A Place for Cafe Refugees and Others Like Them

Posts tagged ‘Voting’

Hineni

If the ten days which have just ended had a message for this Jew, it was in the Hebrew word Hineni: “here I am.” This space will not dwell on the spiritual meaning of the word or its significance in a religious sense. This is not the place for such essays. Here is such a place, if you are interested, and, indeed, it is that sermon (including some comments with which I do not agree and not simply the ones about a horrible baseball game from 1978) is one of the reasons the word has particular resonance at this moment.

In the world of the less mystical, though, hineni means that punditry and hand wringing aside, we remain dedicated to the causes that have brought us together here and elsewhere, that elected Franklin Roosevelt to alter government’s mission in 1932, that elected Harry Truman to tell Republicans that the immediate postwar period was not a time to turn back, but to move forward into the greatest period of prosperity the nation has ever known, that elected Presidents Kennedy and Johnson to carry that mission to its next logical place, and, finally to elect President Obama to restore our country as the place of hope and dreams and progress and the example to the world of what can be done when people work together.

Over the past weeks, the President has (belatedly, yes) made that point as forcefully and as clearly as it can ever be made, and his comments this week were the most direct we have heard in a long time.

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Cognitive Dissonance – Today, Sept 15, is International Day of Democracy

http://www.un.org/en/events/democracyday/index.shtml

I ran across this today and was immediately struck how discordant it is with events here in the good ole US of A. Maybe I’m just over sensitive to this stuff. But everywhere I look I run into this kind of thing which reminds me of the wayward path we’ve taken. I sure hope there are enough of us who are noticing this who are content to go to the polls on Nov 4 and roll the dice.

Be Careful What You Wish For

With the primaries out of the way, the board is set and the game is on. I suspect there are those in Washington this morning who are coming to appreciate their infidelities  and maybe even some who will have learned from this experience. With all due respect to those incumbents who’ve really make an honest effort voters seem not to care one bit about that effort. Congresspersons are seen as having succeeded or failed voters as a unit. There are no in betweens.

For those of us, and I am one, who have railed against congress in general I’m ambivalent to the outcome of yesterday. Whatever happens in November is well deserved. If the entire congress changes and we end up with an even greater mess, all those who refused to work together and find the common ground necessary to move the country forward and equitably support the majority, they have no one to thank but themselves.

For all the ‘wrong track’ commentary over time and polling supporting that assertion, why dems and reps find themselves the target of voters ire can’t possibly be misinterpreted. Certainly they’re not unaware of how thoroughly they’ve repeatedly screwed the pooch.

Maybe after the upcoming fiasco they’ll have learned something. One can only hope. In the meantime our patience will be tried like never before. Oh well. I’ll just pull the democratic lever in November, hope for the best and try and avoid the onrushing flood of stupid. Man the life preservers.

The Gift of Fear

Fear, a gift? Think about it. If we listen to our fear, it can keep us from doing some incredibly stupid things.

In 1997, Gavin de Becker wrote a self-help book called “The Gift of Fear.” In it he discusses fear and it’s role in keeping us safe in the face of violence in a number of circumstances, dating, the workplace, home…

He doesn’t mention politics or voting, but I can see the application. Think of it in terms of fight or flight.

Are we going run away and hide from the big scary republicans? Or are we going use our fear of what they are trying to do to this country and fight?

We’ve heard a lot lately about the enthusiasm gap, and how people are so disappointed in Obama that they are just shutting down, and are prepared to stay home. The republicans are using their fear of the big scary black man who is a socialist, facist, marxist, nazi, Kenyan anti-Christ to motivate people to get to the polls and vote for ignorant, loud-mouthed bigots. Meanwhile many, including a large chuck of the left and indies, sound like they are willing to stick their tails between their legs and either stay home or worse yet actually vote for these cretins.

If you just can’t think of one other reason to get off your butt and vote for a dem, any dem, (and I REALLY hope you can, because there are many) do it out of fear.

If they have been able to screw over us so completely as the minority party, just think of what they can do if they (aided and abetted by a handful of gutless wonders with Ds after their names) are the majority party.

It ain’t pretty, and it ain’t right, but we have 2 choices (as I used to say to my kids when I presented them with 2 options, neither of which they liked.) We can stay home/vote repub/vote 3rd party (all of which equal voting repub)  KNOWING that bad things will happen. OR, we can fight, force ourselves to get enthusiastic and vote for the dems no matter what, and have SOME hope that the bad things won’t happen…

I know it is a little dramatic, but work with me on this analogy…

It’s like when a bad man tries to drag you into his van…you are better off fighting like hell and taking the chance you might be harmed in the process, but have the chance of escaping, rather than going with him quietly KNOWING bad things, up to and including dying, will happen.

Is letting the repubs back in control akin to a life and death situation? You know what? For some of us, that answer truly is, YES.

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