Tag Archives : DNC


Why You Lost 2

 

Let’s get one thing clear right off the bat, Republicans: You didn’t lose because people didn’t ‘wake up’ in time, or because Black Panthers carjacked all the little white nanas on the way to the polling place. The UN didn’t shut down stations in republican states, and HAARP didn’t make that gust of wind push a tree limb on just your car. ACORN didn’t replace your vote with a big piece of paper that just said “Obama” on it, and George Soros didn’t do a Jedi mind trick and make all red blooded Ammuuuuricans tick the D box when they meant the R. Don’t be one of those people who complain about bad referees when it’s obvious their team choked. You lost because, quite simply, your candidate was horrible.
This isn’t the end of the world (except for Ted Nugent and his ilk); you can actually get through this. All you need to do is keep some tips in mind for next time.

1. Turn off Fox News. I know it pains you to think of it, but all of media is not in a massive conspiracy, with your beacon of light, Fox News, cutting through the lies. Look at Murdoch’s other media empires – he’s an opportunist. He saw a need for fear-based ‘reporting’ in the US, and he went with it. The over-coiffed people on the couch feeding you a steady diet of misinformation and paranoia? Not helping you. Coulter and O’Reilly are only on Fox because they need to shill their newest book; they have to be there – you don’t. Unplug the tv, get some fresh air.

2. Stop letting the lunatics run the asylum. Remember when ‘conservative’ meant ‘fiscally prudent and laissez-faire regarding social issues’? Yeah, no one else born after 1980 does either. From Ron Regan’s courting of the Religious right, to John McCain’s choice to open the floodgates of insanity in the form of Sarah Palin, intellectuals and moderates no longer run your party – extremists do. And the American public as a whole fear those extremists, and sent a message that they won’t put up with racist homophobe ignoramuses any longer. You need to do the same from within. Which brings us to our next point…

3. Quit the ignorance. From Santorum calling the President a ‘snob’ because he wanted all young adults to get an education, to Tea-party led school boards and districts white-washing textbooks to fit what they wished happened, versus what did, your party is likely to sink under the weight of its own stupidity. Stop being afraid of math, science, and numbers. Find your local librarian and ask her how to research primary resources. Don’t just rattle off what Breitbart or WorldNetDaily or Newsbusters or the Heritage Foundation says – look up the full text behind the sound bite. You’ll find yourself shocked by the results.

4. Tell your leaders that the buck stops here. Are you sick of political ads? Well, good luck, because they’ll be back in 1.5 years for the mid-term elections. Want to stop the rhetoric? Tell your senator, rep, council person, everyone, that you won’t vote for them again till they pass comprehensive campaign reform (this goes for all parties, by the way). Corporations are not people. Super PACs are not good. Politicians aren’t supposed to be run by lobbyists. Get the money out. And those who refuse? Get them out in the next election cycle.

And finally, because this will come up again in our nation…

5. Choose a candidate because you like them, not because you hate the other guy. Who happens to be black. Who, the minute he took the oath, magically became the focus of birthers and prominent ferret headwear collector Donald Trump, a massive movement of the Tea Party who just ‘happened’ to spring up to fight him (even though the things they yell about were things Bush did for eight years without a peep), and a Republican led effort to ensure he’d get nothing done (to quote Mitch McConnell : “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”). I’m not going to paint all of you with a racist brush, but I will say this – they did all of this, and still lost, because Americans got sick and tired of your divisiveness. And this goes for the next candidate, who may be disabled. Or gay. Or a woman.

Republicans, you better evolve. Now. Or spend a lot of Tuesday nights, sullenly staring at the tv, making excuses for your party.


US politics, in one tweet. 1

As many of you know, Hurricane Sandy ripped through the northeast of the US this past week. One of the hardest hit areas after NYC was the state of New Jersey, who saw widespread structural damage. New Jersey’s governor is Chris Christie, a Republican, who has in the hours and days after the strike worked with and praised the Democrat President Obama for swiftly mobilizing and cooperating to halt the secondary destruction (sickness, starvation, etc). Christie, a very vocal Romney supporter, even took to twitter, announcing:

When it comes to getting things done, I don’t care what party someone is in. The responsibility I have is much bigger than politics.

Lovely, right? Bipartisanship gets the job done.

Not quite. Look at the responses to the tweet itself.

They are angry that Christie put the lives of his constituents over his political affiliation.

In their world, it’s better to have a high body count, but still with your cronies, than actually co-operate with someone who’s ideas are different than yours.

And it’s not just a couple of idiots on twitter. Oh, I wish it were! The spiritual leader of the right, Rush Limbaugh called the governor “fat and a fool,” saying Christie “doesn’t know what he’s talking about.” (We’ll avoid the obvious pot/kettle reference on the Jabba sized Rush). The Daily Caller assumes that Christie and Romney are no longer buds, and that “So what’s up? Is Christie angry he was passed over for vice president? Has he resigned himself to Romney’s defeat? Or is something else afoot?” (Ominous, something may be afoot! Nothing like a possible conspiracy for the tinfoil crowd to gnaw on). The right is absolutely apoplectic that a Governor would, you know, govern his state through crisis, over play politics and watch people die.

And this is why the US will see civil war in the next 20 years. When you let the inmates run the asylum, when you feed yourself a steady diet of myopic, hubris-stuffed jingoism and pooh-pooh science, fact, reasoning, or even basic humanity, and when you firmly believe that human lives aren’t as important as a photo op for your candidate, something will give.

This election will be an interesting one, no doubt about it. I’m just glad I’m safely here, frankly. I have nightmares where I have to fly my nieces over here to get them away from the ridiculousness, and I wake, so sad and angry. “In the age of information, ignorance is a choice”, I always say. These twitterers, devotees of the larger idiots who spew this garbage from their radio stations and morning news couches, are single-handedly dumbing down our nation to the point that it will collapse in on itself. And honest to God, I just wish they’d get it over and done with already, so I wouldn’t have to watch them teeter on the edge for so long.

For what it’s worth, while I don’t like Christie’s politics, he’s been class act throughout this entire ordeal, and for that I thank him. He put people over politics, and that is never a bad thing. I still wouldn’t vote for him, but I respect him for this.

You’re doing a heckuva job, Christie. Keep up the good work.


I don’t want to be Southern Canadian again. 1

There is a great blurb over on Slate of two Overseas delegates at the Democratic National Convention talking about what it was like pre January 2009, and how things have changed internationally in the last 4 years for them.  Now before I go any further, a few things to clear up.

- The census doesn’t count us, but by estimation there are anywhere from 6 to 7 million expats worldwide (not counting service men and women).

- We are not all millionaires who ran to Cancun or Switzerland to escape taxes.  The uber rich just leave their money overseas, not their lives (see Romney).  I was an arts educator for seven years before I met my future husband, not an oil tycoon.

- We still pay taxes!  Yes, America is the only developed nation in the world that forces expats who no longer live there to pay into a system that they get nothing out of.  You’re welcome.  The super rich find a way to weasel out (again, see Romney), the rest of us pay up.  Yes, that does mean that we are forced to pay taxes twice on the same bit of money earned, thanks for noticing.

- My son, who is an American citizen by my bloodline, must pay taxes into a system he has never and will never use, as well as register for Selective Service when he turns 18 by law, but can finally (in 17 years) vote as of this year (Ohio passed the resolution late 2011).  HOWEVER:   27 states still will refuse the right of foreign born American citizens to vote because they cannot provide residency.  Literally, taxation without representation.

- Most of us move out of country for family, then job or studies.  The rogue criminal who runs overseas is generally the uber rich one who can afford to be well hidden – 99.999% of us don’t have that luxury (or need to run!).

 

Now that that is out of the way…

I met my husband in 2008, and by the time I moved here, the ROW (rest of world) was turning around in their views of the US.  We were no longer the murderous school yard bullies, we now had a more intellectual, pragmatic side.  The Queen fell for Mrs. Obama, and the United Kingdom started to forget the sting of the Bush-Blair alliance.  Sure, the ROW still had major issues with America, but it wasn’t such an outright outrage.  Things were pretty good…

 

…then Romney arrived for the Olympics.  Oy.  And whether it was him slagging off not only the preparation but the enthusiasm of the UK for the  events, or linguistic faffs (back garden /= backside), or the great “Anglo-Saxon” heritage bullshit, when your trip is so bad that a man who would later in the week get stuck on a zip line can punk you in front of 50 thousand people, it was obvious this was going to be a problem.  For some of us, it was a new feeling, seeing our nation be lampooned in the media for the leadership rather than policies, and for others, it was a sad reminder of how they had lived under Bush II.  Either way, we didn’t like it.

Because here’s the thing, folks:  the ROW doesn’t care if Obama maybe-sorta-but-didn’t bow to a Saudi prince.  They care when a Senate candidate thinks women can stop rape-induced pregnancies with special secretions.  They care when the VP candidate considers rape to be just ‘another form of conception’.  They care that the US is supposedly a world leader, but cannot manage to provide comprehensive healthcare to its own citizens.  That’s what my friends* ask me about when we talk about politics.

*It’s worth mentioning that I have an equal mix of conservative and liberal friends here in the UK, due in no small part to the fact that most Cons really don’t flip out about the same things that US cons do – they don’t think a lack of prayer in school is what’s ruining the country, they don’t mind Muslims who live next door, even though the 7/7 attacks were the result of Islamic extremists, and they are far too busy finding a good au pair to care if two gay people get married.  As my friend, who’s husband’s family member sits as a conservative in the House of Lords, puts it, “Your Democrats would be our Daily Mail readers” (Daily Mail is a conservative paper here).  The Right in the US would be the Far Far Far Right in the UK.

I don’t want to go back to being ashamed to say I am American.  I don’t want to call myself a Southern Canadian.  I want people to at least sort of respect the US, versus seeing them as a major part of the problem from 2000-2008 (and prior as well!). I don’t want the good will that the Obama years have created to be swept aside by Romney and Co. ( And for people like Tea Party Express chairman Amy Kremer, stop.  Just.  Stop.  Your myopic, logic-challenged jingoism is helping no one.  America’s unfounded insistence that it was #1 in the world is part of what has gotten us into this mess, we sure as hell don’t need further blind flag waving to get us out.)

Yesterday at the testing center, fellow testees (*snerk*) asked me why I wasn’t going for British citizenship.  Honest to God, I look at how much it has taken to undo Bush and Co bullshit, and how far we have to come, and  wonder why I didn’t tick that box instead of the ILR.  I guess because I figure we’re the comeback kid.  We’re scrappers.  We just have to keep fighting for what’s right over what’s easy, for logic and reason over mis-infomation and blind fear, and we may have a chance yet.  At least, I hope so.