Saturday, October 2, 2010

Finding Common Ground

Ohio Tea Party candidate Tom Ganley. It ain't pretty...

I was just reading about the spectacularly corrupt Tea Party candidate for the 13th District of Ohio, Tom Ganley:

Ganley has been accused of sexually assaulting a supporter he met at a tea party rally (he's been sued over 400 times for ethics and business violations).

That's some impressive weaselry from a guy who makes out like he's one of them "new brooms" sent by God to sweep clean DC. Got me wondering whether thoroughly unredeemable sh*ts like Ganley would get anywhere at all if voters paid more attention and didn't let anger distract them. Then I got to wondering how much 'baggers and progressives have in common these days: we're both lashing out blindly and letting anger get the better of us. I'm not usually very charitable to conservatives, particularly of the 'bagger variety. But I'm in a rare mood of equanimity today so here goes...

Sure, I hate what the Tea Party represents: a bunch of rich f*cks like the Koch brothers hoodwinking chickens into voting for Colonel Sanders. But deep down, I know most 'baggers are just regular folks who are genuinely sick and tired of the bullsh*t in DC. Most of them, unlike the special interests laying down the astroturf, are not motivated by white supremacism or the corporatist agenda of shrinking government/omnipotent business. They're just angry people who want change. Hell, to that extent, I'm with them 100%. That's where we libs and progs were in 2008. That's where many of us are again. I'm mad as hell too!

Really, progressives and conservatives have much in common right now. We're both so mad we're ready to lash out at our respective parties and exercise the only real power we have: withholding our support. Conservatives want to kill off the GOP status quo, liberals want to kill off the Dem status quo. Conservatives want to replace the old GOP'ers with new radicals, liberals want to replace the old Dems with... erm... anything with a pulse and a pair of balls. But let's just calm down, let's take a few deep breaths and look at the reality.

Anger is the slutty mom of bad decisions. Anger gives conservtives political beer goggles so that losers like Christine O'Donnell and Carl Paladino start looking like attractive candidates. Anger makes progressives want to take down their own party for betraying us without even pondering the horrors of the alternative. So in short, anger is not a good motivator for deciding the future of the country. Don't vote angry.

Dear 'baggers, think instead: Recognize that voting for Tea Party crazies may be tempting, it might seem like a cathartic way to get back at those cynical, establishment buffoons who've let you down (hell, as a progressive, I can dig that). But following through and actually electing these idiots to office would be tantamount to a suicide bid - just as much as progressives dumping Obama and handing back power to the Reps by default would be suicidal.

Electing Tea Party candidates to clean up? That'd be like releasing rabid raccoons into your house to get rid of mice. So, again, let's all take a time out and think. Enough with the anger already.


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