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Politics—bullshit baffles brains

Politics—bullshit baffles brains

I’m going to start off by giving an honest disclaimer. I do not have the answers, I do not understand the economy in many respects and I am giving my opinion as it stands now but I am always willing to be educated and informed differently. This statement alone is unfortunately rare. Opinions are like assholes, everyone has one. It’s an amusing but true jibe at the multitude of essentially arrogant assumptions of knowledge. We see it all the time. People think they know the world better then scientists. Evolution? BAH! We couldn’t have come from monkeys…that’s just silly! Vaccines? No way…do you know how many people get sick from the flu right after them? I don’t trust them…raise taxes on the rich? Oh that’s not fair…they’ll stop trickling down money to us and go elsewhere!

Funny, but the last statement is just as applicable in comparison as the first two but it’s amazing how people in the United States in particular allow politics to be sold to them by a used car salesman. Conservatives have some ideas I agree with and it’s very rare that any multi-faceted platform of a political party could have EVERYTHING wrong. There are genuine debates to be had and maybe the GOP has some things correct, but we aren’t going to get much done if partisan politics keep dividing people. The “Grand Obstructionist Party” has been so uncooperative and quite frankly, childish, that it’s amazing the democrats got anything accomplished at all!

People have a messiah complex in the States and this causes a lot of people to have impossible expectations regarding their elected officials.

Lets delve into the major issue of the campaign for a little bit. The economy has been at the forefront of the election and the views sharply differ between the parties. I understand that Obama favours Keynesian economics and it’s beyond me in many ways…some principles sound good, some I’m unsure, but it’s a valid position and it seems to have been successful at certain times in history during certain conditions. Good enough. It’s worth extending the benefit of the doubt that the President actually knows what he is doing when he is accepted to be an intelligent, caring and principled man with experience in many ways and has won the office. All do not agree with that assessment, but I wager the great majority do even in the Republican camp. They may think he is wrong about how to do things, but I highly doubt they think him evil or stupid.

So the truth remains that he was hamstrung a great deal during the first term and the American economy has been slow to improve, but it HAS been improving and thankfully some of the effects of his leadership were becoming apparent just in time for the election. He was dealt the biggest pile of shit since Roosevelt! How does anyone expect him to be a miracle worker? Ah, but that’s precisely it. People have a messiah complex in the States and this causes a lot of people to have impossible expectations regarding their elected officials.

Back to the Republicans…where was their plan? Romney gave some definite policy moves. He was going to make the rich richer: same Republican bullshit that tries to sell the idea that a richer rich person somehow ‘trickles down’ wealth and employment to people below them. Nice theory, but it has never worked out in practice. Hello? Outsourcing? Off shore bank accounts? Tax exemptions and capital gains that enrich without any serious tax going into the government and economy that’s using people and resources to MAKE them richer. Romney was actually proposing legislation to lower taxes on practically everybody and refused to explain where all of the extra money was going to come from to not only make up for the tax loss, but actually make more money for the government. Where and how is the money going to come from to actually pay down the debt? It’s absolutely baffling to me that he got this far, with this much support and he couldn’t or wouldn’t even explain what the hell his vision was! I think the only ‘vision’ he had was to see himself in the Oval Office.

All in all one could go through many issues and gaffes but it comes down to what I think is fairly easy to smell…the odour of bullshit!  

Getting sidetracked by idiotic issues like abortion and gay marriage is classic obfuscation techniques for conservative parties. They try to fire up their base with bigoted positions of absolutes that generally say “no” instead of “choice”.  At least this campaign was mercifully short of that in the main because people really DID care about the economy far more. Foreign policy made me shudder when I honestly saw it as a real possibility that Romney could be Commander in Chief. Not so certain Iran would be around on the earth much longer if he went after them half-cocked. Russia at the very least would be angry and considering he referred to them as America’s “number one Geopolitical foe”, I doubt they would be very charitable in their relations with the White House.

All in all one could go through many issues and gaffes but it comes down to what I think is fairly easy to smell…the odour of bullshit! Romney was flip flopping on many issues that he himself stood for differently in the past and tap dancing around the minefield to appear centrist was becoming a daily dance in the press. But you know what? It baffles brains. People love a good horse race; they love to feel that someone ‘scored’ on another person. It’s all a big game to many Americans at times as serious as the stakes are and as much as they genuinely care about where their country is going, they still get caught up in hype—and bullshit.

Let’s hope they start using these newer ‘fact-checkers’ going on these days. Let’s also hope they start educating themselves a lot more about the economy and how it truly works so they have some informed decision to weigh in on. Critical thinking has never been as important as now because the power of communication is unparalleled in history. Facebook and blogs can unite people by the hundreds of thousands in the space of a day. Real and serious policy changes have come into effect based on such things started by the internet. “It gets better”, the no-bullying movement, even foreign countries where people are slated to be harshly treated by imprisonment or execution have been successful at times in swaying those in power. People really DO have power and it’s important that it comes with responsibility. Education is key. Thankfully it’s one of Obama’s major campaign issues. I will rest easy for the next 4 years in the main I think.

photo credit: nitot

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Kendall is a local singer/keyboardist who moonlights as an occasional writer. His past work has included writing for Naked News, Xtra! magazine and now he’s trying his hand at this blog.


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