Monday, October 20, 2008

Campaign Fatigue

i’ve had a long-standing policy to never discuss politics here, but i’m thinking i should move away from that stance, if for no other reason than to share the terrific things i’m finding on the internets during this current election season, viewable here and here and here.

beyond cracking me up and making me watch SNL for the first time in years, this election is also making me sick. i know it’s important and the weight of the free world hangs in the balance and all that jazz, and of course i plan to vote in november, but the politicking from both sides is just nauseating.

the mudslinging, the partisanship, the misinformation — it’s too much. not to get all rodney kingish, but can’t we all just get along? can’t we all just stick to the issues for the few undecideds left in the country and move the election to tomorrow? then we can inaugurate the new president by thanksgiving, check out who he puts in his cabinet and carry on, hoping for the best.

call me a sourpuss, but i love watching campaigning as much as i love standing in line at an amusement park surrounded by screaming toddlers. i can’t endure any more TV commercials and the seemingly insane news stories that come out daily. since when does the tiniest thing warrant a “gate” a la “lipstick-on-a-pig-gate”?

i’m not pointing the finger solely at the republicans, because the democrats have been just as guilty of the nonsense. i know a lot of nice republicans, including my parents, who don’t believe that the world is only 5,000 years old. they, like most republicans, are decent, hard-working folks annoyed that their party’s ideology has been hijacked by fundamental christians who’ve reduced it to a culture war obsessed with god, gays and guns.

i also know a lot of nice democrats who are nothing like some of the democrats i met when i lived in san francisco — the kind of fascist liberals who think that anyone driving an SUV or carrying a plastic water bottle is an evildoer who should be reformed. to me, that’s the same type of fascism championed by fundamentalists who only allow for their interpretation of the mighty word of god. it’s two sides of the same ugly coin.

personally, my politics center on clichés like “live and let live” and “do unto others as you’d have done unto you.” i support people’s rights to live their lives as they please, be it conservative or liberal. the way i figure, if you’re not into abortion, then don’t have one. if you’re not into gay marriage, then don’t be in one. but don’t make that decision for others. similarly, i will support your right to believe in creationism, despite how stupid i think it is. i will also support your right to have as many guns as you want. because it’s not my place to tell you how to live or what to think any more than it’s your place to tell me.

perhaps i’m idealistic, but i think most people would prefer to be left the hell alone to believe and behave however they want, and would agree to leave others alone so they may do the same. it’s that 10% of extremists on both sides of the spectrum that ruin it for the rest of us. if we did away with them, the remaining 80% could figure out how to work together and would probably agree on wanting a cleaner planet, a more efficient government, safer streets, fewer taxes, better schools and affordable health care. the details on how to achieve this would be debated, and should be debated, but as long as we maintain focus on the problems instead of the parties, we should be ok.

but if we have to have political parties, can we at least add some more to the mix? let’s add one that represents the moderates, the middle-left and the middle-right. the fringe 10% can also form their own political parties, where they can commingle with like-minded loons who’ll never question their party’s platform.

the uber-right party could be called the Evangelicals, whose animal could be the snake — not because they are venomous but to represent the original sin, of course. they can sit around cooking up workshops for converting the gays while talking about how silly fossils are, bibles in hand, ready to thump the dissenters.

the ultra-left party could be called the Communists. if they had a sense of humor, they could make their party animal a pig, which they can ceremoniously slaughter at their conventions. their meetings would probably include a lot of people wearing birkenstocks or maybe uniforms and combat boots. they can sit around lambasting religion while extolling the virtues of communism, pointing to the many great examples of its success throughout history. they can point to my motherland, the former Soviet Union.

but hey, that’s just me. and i make no claim to know anything about politics, which is why i never write about it here. there are other websites that do it better, websites i tend to avoid so i don’t have to read a chorus of loony commentators repeating what amounts to “my sports team is better than your sports team, so suck it.”

thankfully, the two teams will have their superbowl in just a few more weeks, putting the campaigning to an end. then i won’t have to turn on the TV and hear an angry feminist who refuses to vote for obama because clinton couldn’t get enough delegates on her side to become the democratic nominee, and i won’t have to witness an old lady clutching her bible while talking about the gay agenda and how obama is a scary muslim.

at least not for another four years.

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