Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Partisan politics

I happen to be registered in the Democratic party. I am not, however, a Democratic partisan: I place zero value in having a member of Democratic party in any office. What I want are candidates who will represent my values. The causation goes the other way: I'm not a progressive because Democratic party politicians happen to be progressive (which they're not), I'm a Democrat because Democratic politicians are not quite as anti-progressive as Republican politicians.

It's the job of the party officials, not the voters, to be partisan. I'm simply appalled when people vote for their party against their values. If you're pro-choice on abortion, you have no business voting for a Republican. The Democratic party is just as conservatively pro-business as any sensible early- and middle-twentieth century Republican. Perhaps more pro-business: The Republican party seems intent on destroying the foundation of 21st century business: a prosperous middle class and a working class making more than mere survival.

(And then there's the whole business of the Republican party undermining the Constitution and the rule of law, which, along with liberal economics, form the foundation of Western civilization.)

One thing that astonishes me is how otherwise intelligent people put tribalism ahead of their own values. The gay Catholic, the pro-choice Republican, and (sigh) the progressive Democrat are all putting loyalty to nothing but a label ahead of their own interests. As Seinfeld says, we're rooting for the shirts.

I'm very unhappy about the coming election. We're already fucked on the Democratic party nomination. Obama will win, not because he's the most progressive or even the most liberal, and not even because he's the better speaker, but because Democrats have yet again fallen hook, line and sinker for lies and bullshit (Clinton's laugh? give me a break) especially electability propaganda. Remember: if it were actually true that Obama were "more electable", he would be more electable precisely because he is more conservative, more Republican and less progressive. (The idea that a black politician from Chicago with the middle name "Hussein" will be less vulnerable to right-wing smear propaganda is completely idiotic.)

To be fair, Clinton is only a whisker less conservative than Obama. The only difference is that Clinton has an actual plan on health care (which is causing her nothing but problems vs. Obama's non-plan). Both are soft on opposition to the Iraq war, both are hawkish on Iran, neither are strong on civil liberties, neither used their Senate seat to exercise any substantial leadership for anything. Both are members of the lick-Republican-ass Pelosi-Reid wing of the party.

Regardless of which conservative gets the Democratic nomination, the choice on election day will be between voting against McCain and "wasting" a vote for someone progressive (probably Green).

On the one hand, so what if Clinton or Obama becomes President? It'll be after a long and brutal campaign, and the right will not stop after the election. The Republican party will commission a special prosecutor to determine if Obama or Clinton is wiping his or her ass from front to back or back to front, and the commercial media will treat this issue as a serious problem.

More importantly, a Democratic president will take all the blame (again, with the collusion of the media) for Iraq, the coming depression, global warming, every school shooting, and the boil on Joe Sixpack's ass. The Democrats will not fight back effectively. They Democratic party is still operating on the old rules, where the truth matters, where you gain advantage by appearing to be fair. They'll try to argue the issues in the kangaroo court of public opinion, already stacked against them.

On the other hand, McCain, while perhaps not himself actually batshit crazy, has spent his campaign fellating the batshit-crazy Ann "Invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity" Coulter and theocratic Mike "Let's replace the Constitution with the Bible" Huckabee wings of the Republican party. (I'll wager real money that Huckabee gets at least a cabinet position in a McCain administration, perhaps even the vice-presidency.) There's something to be said for buying at least a couple of years of someone not actually not-batshit crazy in the Oval Office. Who knows, maybe we can teach the horse how to sing.


  1. Nice post, ya fucking Bum!

    I just posted some thoughts on the same topic at my place:


    Let's just say my perspective is a little different than yours!

  2. How is your perspective different from mine? Partisan politics is the job of the party officials, specifically the superdelegates. I'm just saying that it's not my job as a voter.

  3. (Oh, and you can use anchor tags to keep long URLs from getting clipped.)


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