| | Comments (3)

I am deeply, profoundly disappointed. If I have time over the next few days, I'll elaborate. In the meantime, I offer Mark Morford from SF Gate:

It simply boggles the mind: we've already had four years of some of the most appalling and abusive foreign and domestic policy in American history, some of the most well-documented atrocities ever wrought on the American populace and it's all combined with the biggest and most violently botched and grossly mismanaged war since Vietnam, and much of the nation still insists in living in a giant vat of utter blind faith, still insists on believing the man in the White House couldn't possibly be treating them like a dog treats a fire hydrant.

Inexplicable? Not really. People want to believe. They want to trust their leaders, even against all screaming, neon-lit evidence and stack upon stack of flagrant, impeachment-grade lie. They simply cannot allow that Dubya might really be an utter boob and that they are being treated like an abused, beaten housewife who keeps coming back for more, insisting her drunk husband didn't mean it, that she probably had it coming, that the cuts and bruises and blood and broken bones are all for her own good.

I listened to NPR and talk radio today for as long as I could. I got to hear people like George Lakoff, Thomas Frank, and others try to explain yesterday's results. For me, though, it comes down to one thing--the Reps are far better than the Dems at juking the system. I'm not suggesting that's the only reason that Bush won, but the fact that 1/4 of the states had gay marriage bans on the ballot guaranteed a sizable vote from the more intolerant of my fellow Americans. Any guess about which way that vote broke? The amazing thing about that (and I heard plenty of callers today announce that it was one of the reasons they voted for Bush) is that Kerry is no more liberal than Bush on that topic.

And the fact that these referenda were on the ballot yesterday is not an accident. Blah blah blah mobilize the base blah blah blah. The quickest way to get those people to vote is to play on their fear and/or hatred. And it worked again. Hooray for phobocracy.


The sad thing now is that the direct results of "phobocracy" have left me afraid, very afraid.

I feel so demoralized. I was only slightly cheered by M. Moore's "17 Reasons Not to Slit Your Wrists"

It's about 2am on the Tuesday morning after the election and I can't sleep for a lot of reasons (I'll e-mail you) but none of them are worrying about the next Bush term. Living in the flyover zone allows one to let the East Coast and West Coast run the country and get the credit or take the blame for what happens, except that our young people go fight the wars disproportionately and go east or west as soon as they get educated and leave our states to be run by their parents and grandparents and their high school classmates.
To someone who is a moderate Republican (and all of whose relatives are and have been Democrat)who believed Bush's centrist campaign verbiage last election, this election was a tough call. It was especially tough because the emotional aversion to Bush across the nation was high, so extreme that it was hard to find logical discussions of his strengths and weaknesses and comparisons of him to Kerry on which to base a reasoned decision. The commentary typefied by the the Morford column was of no help to me or people like me.
The fact is that Bush was/is not dumb and not a boob. Because he was never a student and appears to disdain learning does not mean that he is dumb. He surrounded himself with people who knew how to put together a coalition of voters to elect him president, again, and whatever you may think of the people who voted for him and why they did, whether for emotional reasons or fear or their need for a daddy in a challenging world, he won. He ran against the East Coast and the West Coast, and he used their bile to get the people in the flyover states to the polls.
A choice had to be made. The choice presented to middle America was Bush or Kerry, a right-wing Texas millionaire graduate of Yale versus a left-wing Massachusetts millionaire graduate of Yale.
I backed John Kerry but I did so reluctantly and out of a fear that Bush's resolute assurance was arrogant and uninformed, and out of despair that the incompetance in Iraq was inreparable under Bush and the aging neoconservatives he chose to run that war. I was afraid he would keep making the same mistakes, out of his loyalty to loyal followers, however flawed they and their decisions were. I also was dismayed at the fiscal record and the catering to the most extreme elements of the religious right, and never sure that it wasn't just political expediency.
However, the campaign should have told Bush that nearly half of Americans felt the same way or more so. Hopefully he understands how divided the country has become under his presidency and he will become more centrist in order to work with Congress, if they can find the trust to work with him, and he will want to leave a legacy for the country beyond a right wing one.
In 2000 he chose a constituancy many of whose views he largely ignored as he moved to the right in the ensuing 4 years. In 2004 he chose another one, and I hope he reaches out beyond his base in the next four years. I hope also that all Americans can put the anger and passion of the past few months aside and give a man half of them voted against a chance to prove himself.

Leave a comment



Powered by Movable Type 4.1

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by cgbrooke published on November 3, 2004 7:15 PM.

Zell-apropisms was the previous entry in this blog.

Convergences, Day 1 is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.