Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Midterm Madness and Mayhem - Part 1

We're just one week away from the elections so it seemed as good a time as any to toss out a thought or two. I'm no political junky but I do try to pay attention to current events. So I've got a few thoughts about this whole midterm muddle.

  1. Every survey tells us that we, as a people, are unhappy about the direction the country is headed. We are angry about Iraq. We got tricked into this war and now there is clearly no plan to get us out. We are unhappy about the economy and the prices we paid for gas this summer. And we are angry that Dick Cheney can shoot a guy in the face with no real consequence while we can't even carry shampoo on an airplane cause that seems dangerous. And yet, I wonder how much will change? We get pissed. We rant and rave. But will we really vote for change? Or will most incumbents slip by with a narrow margin so we can continue on our merry way with no real change?
  2. What if we do elect a whole new slew of politicians? Will it matter? Do any of them give a rat's ass about change - or do they just care about getting elected? The way they alter their positions almost daily as the polls move up and down gives us a hint about what they care about, doesn't it!
  3. I don't know about the politicians where you live. Perhaps they are fine, upstanding characters with integrity and decency and high ideals. But if that's the case, then you don't live here! Some of the commercials on TV here have broken new ground in tastelessness. If the commercials were true, we would be choosing between terrorist supporters, porn producers, idiots, losers and crooks. Okay, some of that may be true. But I'm betting most of it is not. While the commercials have that same bizarre appeal as a car crash - we are repulsed but we can't look away - it seems the quality of them must surely be bad for the political process as a whole.

I will stand in line next Tuesday and cast my vote. I enjoy participating in the process. I like expressing my opinion with my vote. But my track record isn't so good. I usually vote for the one who loses. My values and beliefs are not mainstream. But that won't stop me. I'll be there. I'll pull a lever or scan a document or punch a chad or whatever the hell kind of voting mechanism we get to use this time. And I'll sit at home Tuesday night, watching the returns, and keeping my fingers crossed for just enough victories locally and nationally to maybe make a difference. And I hope I'm not writing next Wednesday about how futile the whole thing is and what a dumb bunch of voters we all are.


Cyndy said...

As a veteran of the Marine Corps, and someone who got to vote at age 18 for the first time in America's history (same year I turned 18)..I always vote. But you know I wonder...does it really make that much of a difference? Sometimes I think that the politicians are just voices for lobbyists and those that really think they can make a difference find out how hard it really is

Jill said...

I always vote, but sometimes it just seems pointless. I live in state where the views of the majority are usually different from mine. And that's assuming there's any real difference between the two parties. Like Cyndy said, it mostly about the money anyway.

Em said...

Cyndy and Jill - at least we all vote. But I'm just not sure how our vote stacks up to money and lobbyists. But I'll be out there next Tuesday doing my best to make my voice heard.