Back in November of 2008, I reached the limits of my ability to cope with the ascension of Barack Obama to the Presidency.
I like to think that I argued against his selection manfully, with grace and wit, for more than a year. I defended Sarah Palin against the trendy liberal condescension and some (you may forget) horrifically violent expressions from that side. I tried dialogue with those people on the Left, and received many comments along these lines:
You’ve helped me to realize that conservatives are actual human beings. If only more of those brain-dead, unwashed, regressive, slope-browed provincials were like you!
But just before the election I realized I was standing athwart a tide of naivete and wishful thinking that hasn’t been seen in this country since Ted Kennedy’s driver’s license was renewed. I liken it to the feeling a parent has when they see their teenager about to make a tremendous, possibly life-altering mistake. You can be reasonable; you can yell; you can cry; but ultimately you can’t stop it from happening. Dialogue is pointless.
Of course that was in 2008, when Barack Obama could say with a straight face that his administration would stop the rise of the oceans. Any fair-minded person must see that not only has Barack Obama failed to deliver on his promises, what accomplishments he can claim to have forced through Congress have riven the country and set us on a path to bankruptcy. Our station in the world is reduced by dint of his obsequious pandering to unfriendly nations and ineptitude in domestic economic matters. Our future is in jeopardy due to his stubborn fantasies about the viability of the two-headed, seven-legged baby cow that is Obamacare. The times, they are a’changing. Barack Obama has been bloodied. He can be defeated.
Just lately, I’ve begun to feel a bit of that old partisan fire creep back into my belly. Currently, the energy is being directed at our own nominees to find the right person to take on Obama. The debate is vigorous. Some candidates are clearly superior to others, some are cranks that provide ammunition to the Democrats. Most of the debate I see takes place on Twitter, which can be extremely useful for getting a read on a large section of people immediately. It is also a fine place to share pictures of kittehs.
I don’t know that I have anything constructive to add. What I am fairly good at is saying awful goddam things without the shrill tone that is so unfortunately prevalent in today’s political discourse. If I cannot be constructive, I can still hope to be useful.
Against my expectations, the urge to participate in vigorous political discussion is returning to its 2007-2008 levels. As Homer Simpson might say, “Urge to shill…rising…”