I’m trying not to dwell on what might have been, though this kind of thing makes it hard.
I can actually look at it now without feeling an ache in my chest and a need to suppress tears.
I’m also able to hold my tongue now, when someone offers a completely idiotic opinion about Obama’s second term.
Actual quotes (I wish to heaven I was making these up) from colleagues at The Store Where I Work include:
“I voted for Obama because he’s into green energy. We’ll get further away from using oil with him as president. We need to get away from oil.”
Oh really? You walked to work, did you? That combination of stupidity and hypocrisy had me literally biting my tongue to refrain from responding.
And then there was the comment about Texas going for Romney:
“Why the hell would anyone even want to live in Texas? Bush lives there.”
There is no expiration date on Bush Derangement Syndrome. And it’s so profound the entire state of Texas is to be despised because of his presence within it.
And best of all, from someone way old enough to know better:
“With Obama as president, hopefully your son won’t be deployed because there won’t be any more wars.”
That’s so effing asinine on so many levels I couldn’t even begin to respond to it. Eldest Son is a career USAF pilot. He’s going to be a pilot long after Obama’s left Washington (assuming Obama doesn’t attempt a reprise of what happened in Germany on August 2, 1934). At some point Eldest Son will be deployed somewhere, because that’s the point of being a USAF pilot. And anyone who believes that ANY president can somehow bring about world peace is both ineffably naive and woefully ignorant of history, human nature, and current world events.
Yes, those were voting adults speaking, all well over 21 years of age, and all earnestly sincere.
Other than unleashing a scathing tirade on one hapless soul the day after the election (he made the mistake of asking “Are you happy with the election results?”), I’ve refused to engage in any political discussions at work. None of the above comments, all of which were directed specifically at me, drew so much as a word from me. I just won’t go there because if I did, it would not end well.
And there would be no point. You can’t fix stupid. And apparently you can’t even vote it out.
Well, by the time I visit this blog again the election will be over, and we will have a new president. Or not. I’d prefer not to think about the possibility of not.
As I told Youngest Son though, sometimes we get what we deserve. He said “What did I ever do to deserve Obama?” My response was, “Perhaps our current government is a case of ‘visiting the sins of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation’.”
In other words, he and his generation are paying for the foolish choices of their ancestors.
The only comfort I could offer him was the fact that governments–all governments–are temporary. God is eternal. And He’s ultimately the boss of us, not whomever resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
All that being said, I hope we elect what we need tomorrow, not what we might deserve.
I’ll be working at a local precinct as poll inspector, a roll I filled in 2008. Roughly half the registered voters in the Master Roster I was given are voting by mail this year. So I don’t expect the polling place to be too busy. And from all I’ve seen, read and heard, I don’t expect an influx of newly registered clueless voters who are there because they’re wanting to do something historic (i.e. voting for the first black president).
If there is an influx of newly registered voters this year, I hope they’re anything but clueless, and vote with far more wisdom than their predecessors.
The following photo illustrates:
1. Two union reps from the NEA rallying in support of Obama/Biden.
2. Two of the teachers Obama wants to hire if he’s reelected.
3. A typical product of our public school system.
4. What happens when you don’t proofread (or know how to spell in the first place) while printing political t-shirts.
5. All of the above.
Sometimes Jon Stewart’s show manages to capture things that are so painfully funny they’re almost satire. Almost. And then you realize that the people in them are serious. And unaware of how perfectly they’re illustrating a point.
To be fair, I don’t think all Democratic National Convention goers are this intellectually impaired. However, I do believe that the majority of people who attend political conventions are much like those who attend science fiction conventions, or any other convention for that matter. They’re extremely dedicated to their particular area of interest, and prone to excessive demonstrations of loyalty.
Which can make them look and sound a little bit crazy at times.
..at least, according to the Democrats, we do:
This is a clip from a video played at the Democratic National Convention.
The most benign interpretation is that the government is like an all-inclusive social club. We all are members of it. We don’t even have to be U.S. Citizens, we just have to be living on American soil, and we belong to the government. It will take care of us, meet all our needs, help us buy a house, a car, get a job, provide medical care for us, including birth control and abortions, and when we’re too old to work, make sure we are provided for.
This perspective however, places the government above the people, and the people who elected the government underneath it. Dependent upon it. The Democrats can say that we’re all “part of the government,” but what does that mean, except that we belong to it. In a very real way (highlighted every time we pay taxes) they apparently think it owns us.
Which somehow I don’t think is what America’s founders intended.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
We consent to be governed. Our government exists only because we agree to it. The people who actually are part of the government–elected officials–are there because we put them there to serve us. Not the other way around.
When a government no longer is responsive to those it governs, when it no longer heeds those from whom its “just powers” derive:
…whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.
Of course, the founding fathers were a bunch of upper class white men and most of what they wrote was wrong anyway.
Hat Tip to physicsguy at Neo-NeoCon
Edited to add: Allahpundit at HotAir eloquently expressed what is so wrong with the idea that government is “the only thing we all belong to,”
How psychologically impoverished must you be to find validation in “belonging” to a government? You’re forced to “join,” your “dues” are typically squandered on stupid, wasteful projects, half of the other members are perpetually at your throat, and the whole thing is shot through with corruption at every level. It’s essentially the world’s biggest and worst union (and worst in part because it’s biggest). In fact, didn’t we just spend an entire week listening to the left’s friends in the media tell us how racist Republicans are? Why would any liberal want to belong to a group with people like that in it? This rhetoric is pure communitarian garbage, designed to inculcate some perverse civic pride in the ideas that (a) government will continue to grow and usurp your choices and, more importantly, (b) you need to pay more “dues,” even though government’s already so big that realistically there’s no amount you could pay to make it sustainable. Loathsome.
I watched bits of the Republican Convention, basically all the speeches while fast forwarding (thank you TiVO) past the talking head commentaries. For me, one of the best parts was Clint Eastwood’s empty chair monologue.
And then I read the media reactions to it. And I wondered if they’d watched the same thing I did. What I saw was dry wit, satire, a very funny bit of entertainment wrapped around a core truth (“when somebody does not do the job, we got to let them go”).
The more they scream “racism!” at the Republican party, the more apparent the Democrats’ own racism becomes.
The man has squeaked through 4 years of an amateur presidency marked by narcissism, laziness, and incompetence, and he’s not able to be mocked? Because he’s black? That earns him a “Get Out of Mockery Free” card? Screw that.
In a typical fit of peevishness, Obama responded to being Eastwooded with this:
And thereby only helped to establish the Empty Chair meme.
Speaking of empty chairs, suits, and heads, for further entertainment as the campaign reaches its final months I’d like to see Joe Biden debate Paul Ryan. I’d buy tickets for that circus act.
C. S. Lewis once wrote, “There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilization – these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit — immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.”
The people of China are just that, immortal individuals. They are capable of acts of individual bravery.
They are also capable of acts of unthinkable depravity.
Since last August, customs officials in South Korea say they have intercepted between 17,000 and 17,500 pills filled with finely-ground human baby flesh, which is said to be both a stamina-enhancer and medical panacea in parts of Asia.
The Daily Mail explains:
The grim trade is being run from China where corrupt medical staff are said to be tipping off medical companies when babies are aborted or delivered still-born.
The tiny corpses are then bought, stored in household refrigerators in homes of those involved in the trade before they are removed and taken to clinics where they are placed in medical drying microwaves.
Once the skin is tinder dry, it is pummeled into powder and then processed into capsules along with herbs to disguise the true ingredients from health investigators and customs officers.
…Even more horrifying, if possible, some are reporting that it may not have only been aborted or stillborn babies used in the pills– it‘s possible that some were born and left to die in China’s “dying rooms” before being ground for the capsules, because they were born into families that already had one child.
Of course, Chinese officials are not responding to media questions, and they are not publicly decrying the situation (nor will they be pressed to do so by South Korea, due to concern over a potential “diplomatic rift”).
God forbid we should cause a diplomatic rift over something as trite as 21st century Soylent Green.
God forbid anyone should question why China retains “most favored nation” status despite Tiananmen Square, its one-child policy and forced abortion. We are urged to accept that tainted milk and melamine-laced pet food are isolated incidents, not examples of a prevailing ethos that scorns fundamental human rights. I’m sure the “stamina capsules” filled with powdered human flesh are just an isolated situation, and not a flagrant in-your-face example of how little the Chinese government and Chinese businesses value ethics and human life in general.
Including the lives of their own people, and especially the lives of Chinese children. Illegal babies (i.e. conceived without the permission of the government and disposed of in the millions each year) are of more value as a “stamina pill” than they are as living breathing human beings.
I submit that the Chinese government does not believe that its citizens are capable of individual splendors, nor does it care about the individual horrors in its midst (it is individuals who are making the decision to produce and market such an abomination, and individuals who are processing the dead infants into powder). As long as money is to be made and power is to be held onto, officially there is nothing untoward occurring in China.
If there’s enough outcry over human flesh sold as a nutritional supplement, the Chinese government will just find some hapless mid level official, execute him, and the “problem” will be solved.
Nope, nothing to see there. Carry on.