3.5 million votes is alot of people.
I don't feel very red, white, and blue today.
As Dark Helmet once said, “Evil will always triumph, because good is dumb.”
On the bright side, Bunning won. Oh wait, that isn't good - he's having mental problems and didn't show up to one of his debates. Way to go, Kentucky!
Given the total misdirection of the exit polls, I think the headlines should read, "The Nation Embarassed it Re-Elected Bush."
This election has been very disheartening for me. I guess we are so divided that a president that has done this poorly, still gets votes from his side - a lot of votes. I wonder if I would vote for a Republican if things were reversed. I would like to think so.
Embarassed is a key word for me. I think embarassed is why the exit polls were so far off. I think in many circles, people are embarassed to say they voted for Bush , but did anyway because fear won out.
In other bright news, Jim DeMint won in South Carolina. He believes gays and unmarried mothers should not be allowed to teach in schools.
I am not ashamed to say that I have spent a portion of this morning in tears. And on top of everything, I think I am developing an irrational hatred of christians in general.
Hey, did anyone happen to notice the number of states that had the gay marriage ban on the ballot? I think there were 11 states. And in all of the states, it passed! I think the closest margin was Oregon and still almost 60% of people oppose gay marriage. I think this explains a lot about the election. America is largely comprised of people who watch televangelists and listen to Christian rock. I've never felt more alienated.
I wish these people would stop calling themselves "Christians" as if everyone within that broad tradition agrees with them. There are, by last count, five major Christian traditions are represented in America: the Roman Catholics (of which there are varying levels of conservatism), the mainline protestants (united methodists, presbyterian church USA, etc), the evangelical protestants, the Eastern Churches (often called Orthodox), and a miscellaneous category that includes the mormons and Christian scientists.
The fastest growing of these groups is the Evangelicals and they are the ones that listen to televangelists and listen to that crappy music and believe that their marriage is somehow threatened by gay people getting married. They often get lumped in with the other Protestants, but in fact they've got a very differnt approach to all of it.
My colled advisor (I majored in religion) often lamented the dumbing down of religion in this country. There was a time when the local minister was likely the most educated person in a community. Those were the days.
So Stef, you can hate them without hating Christians in general, if that makes you feel any better.
You know, I am always afraid to post much about my political opinions for fear of sounding dumb. But here I go.
I was wondering about Dark Helmet's point last night as I tried to fall asleep. The academic circle is generally liberal, right? And am I horribly off base to say that the majority of the educated folk migrate to the coasts? (Chicago provides a cool blue oasis in the midsection Red Sea.)
I tried to stay sane on the phone with a friend last night while more and more states turned scarlet, in complete disbelief that so many people can vote for somebody who stands for hatred. She responded that for most people, that's not what the election is about. AU CONTRAIRE! This morning NPR said that most people who said that "Moral Values" were the #1 reason people said they voted for Bush. WHAT MORALITY? Hatred of people who are different from you? Denial of basic rights to people based on who they choose to sleep with at night? The morality that says that Donald Trump deserves a huge tax break while people in my neighborhood are struggling to make ends meet?
Just noticed the colors today. Nice touch.
...and mad props to my friends in Minnesota for keeping some of the midwest sane.
The Republicans won for basically three reasons:
1) Conservatism is inherently easier to sell than liberalism. People are and much more inclined to listen to somebody that is telling them "everything is fine. Our country is great. You deserve whatever you get." Now, of course, this doesn't appeal to poor people, but poor make up a small part of the electorate.
2) People who don't know how to think critically don't know that they don't know how to think critically, so they're easily misled when they actually think of themselves as well informed. This relates to point 3.
3) Our media is awful. They don't ask intelligent questions. They think debate is just two people shouting at each other. They publish whatever the president says unchallenged. They let politicians frame the terms of an issue. It has a lot to do with the consolidation of media into 5 massive corporations, but there's more to it than that.
After getting over a lot of anger, I'm starting to point the blame less at the stupidity and fear of the electorate and more at the kind of information they got to make their decision. If on an average day they sit through 2 minutes of thoughtful analysis and over an hour of soundbites, "horse race" reports, and campaign ads featuring false statements and imagery of freaking WOLVES prowling around, then, well, they're doing the best with what they have. I'm going to propose a voting system based on IQ; if it's 100, you get 100% of your vote counted, otherwise, the weight of your vote is proportional to your IQ. Since it's a Bell curve it should all total out perfectly. Mississippi could be the new Rhode Island!
I have dressed in black today. Thanks for the dimming of color on the website in mourning, Jay.
one minute i'm feeling depressed,fearful and actually kinda sick to my stomach (can only imagine how stacy & stef must be feeling who probably also feel that on top of their legitimate nausea), followed by supreme disapointment in the majority of people we share this country with, then kinda numb, followed by lots of bitterness and anger.
i don't know how i can stand another four years of bush's shit eating grin on top of all this.
There have been more abortions performed in the U.S. from 200-2004 than there were from 1996-2000. Americans need to stop voting on kneejerk "morality" wedge issues and realize that life is complicated, will never be like 'Leave it to Beaver,' accept that there are necessary evils (if that's what you want to call them) and realize that caring about poor people is also a morality issue ... and doing so can have positive effects on the other morality issues. When jobs are lost people have more abortions. Screaming at women outside of clinics isn't going to change that.
Disgusted, I would privately email you this message, but you've never been thoughtful enough to leave a legitimate email. Your IP address is logged and I'm aware that you have posted under at least 7 different names here over the past year. My site is not your anonymous message board. I haven't moved to a registration or monitoring based comment system because the rest of the community here has the decency to sign one name to their thoughts. I don't care if you use a fake name, but I'd ask you use it consistently or find somewhere else to post.
It was my impression that the voting really came down to the "fear" issue: many people feel that we've been safe in the U.S. since Sept. 11th, and if we put in a new leader, that could change. I don't know that this election was more complicated than that. Unless the democrats had a way of convincing people that changing leaders would not lead to another big terrorist strike in the U.S. - only Bush could win.
The people that I talked to that were on the fence about who to vote for relied on this position as their main motivation for leaning towards Bush. This may be obvious, but people (americans?) hold their own lives as more valuable than any other issue. Who cares about the economy, iraq, abortion, the environment, or gay marriage if you're going to get attacked by a terrorist and die?
I was watching some of CNN last night, and they were like, "oh, it looks like this election was won on social issues, and NOT on fear...blah, blah, blah" but I don't buy that. At least not for much of the swing vote.
That moral values crap has been totally overblown. I think there was one exit poll that showed that 25% (a plurality, but hardly a majority) of Bush voters said they liked his "moral values," but that's highly ambiguous. For a lot of people the war in Iraq and everywhere else *is* about "moral values."
It pisses me off to no end how the media just sits there like a bunch of dumb animals shaking their heads "oh, moral values. Well I guess that means the 700 Club is running the country now. How 'bout that? Over to Bob with the weather."
In any event, screw them. Just because a handful of Bible thumpers and Bill Bennett want America to be "a more decent place" is not cause for us to throw out the Bill of Rights and the founding concepts of personal liberty and freedom of conscience. America has always had jackasses like them, and we much continue to fight against their assualt on the first ammendment (among others). Jefferson, et al. are rolling in their graves.
Part of me feels like going out and publicly performing unspeakable acts of depraved indecency just to piss them off.