Tuesday, September 09, 2008

By request, my thoughts thus far…

A certain Maria in Toronto (much love to my Canadian readers!!) wrote to ask this bitch for my thoughts on the 2008 election coverage/happenings thus far.

Girl, you asked for it (wink).

Shall we?

I don’t know about y’all, but this bitch has had enough political bullshit tossed my way in the last few months to keep me shoveling for a lifetime.

I’m tired of listening to people debate elections and candidates as if this shit were fantasy football.

And I’m tired of discussions about the bedazzling factor of this chess move versus the fantastical cleverness of some other move designed to turn on the press yet full to bursting with nothingness.

So, I’d say my emotional state is damn near Howard Beale-ish.

I live in a city where white flight has left deep trenches that allow too many people to navigate their way through life without ever seeing what the fuck is going on around them. Just by selecting a certain route to work people can go about their business and never see the city…never see what needs to be done and who needs to be given a voice.

Then, come an election, they get some direct mail pieces talking about all manner of progress that hasn’t really happened and threats that don’t really exist and they take their blissfully uninformed ass to the polls and vote for four more years of the same miserable waste of time, space and money.

And my city suffers for that.

Well, I see the same damn thing going on with this election from the bottom of the ballot on up.

I’ve got to be honest…I don’t give a flying shit if Gov. Palin's middle name is AgentforChangeMaverickChangeAgent or if she discovered the cure for the common cold.

News flash - Palin isn’t running for president.

Neither is Joey B., for that matter.

So, unless someone wants to get into an awkward as hell life insurance-esque discussion of why the fuck y’all are really debating her qualifications…

***cue crickets***

…yeah, uh huh...then move the hell on.

The economy is fucked…very fucked…not fixable any time soon and requiring a lot of serious attention…fubar!

Our children are being sorta-educated by a system that is guaranteed to look good on paper and leave them unprepared to compete in a global marketplace.

Immigration reform is still unaddressed and, just like healthcare reform, that shit ain’t gonna get any easier the longer we let it sit.

We are at war without a definition of success or completion…we’ve got a reduction of violence out of a troop surge but no measurable political reconciliation…and the rest of the world is moving into military and political postures that look a lot like the lead up to WWI.

People in my hood are starting to discuss winter fuel prices like Soviets used to lament the price of bread.

The roads are fucked up…our ability to handle natural disasters is so up in the air that news anchors visibly sigh with relief when a flood doesn’t result in a massive loss of life.

The air is polluted…rent is too high and foreclosure too real…the water tastes funny…our food is suspect…and we’re on the way to another holiday season full of “oh shit, don’t let Tommy chew on that!!” recalls from hell.

All of that shit and so much more remain pilled high and stinking with a vengeance.

That’s what happens when we the people discuss whether a candidate would be nice to grab a beer with instead of the issues and the policies being proposed to address those issues.

What we are dealing with right now is the outcome of two back-to-back elections built on the wrong foundation and a media supported policy of ignore and redirect.

And we all suffer for that shit.

Lawd, have mercy.

So when I read reports that people are responding to this insulting as hell intellectually lazy off topic when we can least afford to be off topic pseudo-coverage, I can only conclude that my fellow Americans have either learned to enjoy and eagerly anticipate pain, misery and want.

Or mayhap people have lost their motherfucking minds.

Or could be that there are a lot of us out there about to give voice to our inner Howard Beale...


J said...

I had just this conversation with a friend of mine yesterday, who likes Palin because she is 'real'. I said, take her to lunch if you like her, but look at her positions and decide who you're going to VOTE FOR. Ahem.

Anonymous said...

Nice game-changing speech, Little Sister! You really moved the needle with that one! Expect a whale of a bounce in tomorrow's polls -

(douses head into bucket of ice water)

Sputter... Sorry. That crap is contagious. I'm going to take two beers and call y'all in the morning.

(Logs off, humming "Oh, Canada")

Anonymous said...

Well said, as usual!

BTW, I've been reading ABB for a long time, and I must confess I don't understand the cue crickets reference. What does cue crickets mean exactly?

Okay, I live in Alaska, and we don't have crickets. Nor do we have a governor. She was last seen rampaging around the Lower 48 making a mess of the place. If you find her, you can return her to us by voting for Obama.

The Lazy Iguana said...

Well I am not black, nor do I qualify to be a bitch.

But I AM getting somewhat angry. More so than usual during an election cycle.

And here is one example of why.


Really funny there! A muslim joke! HA!

And then there is this.


HA! A watermelon joke. Classic. Why I never heard one of those before.

And then there are all the references to "Osambo". Spread mostly by TERRORISTS who claim white "race traitors" who plan to vote for Osama should be killed.

And what is law enforcement doing about these terrorists? Nothing. With all the provisions in the Patriot Act to allow for domestic spying - what domestic terrorist groups have been busted up??

Actually now that I think about it. I do not know if angry is the right word. Depressed is more like it. This is what the election has come down to? Osambo and photoshop jobs that put watermelon slices on Air Force One?

Fuck it all.

Jo Moore said...

you are on point as usual, girlfriend...But I believe we have to speak out on the bullshit as well as the issues...and I will shout into the wind until I lose my voice...and then I will sign until my hands cramp...peripheral bullshit must be corrected...if just one person hears me...then I've done my job!

peace to you and yours

Anonymous said...

Thank you. Now if we could have a free press that actually calls bullshit where it lives instead of having the agenda of discourse set by Corporations made of frat boys, maybe our public discussion could be something resembling sane.

Jeannie said...

I have decided that the general public enjoys being shat upon by their elected leaders.

Furthermore, the notion of change is truly frightening to some people. They say that they want it, but their actions show that their true feelings are quite the opposite. That's why folks are buying into the smoke that McCain is blowing up their assess. They can then say that they voted for an agent of change (HA!), while knowing that things won't shift too much, if at all.

It all just frustrates me.

The Lazy Iguana said...

it is a few hours later. Plenty of time to cool off.

Yet I am still pissed off. Rim does not even seem to be helping.

Unknown said...

Hello Shark Fu,

Of course your correct that Palin isn't running for Pres...but McCain IS making her the centerpiece of his campaign.

Laying out why she is as useless as teats on a bullfrog is not only required on occasion, it would be in my pov, folly to ignore her and the bs she spouts daily.

But..I could be wrong..it happens all the time. ;p

E. Bunny said...

I am with you Shark-Fu,

This is a farce. The most important job duty for POTUS is picking a cabinet. The fact that Palin was announced as the VP pick going on two weeks ago and she has yet to give a press conference or answer questions from actual real-people (c), is a pretty clear admission that she was ready to be a VP candidate from the oft spoke of DAY 1. She isn't even prepared to go on Faux News? The only question that should be on America' lips is "Is this how McCain is going to choose his cabinet?"

Good Morning American shouldn't be interviewing her friends. We haven't seen a real interview with the candidate yet. Why?

McCain did not vet Palin, and he is comfortable running around the country listening to her repeat a lie.

AND, when Palin sits down with Charles Gibson (give me a break!), what are the chances that anyone is going to get the chance to ask that woman any real question?

The Anchorage paper made up a list, so that the folks in the lower 48s would know what we need to ask?http://www.adn.com/opinion/view/story/520272.html

People continue to talk about someone that hasn't really talked to them.

Meanwhile, we barely avoided what some are calling financial armegeddon when Freddie and Fannie were taken over yesterday. Banks around the world would have had to stopped lending had those two giants fallen.

E. Bunny said...

Oops! That should've read NOT ready to be a candidate on DAY 1.

Anonymous said...

Might be a generational thing, as "cue crickets" doesn't necessarily tie into real honest-to-goodness crickets. Allow me to step in and assume to know the genesis of Little Sister's homage...

If you have ever watched Looney Tunes Cartoons, you may have seen as one of the running gags throughout the episodes a character playing his/her heart out on stage, offering a big "Ta-DAH!" finale and stand there (holding the Ta-DAH! pose), awaiting applause. If the bit fell flat, the only auditory result would be the chirping of crickets.

This in turn is an homage to Vaudeville; traveling acts criss-crossed the country, playing small towns on hastily-erected stages (hence the "but will it play in Peoria?" rhetorical question), sometimes in the midst of cornfields or crossroads. Hearing crickets was a bad, bad sign for any entertainer, as that meant there wasn't any other sound. No applause, no cheers, not even lusty "boo"s that could be worked with.

So when ABB cues the crickets, it means she feels she has asked a question for which there is no answer... the Powers That Be have no sound to make. Silence is the only response.

"The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls, and tenement halls. And echoed in the sounds of silence."

Shark-Fu said...


You got it in one! Cyber cookie for you, my sister!

Anonymous said...

This is a great post. Thanks for getting me back on track.

I grew up in the St. Louis suburbs (Dellwood) and concur with your comments about people avoiding the truth about what is going on there. People in the suburbs act as if the city is not there. My father only takes “safe” routes that avoids certain areas of St. Louis. If only they knew I used to hang out in a club in East St. Louis.

Anonymous said...

This Canadian reader loves you muchly.

I love your take on the election.

Blue said...

Silly Angry Black Bitch, issues are for losers [otherwise known as Democrats] -literally (unfortunately).

mzza said...

my additional frustration to the constant current politics-talking everywhere we go is that national elections are like the olympics, where every four years the ins-and-outs of obscure track-and-field events are endlessly (and redundantly) discussed by US citizens the country over, only to be discarded until it comes media-front-and-center four more years hence. and few people talking trendy-topics critical-think who's choosing which events get air time and headlines during a much bigger event.

I think our challenge is to find ways to keep issues of democracy and political accountability front and forward in the minds of the people even in off years, even when the don't have candidates pulling 360s on the high bars to dazzle the crowds. Democracy happens in the mind and on the street.

Frogspond said...

I would love to see a campaign based on voting record. I spent hours last night looking at McCain's voting record. I did not intend to spend that much time. It just shocked the shit out of me what the record really was.

He is worse than we think.

I ended up posting the high points on my blog.

If we had a campaign where the candidates were not allowed to make speaches but were forced to show their voting record, this one would have been decided long ago.

Anonymous said...

It was interesting to read about your neighborhood in St. Louis. The problems of places like St. Louis, aren't they often microcosms of much of the rest of America? Where I live, in Omaha, while the money along with box dwelling barbies and kens withdraw and expand west into their compounds, those of us in the North side of town (where you can actually walk to shit instead of driving to strip malls) are left to our own devices.

Unknown said...

I guess the scary thing about the pick of Palin as a VP is the fact that McCain is getting on in years, and he has a history of skin cancer (on his head no less), which could take him down fast. From what I have learned of her so far that woman has less business being POTUS than the creep we have in there now. The past two elections have depressed me, if the repubs find a way to take this one, my head will be out the window, I will be mad as hell :(

Anonymous said...

When do they start talking issues in this campaign? I am sure the longer they don't, the more it favors McCain/Palin. If they can keep on message- the politics of hate and division, they are the winners.

wynsters the tigress said...

you put it all so eloquently. can't wait for nov 4th. if this country votes red again, don't know what i'll do. move abroad...?

Anonymous said...

I find Palin worrisome because McCain is old, has a history of cancer, would have a stressful job in front of him, and there is a significant chance (say, 10%) that he might become incapacitated for a serious amount of time (stroke) or die in the next four years. All that I have heard about her management style in Alaska suggests that she would not be amenable to guidance from more experienced or technically versed staff (Cabinet members, Armed Services, etc). Ignorant, unable to accept even mild dissent, stubborn - does this sound familiar to you? Add on the fantasies of hastening the Second Coming by supporting Israeli takeover of Biblical territory (Dome of the Rock/ Temple on the Mount, for starters), and of eliminating Israel's enemies, that are so prevalent among the Assemblies of God and independent churches with similar Darbyite theology.....ka-boom!

I confess that I am one of the not-seeing ones. Rarely do I need to go anywhere in North City or North County (St. Louis). I live and work in the central corridor (CWE - midtown), and most often go west (or east) on 40, Forest Park, Delmar Rd., or Clayton Rd. to reach 170 or 270. In. A. Rut. When I do have reason to go to a N. City location or to do the north on Grand or Khway to 70 trek, or travel on 70 between 170 and downtown, yes, I see the problems that I normally just hear about. (ghost factories, for one).


claire newcastle said...

There is an ad right now about Obama on education. They have creepy pictures (cutouts, so no context) of him while children's music plays in the background. Then the narrator asserts that Obama's only achievement in education is passing legislation to teach sex education to Kindergarteners.

F--k me. Seriously?

A Republican from Georgia calls both Obamas "uppity," then claims he didn't know what he was saying.
"I’ve never heard that term used in a racially derogatory sense," he said in a statement.

Then the McCain campaign as good as says Barack Obama wants to touch your children.

Am I pissed?

F--k yes I am.

Kit (Keep It Trill) said...

Excellent and thought-provoking piece. I'm concerned that if McCain-Palin wins, Russia and China will turn them into lamb chops and pork chops with lipstick within months.

Kerry said...

Thank you for this. Very much!

I have had it up to the tits (not that that's saying a lot in my case) with people who say "Well, I'm not voting for So-and-So until he or she EARNS my vote! They haven't really been trying to get my vote!"

The fuck? Do you expect the candidates to come to your house and give you a neck massage and woo you in person? Are you waiting for the Secret Word That Will Make the Electoral Duck come down? Why so passive about something this important?

If you don't want to vote, don't vote. That's certainly your right (though not participating in the system doesn't ennoble or make one "above it all"). But god knows there is enough information out there right now on the candidates (including third-party tickets if someone is so inclined) that anyone should be able to dig around a bit and come up with the person who comes the closest to their personal stances. Take some agency, folks. That's your part of the job.

And I'm sorry that the perfect dream candidate may not be running for you this year. But they're not running ANY year. that I've noticed. I really wonder if people who say "Well, I'm not sure I can vote because there just isn't anyone who really speaks to me" also say "Well, this job doesn't really fulfill me in every possible way I can imagine, so I think it's better that I just stay home and not work at all until the perfect job shows up at my doorstep and begs me to sign on the dotted line."

Eva said...

Thank you for the reqyest and your comments. I've been wanting to read your reflections myself. The one good thing for me about this whole Palin issue is that it has motivated me to do more than vote and talk politics in my own circles. I've got to get out and do more of the "hard" work.

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