Yeah, not much snark to be had in wenchville. Can someone please send me a stasis pod so I can crawl into it until after Election Day? I promise to go vote early before I enjoy the sweet blissful silence.
I am blue. Bluer than blue, and that’s not just a political pun there. The economy has my shoulders tight with tension- we’re fine, my job is fine, his job is fine- but ouch. We would like to retire some century, I would really like the kid’s college fund to not lose 80% of its value, and oh yes, his parents and my mom are retired and yeehaw did you see pension plans lost $2 Trillion in value? TWO. TRILLION. And while I implicitly trust mom’s very good financial advisor, I would really like her to be able to continue living in the style to which she’s become accustomed, and given that she lives off of her investments and annuities and interest, yeaaaaah. Tenure has my shoulders tight with tension- whoever designed a system where you essentially have to wait until May to find out is just mean.
But what truly has me blue is not the economy- though man that’s depressing- nor tenure- though what a lovely sword of Damocles you have there- nor my job- though jesus christ 5 talks due in under 6 weeks and 3 business trips. What has me blue is the election. More specifically, the rhetoric, and tone, and just plain hate. I am saddened by, quite frankly, the naivete. The hate that gets slung tht any supporter of Obama is blind. Why yes, there is a sort of fervor among some of his supporters, but that’s not to mean they support every position of his (guess what, I don’t) nor that they’ve failed to actually read up on his politics. I’m saddened that some people are so reflexive that they cannot make the following logical chain: McCain camp and allies: Do you really know Barack Obama? Beyond the speeches?
Well let’s see. There’s this, or this, or perhaps you’d like to read this or you could just download The Blueprint for Change in your own handy dandy pdf. You could look up his voting records in both the Illinois Senate and US Senate. You could review all of his campaign material from the past 2 years of campaigning.
Oh but wait. We don’t know him.
You know, I thought I knew John McCain. I thought he was occasionally testy, but ultimately did stand at least somewhat apart from his party, and would build on the rapport and attitude from his last major go-round and not engage in the kind of gross, insulting, hateful campaigning that I’ve come to expect from the GOP. But I was wrong. His campaign has engaged in the slickest of attempts to hijack the media:
“In an effort to head off the report, McCain campaign spokesman Taylor Griffin released the campaign’s own version of events. That report, which Griffin said was written by campaign staffers, says the Legislature has taken a legitimate policy dispute between a governor and one of her commissioners, and portrayed it as something inappropriate.”
Yes, because a report written by your team absolving you of wrongdoing is completely unbiased. In delightful timing, the New York Times released a thorough article on the same issue on the same day. Meanwhile, the Alaska Leg report is due out today. Attempt to get the media spin cycle to not focus on that? It failed, but damn man, that takes balls. And also, complete and utter contempt for the American public. Do you think so little of us that you think we will fall for that? Do you think that your efforts to subtly race and drug use, repeated raising ofWilliam Ayers and use of the word ‘terrorist’ will work?
My fear is, their contempt is well founded. That we are a nation so divided and so hateful, so partisan, that we cheer when we call an elected official a terrorist, that we equate a name like Hussein with evil, and gleefully use it to deride our opponents. I sincerely doubt any of those people who think Obama is a Muslim, because of his middle name, and is therefore evil would think the same of someone named ‘Christopher’ or ‘Mary’. We joke, with our friends, about terrorist fist jabs because according to Sean Hannity at Fox ‘News’, we lived in a “radical elitist enclave” and consorted with terrorists. But to many, they are incapable of seeing the ridiculousness of it.
Hell, I served on an education board with William Ayers, I realized this morning as I went through my notes from a damn old project. But the latest salvo from the McCain camp, any hope of decency- not that I had much left after this week- is utterly gone. And you know, they are counting on absolutes: they are counting on people not looking past soundbites. They are counting on us being stupid, obedient, sheeplike, easily lead, easily riled. Their contempt for us as thinking people drips from every ad and every speech. William Ayers, they note, said he “didn’t do enough”.
What is the full context of that statement?
“The one thing I don’t regret is opposing the war in Vietnam with every ounce of my being…. When I say, ‘We didn’t do enough,’ a lot of people rush to think, ‘That must mean, “We didn’t bomb enough shit.”‘ But that’s not the point at all. It’s not a tactical statement, it’s an obvious political and ethical statement. In this context, ‘we’ means ‘everyone.'” (Source, his own blog, see reprint here)
Do I disagree with Ayers on a lot? You fucking bet I do. Do I think the timing of his interviews given on Sept 10 coming out right after Sept 11 sucks? Oh big time (and this timing is something being capitalized on by the McCain camp- his words being posed as something post 9/11). Go look up his letter to the editor of the Chicago Tribune on September 23, 2001, in which he wrote “I condemn all forms of terrorism — individual, group and official…Today we are witnessing crimes against humanity on our own shores on an unthinkable scale, and I fear that we may soon see more innocent people in other parts of the world dying in response.”
Kind of prescient, no? Kind of smart, no? The kind of thing one expects from a well-educated, in the world and of the world person, aware of our politics, policies, and the effect it has on others. Oh but wait, that’s elitist. Why would we want someone who has a global perspective in the white house? We train the hell out of our Navy Seals, our pilots, our doctors, but somehow…having someone who graduated 5th from the bottom in their class, or who bounced from college to college, is preferable to having someone literate, well educated, and focused on wringing the best from the opportunities they earned.
My heart hurts. I am torn. On the one hand, I want the Democratic campaign to not just lie down and take this crap. On the other hand, I want him to rise above- I want him to be able to not lower and debase himself they way McCain has, and still be able to win.
I’ll be in my stasis pod.
Edited to add: I didn’t get into my pod fast enough, and clicked on a link twittered by Dooce and you know what? How many of those people who are saying such vile things consider themselves well educated? Consider themselves good Christians?
How does the one man who states, in response to the protester who brings up the issue of Wasilla charging rape victims for their medical exams under Palin’s watch and how that would affect said protester’s female friends, “She should die” and then, in response to outcry, amends it to “she should pay double” look any woman he cares about in the eye?
Is this what this country has come to?