Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Politics As Usual

"With a Democratic response to George Bush's final State of the Union address that will be instantly forgotten, Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius delivered a bland "Join us, Mr. President" call for bipartisanship that did nothing to advance her much-ballyhooed prospects as a contender for her party's vice presidential nomination." ~ The Nation

Oh well, it's that time in the election cycle again. Forgive me if I just can't get up for it this year. I participated in 1984. I half follow all the stories, but it really does feel like the same old same old all over again all over again. Politicians move their lips, and they are immediately assailed by other politicians who take a posture. The pit bull types get attention. If they are thoughtful, reasoned and considerate, like Governor Sibelius in her response to last night's State of the Union address, they are slapped silly by pundits for not being vicious.

Don't we have enough viciousness already in this country? It's no wonder we don't have sensitive artist types in political careers. Running for office means getting smeared with dung and other rotting filth, not to mention blood, usually one's own. Ross Perot (with thicker skin than many) did not have the heart for it. Others have stood on the shore while their ships left the harbor because they, too, hadn't the desire to be fed piecemeal to the sharks.
I'll vote in the fall because I usually do, but this whole game in between is not going to give us the best candidates.

Besides, when push comes to shove, and the facts get laid out before the new president and he or she sees how things really were and how it really is, this new president may not behave any different than previous presidents. My guess is that we'll continue to meddle overseas in other nations' affairs that we do not understand, that government will continue to get increasingly bloated, that taxes will continue to suck up our personal incomes and we'll all pretty much accept it because we do not like to seriously consider the alternative: anarchy.

Like America's convenience stores, the political shelves will remain stocked with Coke and Pepsi products, I mean Dems and Republicans. A truly radical departure from this tradition is simply not in the cards.

Nevertheless, the media love it because the war chests are full for buying up air time which provides oodles of capital for the networks, which thus enables them to pay large paychecks to all their talking heads so they can bash the candidates, or damn them with faint praise.

Yes, 'tis the season. And it's politics as usual.

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