Wednesday, November 10, 2004


Post Mortem, Black Days

I can't say I'm shocked but I sure am's good to know that America has it's priorities straight: a quagmire in Iraq; a debauched, outsourced economy, these are mere annoyances in the face of the horror that is gay marriage, legalized abortion or stem cell research. OK, as a loyal, liberal Democrat I've learned my lesson. To paraphrase Bill Clinton (ah, Bill), "It's 9/11 and family values stupid!"

I can't even hurl my usual brickbats at the Democratic Party. Once they hit their stride in September 2004, they did almost everything right in their campaign. Kerry stayed on message. We didn't get drastically outspent. Kerry won the debates (but then again, a drunken monkey in a suit might have beaten Bush...if Bush wasn't already a drunken monkey in a suit. Am I digressing? Damn, I hate when I do that! How do I get out of my parenthetical digressions? It's like being a mole in a maze made out of glass. What the hell does THAT mean? Someone help...)

There's a huge culture divide in America, or so the Big Media would have you believe. In actuality, most Americans agree on a vast array of issues ranging from the sanctity of Social Security to the need for better (but not necessarily universal) health care. Karl Rove, the sickest and evilest political genius to show up since Henry Kissenger went into private practice, secured victory for the Red State Brigade by using wedge issues like the gay marriage initiative to inspire the most conservative voters to vote in large numbers. Even many Democrats, brainwashed as we all are by the notion that there is something sacred and religious about marriage, aren't comfortable with the notion of extending full benefits to gay partners and making it "legal" in the traditional heterosexual sense of the word. It was evil and narrowminded, but it was genius. It ensured that the Democrats and Kerry were the "them" that was eroding our precious tradition American values.

Yes, there were voting irregularities. There are always voting irregularities. There may even be enough irregularities here to merit a serious investigation and, yes, every vote should be counted because, gosh, this is a democracy dammit and we need to stop pretending that counting every vote is some kind of nuisance. The minute we stop counting is the minute we wake up in a Fascist, tinhorn dictatorship (we're on that path folks, but we're not there yet).

Where do progressives go from here? I was thinking about Iceland myself, but really, what is the future of the Left in a country that thinks John Freakin' Kerry is too liberal? (By the way, Bjork, why won't you answer my emails? Oh damn, another digression. And my g.f. is going to be pissed!)

All is not lost. We have to fight for all the progressive causes we always have and be even more vigorous. We can't let the Democrats in the Senate roll over like puppy dogs when the President tries to shove anti-choice judicial nominees down their throats--the GOP may have 55 seats, but they don't have enough to block a filibuster. It will be a long four years, we'll almost certainly pass the 5,000 mark in U.S. casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan and you can quintuple that if the neocons have their way and aim our troops and missiles at Teheran. But we can weather this and get behind Kerry or Edwards or Dean or Hillary or whoever in 2008 and still save our country from the kind of narrow, fundamentalist governing that has imperiled the Middle East and Africa for decades. Most importantly, whoever emerges for the Democrats over the next four years has to articulate, without condescension or hesitation, why we are all Americans, what our common interests are and how we go about them. It needs to be about the Red, White and Blue, not just the Red and Blue states. We deserve better and we are better. Even the rest of the world realizes that, although they must be shaking their heads after November 2nd.

Well, enough preaching. That's the state of our union, for real. Deal with it, but don't take it lying down. Stand up and shout. And pray like hell there's not another 9/11 between now and 2008.

On A Lighter Note, The Tortured Comedy of Dan Rather

Once again from CBS anchor Dan Rather, some of the oddest and funniest lines from Election Night. Peace y'all--back at ya' soon:

"It's the morning after the night before."

"This race is hotter than a Times Square Rolex (and it has been all night)."

"If a frog had sidepockets, he'd carry a handgun."

"Bush is rolling through the Midwest like a big combine."

"We don't know whether to to wind a watch or bark at the moon."