When all is said and done
After two years of agonizing over it, I've made my decision.
This morning, I'm voting for Barack Obama. For two reasons:
- To say "fuck you" to the Republican Party. The satisfaction — once devoutly to be wished for — is now incredibly muted, because Obama himself says nothing of the kind. He calls them the "party of ideas," and he even praises their handling of the environment. Jesus Fucking Christ! He stokes the myths of the "transformative" Ronald Reagan, and as a neo-liberal he will challenge few of Ronnie's ideas. And, most significantly, he gives these rat bastards air cover by perpetuating the Beltway myth that our problems stem largely from too much partisanship on the left instead of the obvious truth, which is the precise opposite. This pisses me off and fucks up our world more than you can imagine (well, some of you can imagine it, and that's why I love y'all). And with every important decision Obama has made this year, he has proven correct those who see no difference between the Democrat Party and the Republicans. Nonetheless, Bush's party needs to be put down, and there is only one candidate who offers the nominal satisfaction of doing this.
- He's half-black. We could have had a far better candidate, a different and similarly important "first," but the powers that be in the Democratic Party — and the candidate they coronated — rode her dirty. I will never forget, and may never forgive that. A symbol is a damn sight less than I was hoping to vote for in these troubled times, but my other available options are symbolic, as well. I would have felt much better about the symbolic value of his presidency if he hadn't leveraged misogyny and false charges of racism to get to this point. As Billy Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond put it, "Nobody's perfect." Our process sucks, our media sucks, and our party sucks. And that's the way it is. Be all that as it may, I still like the idea of a first black president. As all liberals do. Even the ones who were slandered as racists.
Obama has run on a platform of hope, and given the way he's trashed his party's sense of fair play, reneged on his promises (including the one to uphold the Constitution), and held back the Overton Window from moving left, hope is all we're going to get as the numbers tally up in his favor today.
We can hope he can and will use his smarts to do something good, rising to the crisis-filled occasion. I may be holding my nose, but I'm not holding my breath.
I know some will be disappointed with my decision. If it wasn't for disappointment, I wouldn't have any appointments during this campaign season.
However you feel about it, I hope you'll join me in looking for ways to assert a progressive agenda with a new President who, with or without my vote, doesn't seem to like progressives very much. Same as the old boss.
Let's break out the booze and have a ball. If that's all there is.