Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Doug Reviews Politics

I’m really looking forward to tonight’s debate.

I’m totally dreading tonight’s debate.

There is a debate tonight!

The election has been on my mind a great deal lately, and to be fair, at the end of this post I will tell you who I am probably voting for. But first let me tell you why.

To start, let’s all back off the idea that either of the two major candidates for president are trying to _(fill in the blank)____ the very fabric of __(fill in the blank)__.    Too many of us think either candidate for president will drag us down into the depths of slavery and bondage. They aren’t the problem, we are. So can we just stop sending each other the emails filled with hateful rhetoric about the hidden opinions and motives we like to project onto our favorite political villain?

My daily commute takes about 22 minutes. Every morning I listen to conservative talk radio and every evening I listen to liberal talk radio. No difference. Sure, there is some change in the tired old arguments each side trot out every day, but when I say no difference I mean there is not one speck of open-mindedness from either side of my radio dial.

Just this morning, I heard a conservative talk show host claim that anyone who votes for a liberal is a “mindless sheep that doesn’t think for themselves.” Then, ON THE VERY SAME DAY, I heard a liberal talk show host accuse every conservative of being a “moron incapable of processing logic.” People, this isn’t some made up bull crap to make my point, I heard these two comments today!

Do you really believe one of them is right? If so, I really feel like you’re not giving your conservative/liberal friends much credit. My closest and most respected friends disagree with me on many political subjects, for that I should assume they are mindless morons?

Why do we have to over politicize every topic? It’s like anything that could ever happen to you falls into the old “there’s an app for that” commercials.

iPhone or Droid? There’s a party for that.
Chicken or salad? There’s a party for that.
Star Wars or Star Trek? There’s a party for that.
Red Sox or Yankees? There’s a party for that.

But what about the growing number of us out there whose answer to the questions above is “neither”?

Look, those of you reading this are much smarter than me. And most of you have stronger opinions on the matter. You can quote to me precedents and stats and numbers and things other people have said, and I will totally agree with you and support you in your opinion. But I am supporting you having the right to have an opinion. I am not supporting any old opinion you throw out there. Opinions are a storyteller’s romantic version of facts. Luckily, we all love the story more than the facts and get to discuss our opinions.

Can you imagine my blogs if they contained no opinion? The blog would be even less bearable to read than it is now.  It would be me describing the rules of a game show and the outcome of said game show. Who wants to print that off at work and take it to the john to read?

I’m sorry, Republicans, but you’re being unreasonable and crazy. All democrats are not socialist anarchists looking to destroy America one unfortunate circumstance at a time. They don’t all want to elect Barack Obama as Muslim King of Earth and bask in his anti-American platforms.  

No, the liberals I speak with simply feel like there is a wide gap on this continent between the haves and the have nots; they believe the causes for this gap are socioeconomic circumstances that are perpetuated from birth. They feel we as a society, and the government as the head and representative of that society, is tasked to take the reins to ensure all citizens are given opportunity to pursue and obtain the same liberties and basic rights of food, shelter and care that the rest of us enjoy.

Don’t celebrate too soon, Democrats. Just settle down and stop being such a bunch of name calling pansies. Republicans do not hate and want to destroy the poor and less fortunate. They believe most of the same things you do. Their feeling, however, is that the US government has proven time and time again that it is not the most efficient administrator of the programs you feel all should partake in. But be careful accusing them of being heartless. Many of the “Christian Right” believe in donating to charitable causes even more of their money than what the government automatically takes for social welfare programs.

Tonight, do me a favor. Watch the debate and as soon as it is over, turn off the TV. Try to strip away all biases and make an effort to analyze what you heard. Don’t leave the TV on for the pundits and experts and “Fox News Contributors” to tell you what to think. Don’t let MSNBC fool you with their outrage that the Republicans had the audacity to send forth a candidate. Don’t buy in to the religious fervor of the day that is American politics. Just think.

I told you I’d let you know who I plan to vote for. The truth is, I’m not sure. I want to watch the debates and make my decision based on them. I won’t lie, I feel like a Republican Congress has blocked President Obama from getting much done, and will continue to do so. Romney would have more luck taking action and getting that action through congress. Something needs to happen, so for now, I am probably leaning toward the guy that at least has a chance of success. Sorry, I’m kind of pragmatic that way.

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