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What are they afraid of?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 22, 2008 by Goodbye Apathy

It still mystifies me that we’re so easily lured into skepticism when we see a political commercial from the McCain camp.  The mainstream media is saying that Obama has been successfully characterized by the opposing side as a celebrity with no experience to back up his run at the White House.  I think that’s only if you let the Mainstream media tell you so.  How can you read into a 25-second smear commercial with a shot of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton, and pronounce that successful?  We are smarter than this, aren’t we America?

I feel that experience in politics is overrated, and possibly even dangerous.  I don’t know shit about politics save these few things – experienced, seasoned politicians lie without remorse.  What’s to be experienced at? Lies, deceit, pocketing money from as many lobbyists as humanly possible?  Rallying around giant corporations and offering them tax cuts?  Sending off thousands of men and women to fight a war for which there was no basis? You know who’s an incredibly experienced politician?  George W. Bush – the unrepentant orchestrator of our current situation.   The man who has told us he doesn’t have a “magic wand” with which to solve the energy crisis has certainly had one when the banks have needed one.  It had to have been a fucking wand he used to convince the American people that there was just cause to go to war in Iraq.  The Republicans think we’re stupid.  They honestly believe that we are not conscious of having been misled.

Why don’t the facts stand out more then the slander?  Look, here’s my point.  We are all, every one of us, human beings with painful skeletons in our closets.  Things that we would rather not bring out into the open.  Things that make us ashamed of ourselves, of those around us, of what we’ve done and said.   I’d like to say right here and right now that I do not make the strange error of assuming that Barack Obama is the messiah, indeed I find that statement rather concerning.   But the implications of the Right about Obama, some of the disgusting and awful things being said about him are untruths.  I will not dispute that the man has flaws of character like anyone else among us.  Don’t let the Right tell you that their candidates are more morally upstanding citizens, that they’re more in tune with your values because they are above making mistakes.  That, my friends, is the first and most obvious indication that you’re being lied to, because no such person lives on the face of this planet now.

Don’t do it this time.  Don’t buy what they’re selling.  The goal is to incite paranoia about the only chance in hell that this country has to be half of what it was when Clinton left office.  You know who’s paranoid America?  The people who are making millions of dollars a year in this recession.  The people who brought you the mortgage crisis who might actually have to answer for their crimes (and make no mistake, this market was criminal).  Do you know who’s paranoid right now?  The oil companies, who fear that this time people have had it up to here with their bullshit, and that they just might not take it anymore. But they’re banking on this – they’re banking on your continued buy-in.  They’re hoping that they can take this situation and make you believe that you’re actually prospering right now.  Do you feel prosperous?  I certainly don’t.

This is how the Right consistently wins, by scaring you, by exploiting your values and telling you that a vote for them is a vote for everything that you stand for.  Haven’t we been living in fear long enough?  Fear is an instinctive secondary reaction to something.  In this case I can only assume that something is 9/11.  But we’re not safer, we’re not better off, the people responsible for that atrocity are alive, they are well.  If we’ve allocated billions of American taxpayer dollars to finding these people under a Republican administration and now, seven years later we have not found them yet, do you honestly believe that another eight years will bring back the peace of mind you lost all those years ago?

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What does it mean to you?

Posted in politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on August 20, 2008 by Goodbye Apathy

What should you really, truly think about when you go to the polls this November?  What is it that drives you, that motivates you from day-to-day?  Is it the reputation of this great nation into which you had the good fortune to be born or brought and the spread of Democracy across the Earth?  Is it the tax cuts for big oil?  Is it Wall Street?

It could be.  If it were, you’d be right to call yourself a Republican, because these things would benefit you every single day in a very real way.  You’d be incredibly concerned with making sure that the appropriate corporations got the right payouts, tax cuts, and bailouts to ensure that you remained prosperous and wealthy in your day to day life.

Are you wealthy?  Probably not.  No offense, but the income gap is widening, which also means that it is incredibly unlikely that if you are not ALREADY wealthy, you will ever become so.  Oh sure, that’s a possibility that I don’t want you to totally rule out.  I mean it is the American dream to work your ass of and become fully self-sufficient, ideally from the fruits of your own labor.  But let’s be honest, you probably go to work every day (or maybe even every night) so that you can pay the bills, pay the mortgage, put food on the table, and maybe spend some money on your kids every once in awhile.  Anyway, that’s what drives me.  And while I appreciate my job, and work hard, there are a couple of things that bother me about my situation.

My kids deserve the opportunity to go to a good neighborhood school that isn’t crumbling at its foundation just because it’s located in a working class area and not in a brand new housing development where the mortgages run half a million dollars or more.  If my kids could get a decent education at a neighborhood school, hell, who knows, maybe THEY could afford one of those houses some day.

But wait – that would mean that my kids wouldn’t be serving the wealthy.  I mean, they probably wouldn’t be going to work at fancy restaurants as waiters, or into call centers to do customer service, or into blue-collar jobs.  They’d probably end up going to college because of their outstanding SAT scores, where if they had the drive they’d be able to study for a career to advance their standing in society and do better then I did.  Yes, that would make sense.  Almost sounds reasonable. Has a bit of the “American Dream” ring to it, doesn’t it?   Of course if you pull a search of the test scores in my neighborhood you’ll find that there’s not a decent school in the entire district, save one.

And I got to thinking – if my kids (read: middle class) are not serving someone else in these blue collar jobs when they grow up, then how the hell are we to maintain the wealth gap that keeps the rich comfortably separated from the less-than-rich?  Wouldn’t it detract from their prestige if it could be established that their children are not by birth inherently smarter or better then mine?  If my kids could get a decent education, they would decide who employed them, not the other way around.  That would pose another problem for the wealthy.

The bottom line here is that the wealthy need to subjugate and control you.  They need to be certain that a new generation of your children will be under their children in every way imaginable, so that this endless cycle of poverty feeding wealth can continue unbroken.  This is a hard sell, so naturally they’ve had to delve into your values, get a sense of what makes you tick, so that you can be deceived into believing that when the conservatives are in office they are looking out for your best interests and your values.

Do you feel that’s true when John McCain talks about giving massive tax incentives to oil companies that are already squeezing the lifeblood from you for your daily commute while recording record profits?

Do you feel that’s the case when you’re told that there’s no “bailout” for homeowners who were roped  into mortgages that they could not afford, but that we’re going to help out those same companies who lost money deceiving people, lying to them, cheating them at the expense of their American Dream?

Has President Bush helped you to feel safer these past eight years, sending thousands of men and women to their deaths in Iraq, and then allowing his administration to trivialize that loss of life – to state without remorse that it pales in comparison to what we lost in Vietnam?  As if the value of those lives is somehow diminished because fewer of them were lost – it’s unfathomable.  Who do you think makes up the bulk of the military?  Let me give you a hint – not the rich people’s kids.

America – when you go to the polls this year ask yourself with honesty, selfishly – what has eight years of the Bush administration done for me?  Is my life better or worse then it was before, do my kids go to a good school, do I struggle to put food on the table and keep a positive balance in the bank account?  The government cannot solve all of your problems nor should it be expected to.  But they owe it to you that your quality of life is not diminished as a direct result of their actions.  In all honesty, isn’t that what’s happening to us now?