The New Hampshire primary is over, and phone has stopped its endless, inane ringing. The fickle pollsters no longer need to pretend to care what I think. We’ve gone back to a “Don’t ask; Don’t yell” policy. This is likely a good thing, for I don’t want to think. Nothing puts me in a worse mood than thinking about the current state of American politics.
However it’s likely best I ventilate a bit. I should get things off my chest, (after a solid month of annoying phone calls at dinner time, and even after bedtime), rather than walking about like a bomb about to explode. Once I’ve gone and pounded sand for a bit I can go back to being a meek and kindly “child care professional”, (baby sitter), at the farm, and deal with small children, who are far smarter than pollsters and politicians.
The thing about small children is that they are basically honest. Even when they think they are being sly, Truth is close to the surface. Without understanding why, they have a close relationship with Truth, which is having a close relationship with God. It takes years to develop the divorce seen in modern politics, with politicians so sly they have completely fooled even themselves.
Children are quite capable of fooling themselves, and often think they can fly (or such), which is why you have to keep an eye on them, because children learn that they are fooling themselves by stubbing a toe or scratching a knee, which is acceptable, or through worse injuries, which is not acceptable. It is all part of learning. Politicians, on the other hand, seemingly never learn, until complete ruin overtakes them, and sometimes the people they lead.
It has gotten to be that “an honest politician” is an oxymoron. Their general premise seems to be that the public consists of imbeciles, who cannot handle the Truth. If politicians ever really believed that “all men are created equal”, this would mean they were conceding that they actually were calling themselves imbeciles, but they apparently do not believe that “all men are created equal”, and apparently think they are superior and smarter than the voters. The public is to be doled out a pablum of sound bites and false promises. They are not to be treated as if they are intelligent and can understand, and are in some ways and at some times smarter than the politicians themselves. Instead voters are to be referred to as “The Sheeple”. In essence, the behavior of many politicians is that of people who do not really believe in Democracy, and are merely going through the motions.
The Truth is that Democracy is a very spiritual concept, based on the idea that every person has value, and has insights that others don’t have. The reason a poor man gets the same vote as a rich man, and an uneducated layman gets the same vote as a highly educated professor, is because we humbly admit we don’t know everything. Rather than automatically despising those who differ, we are suppose to “love our enemies.” Even in cases where we are 99.9% certain we are right, when we lose an election we are to respect those who didn’t see what we were trying to get across. We are to own up to our own failure to communicate, and to try to communicate better. We are to “hate the sin and not the sinner”, and treat others with respect and dignity. What’s more, we are expected to die for this belief, (or watch our sons and daughters die, if we are old and they join the army).
The concept of democracy is based on honesty, and on educating each other about what our honest goals and aims are. It is based on trust, and has no room for skulduggery and lies. To watch a flock of politicians descend on New Hampshire, and all scramble over each other to say as little as possible as loudly as possible, smearing opponents as often as possible (yet attempting to avoid getting the smear on their own fingers), filled me with a profound sense of unease. Would no one say what they intended? Would no one speak the Truth?
People up here take the primary very seriously, but I felt myself becoming cynical. I felt that the main effort of the politicians was to avoid saying anything, because, if they actually said something, a fragment of what they said could be used by an opponent as a soundbite in a smear ad’s false representation of what they actually said. Therefore it was safest to say nothing, in the form of a sort of diluted blandishment. I correctly predicted Trump and Sanders would win, though they struck me as cartoons, because they were the only ones saying anything, and voters had gotten completely fed up with the complete nothingness which the others were spoon-feeding them.
I am starting to feel that is the only way things will change: People will become fed up. But we are not quite that far gone yet. There are still some who think they can benefit at the detriment of others. For example, people are happy if they get a cost-if-living increase, but tend to be furious if the other guy gets a cost-of-living increase and all they get is an tax increase. People can still be played off against each other, but there will come a day when absolutely everyone is disgusted. Things can’t continue like they are.
As the politicians went bopping around the state they often appeared in the setting of town meetings, and drove me nuts by saying nothing with amazing dexterity, even when people tried to corner them and pin them down. Yet occasionally they’d be so cornered that a shadow of a semblance of a hint of a ghost of a position might leak out.
Perhaps this only proves I have the short attention span of a modern American, but before anyone leaked out a hint of a position I had flung up my arms in despair, and my attention had long since gone to do more interesting things, (such as watch clouds), however more shrewd voters gathered all the hints of positions that politicians had leaked out by mistake, here and there across the state, and created computerized spreadsheets that indicated the various politicians actually had some differences. Several even created programs where you could answer a bunch of questions about various topics, and then see which candidate agreed with you most.
My younger daughter was struggling to decide which Republican to vote for. All she had determined was that Donald Trump was “too rude”. The other Republicans only confused her. Therefore she went on line to find a who-to-vote-for program, filled out the questionnaire, and pushed the “run” button. The program told her to vote for Donald Trump, which did not please my daughter one bit. (I am such a cynic that I ventured Trump probably hired someone to write the program.)
When it came time to vote I felt guilty, for I had little desire to vote at all. I hadn’t even found a fringe candidate to vote for in protest. However I did hear Hillary on the radio, and had the abrupt desire to register as a Democrat. I last did that in 1992, when I voted for her husband. Now I had a chance to cast a vote against the Clintons, so that is what I did. Bernie Sanders might faint if he found out a “denier” like myself voted for a person promoting the Global Warming humbug, but I did it to send the Clinton’s a very small and likely inconsequential message: “I was sick of your dishonesty after one year; after a quarter century your deceit has become worse than a cancer.”
Unlike the Clintons, the most honest people I ever talked to were the gay artists of the 1970’s. They took the idea of “if it feels good, do it,” and ran with it. Then when AIDS appeared in the early 1980’s, and there was initially no cure, it mowed down just about all the gay friends I had. People forget that entire neighborhoods became ghost towns.
It seemed to me that, in memory of their honesty, we should be as honest. It is quite possible to be honest without lusting, and without any sort of promiscuity, and especially without hating. However when it comes to the subject of sex people can’t handle honesty, but that is a subject for some other long post. Regarding the Clintons, we got “Don’t ask; don’t tell”, almost as soon as Bill became president. That isn’t what the gay artists I knew in the 1970’s were like at all. They did ask and did tell and were able to frankly discuss things no one else dared speak about, including the fact that sex could be more addicting than heroin.
In any case all the Paula Jones and Monica Lewinsky stuff surfaced not long after that, involving more don’task-don’t-tell, and indicating the president could stretch the truth to amazing degrees even while under oath. He could redefine “having sex”, and state “I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky”, and later state, “it depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is”.
This cannot help but make an ordinary fellow like myself question every other statement, about every other subject, that the man made and makes. However how could this involve his wife?
As soon as she became Secretary of State some odd policy became apparent in our nation’s dealings with the Arab world. Just as the Republicans tried to push some alien ideas into the Arab culture during the process of “Nation Building”, the Democrats were attempting to introduce the idea of Gay Rights.
The idea of Gay Rights would be highly controversial in Arab lands, and likely to generate a considerable backlash, and may have in fact played a part in the Benghazi debacle, and the death of Ambassador Chris Stephens.
I am not saying this was the only factor, however rather than discussing the issue at all, all the blame was aimed at Mark Yousseff, an obscure Copt filmmaker in California, who was angry about Coptic churches being burned down and Copts being persecuted in Egypt. Perhaps the man was given to hatred, which I don’t like, (and fight in myself), but I imagine I can understand the reasons for his rage and his film. Art, after all, is suppose to be about “expressing yourself.” Mark did manage to anger people in Egypt, which was likely his “artistic intent”, but using him as a scapegoat for what happened in Benghazi is simply another example of the Clinton’s policy of “Don’t ask; don’t tell.” The fact the Mainstream Media didn’t ask and didn’t tell simply shows the degree which this philosophy of deceit has been accepted.
The thing about the steady diet of dishonesty fed to the American people is that there is no way for the voters to be properly informed. People have no idea of what is going on, or why things are happening the way they are happening. Increasingly people turn to obscure blogs for news, as they increasingly are fed up with the Media and the Politicians.
People say that “Truth Hurts,” but dishonesty is far more harmful.