Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Post Super Tuesday Wednesday… that’s not so super…

I hurried home from work last night. I could wait to sit down in front of the tube and watch… no, not sports. But you knew that, right? No! Yesterday was Super Tuesday! People say it’s like the Super Bowl of politics but, of course, it’s not. The Presidential Election is the Super Bowl of politics. Super Tuesday is unlike any event in sports and, for political junkies, it’s unlike anything. The world stops and waits and watches… and gets filled with pundits making wild guesses. It’s fun!

So, I planted myself… and I watched.

(Vicky had gone away, leaving a space heater on in the house, so I had to interrupt my political geek-gasm to lecture her on Talking Heads songs, but anyway…)

When Vicky returned home, she said, “I guess I’ll go upstairs.” That’s code for “I can’t stand to watch another fucking hour of your political porn!”

But first, we voted! We took our puppy, Suki, on a walk to the polling place and each of us took turns going inside to drop off our absentee ballot. What? It saves a stamp! Then, we walked back and… the race was on! Hour by hour passed as we watched states getting taken from coast to coast. (Yes, I cut school - can you blame me???) We were sad when Obama lost Massachusetts. We laughed when Mittens Romney lost… over and over… We were happy when Obama took more states than Clinton. We were annoyed when Huckleberry’s promise of an American Theocracy won him the south. We were sad when Obama lost California.

But Vicky stayed right in front of the TV and watched the whole thing. I guess I’m having a good influence on her. Even after 9:30 rolled around and I said, “I need to go to bed,” she kept watching. Finally, around 10pm, we shut off the TV, filled to overflowing with SuperBowl leftovers (can one survive off of chips and salsa?) and politics. Ah, bliss.

After learning yesterday about the head of the CIA confessing to using torture, this election meant more than it ever had. (I posted this over on My Side yesterday but wanted you to know as well. Oddly enough, there’s not been a whole lot of crossover of readers from one blog to another. Each has it’s own distinct readership. Understood, you One Path pansies, but this is important.) Listening to the Repugnicans give their speeches, I couldn’t help think about how they are endorsing the use of torture, the violation of the Geneva Convention, as well as basic, human rights. They want that. When Huckleberry endorses his theocracy, it is with the exclusion of Jesus’ law of “Love thine Enemy”. It’s a theocracy, as are all theocracies, based on fascism. When Mittens talks about changing Washington, he’s just talking about getting rid of Democrats, so we’ll hear less about what we’re doing wrong and delude ourselves that we’re right. And whenever McCain talks, I am reminded about how easily he folded over the torture issue, a man who had torture used on him. How better to define “spineless”?

Clinton gave a speech last night filled with facts and figures. Hers is not a campaign designed to inspire but, rather, to say, “I am electable.” Over and over and over again, until we get it. I get it. But that doesn’t make me want to elect her. She’s a far better choice than any Republican; this is true. Then again, so am I. So is my dog. So what.

What Vicky and I were waiting for was to hear Obama speak. If you haven’t listened to him, yet, you surely must. I don’t know how anyone can walk away unaffected, uninspired, by the man. I’ll admit it. I’m a believer. I did not vote for him yesterday but, then, I’m not a Democrat. But I look forward to casting my vote for him in November.

The question remains, of course, if he’ll make it. He lost California and that’s a big prize. What he has to do now is, basically, win everything that remains. Thankfully, it looks like he just may. The remaining primaries come in small groups, two or three states rather than twenty plus, and that’s where Obama works the best. He can go in one at a time and actually have a chance to speak to people and he’ll win. Clinton has said she wants a debate each week from here on in, thinking it will work in her favor. What she’s not figuring is how people will respond when they listen to her and Obama side by side.

It’s still a close race and it will remain that way. That’s fine. Political junkies like me eat that shit up.

But it’s more than just a horse race, let’s not forget. When the issues are as clear as they presently are, it’s about far more. It’s about whether we support torture or not. The Republicans are on record supporting it. With the housing crisis started by lack of regulation (bad loans didn’t start from too much), it’s about if we want more families to lose their homes. It’s about if we care. It’s about whether we support wars of aggression and oil companies raping the environment and our wallets and a disregard of our fundamental ideals in the form of the Constitution for political gain. That’s what the Republicans have gone on record to support.

In the face of that, we need more than proof of electability in the person of someone who votes for war in Iraq and war in Iran, in the person of someone who has said she’ll ignore the election rules, in the person of someone who plays political games. In the face of that, we need more than games. We need a person who will inspire us to live up to our ideals, who won’t stand for wars of aggression, and who has gone on record against the oil lobbyists.

Obama’s got a long road ahead of him, but that’s part of what makes this fun to watch.

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