In advance of the punditry sure to bubble up and over in the next several months, I’ve gone ahead and drawn my line in the sand. What follows below are issues that will likely play a significant role in the 2012 election. I loathe them, and I thought you ought to know about it.
You’re “disappointed” with politics. You’re sick of selecting “the lesser of two evils.” You feel like government is “corrupt” with a gang of “career politicians.”
You know who’s to blame? You are. Because Citizens United is barely a toddler, and all the high-office offenses which guide your disaffection with politics, are remedied by you –your political consciousnesses, your political presence, and your political action. Action via apathy in this regard is inertia. Spinning your wheels. Chasing your tail – a way to get nowhere fast. In other words, let it be known for all time that closed mouths don’t get fed. You better speak up.
- Voter Disenfranchisement Tactics.
…particularly those voting-day-switch-a-roos. I’m convinced they prey upon the weakest among us. You don’t have to know why American elections are held on Tuesdays, but you should know that our elections are generally held on Tuesdays. We musn’t be so easily disenfranchisable. A
asshole patriot puts up a scrawled, misspelled note announcing Election Day has been postponed to Friday the 13th to dupe test the waters, and some sucker falls for it. Ignorance ain’t no ways bliss, policy-wise.
- “The American People”
In every election cycle, the pandering politician will defer to the sage, rational psyche of “The American People.” The American People know what they want…the American People are tired of…the American People are smart enough to…. No they don’t, and no they aren’t. The “American People” is a C student who struggles with separating fantasy from reality. We are consumers of mass marketing for whom happiness is little more than a credit card swipe away. And for whom consciousness is, you know, nerd shit. And through it all, we feel entitled to be outraged when irrationality and irreverence begin to pervade our politics. Indeed, deferring to us is a tremendous, albeit unavoidable, risk. We were once worthy of such a grand vote of confidence, weren’t we? *Admonishes you people with Chiggity check yourself before you wreck yourself on repeat*
I think it was Bill Maher who first drew my attention to these perpetual and farcical fence-riders. These cats aren’t carefully deliberating their political choices. Instead, it seems they feed off the attention of pandering partisans. The Independent beats his chest extolling the virtues of military might while watching carefully to ensure that his Medicare and Social Security checks make it to the mailbox on time. In 21st century politics, you can’t have it both ways. Ideologically, you’re either realist-progressive, or a nostalgic conservative, seeking desperately to turn back the clock on social and cultural progress while quietly concentrating opportunity in your hands, and yours only. Andrew Bacevich writes in The Limits of Power that “When it came to ensuring … every American should get a fair shake, the contribution of modern conservatism has been essentially nil.” One more time for the slow kids in the back: You cannot have it both ways. And the choice couldn’t be clearer.
Grab your balls and Pick a side.
Like it or not, election season is upon us. Choose wisely, ladies and gentlemen.
***For more, see: Cognitive Promiscuity