote for a guy who's carrying on those policies, just like I couldn't have voted for the guy who started them.

  4. This is not a presidential election Herb! You're not voting for or against Obama, you're voting for control of the house and senate.

    But really, who cares? People in this country have become too fucking stupid to have good lives and benefit from a participatory form of government. Go ahead and let the rich have it all.


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