All Rights Reserved © 2006 Thomas W. Day
The election is over. Republicans lost the U.S. House and won a microscopic (1 vote) advantage in the Senate. The American public spoke and their voice was heard. Yeah, right. A single "accidental death," like Paul Wellstone's, could allow a nutty Republicrat governor to appoint an equally crazy Republicrat replacement, putting Cheany in the deciding vote position in the Senate. All that energy into one of the most stunning electoral repudiations of government in US history and it can all be overturned by one of the old farts in the Senate acting naturally and dying.
It's true that the public spoke with their feet and votes. It's true that the nation's anti-war sentiment is pretty damn strong and that a few Demolicans managed to identify that movement and march at a safe distance behind the voting public. In the end, even before the polls closed Pelosi and crew were backing off of their promises and rearranging their priorities. Power corrupts and political parties are all about power. It's going to take a lot more than an election to fix the mess the Republicrats have made in the world. In fact, I suspect it's beyond fixing.
A few years back, Michael Moore produced a film called "Bowling for Columbine." The film obviously had an agenda and Michael pursued it relentlessly until he discovered, near the end, that his original premise was disproved by Canada and Switzerland; two countries with possibly more heavily armed civilian populations than the U.S. He ended the film, honestly and sadly, without a conclusion.
He gave me a lot to think about, though. My conclusion, as usual, is that every institution (government is the ultimate institution, size-wise) is led and inspired top-down. Since the early years of the 1800's, the United States government has been a violently corrupt institution; invading neighbors to steal territory, devastating Native American populations out of greed and general viciousness, and beginning the tradition of destabilizing other countries' governments so our robber barons can take advantage of their natural resources without interference. The 1800s turned our for-and-by-the-people government into a corporate tool for the hostile takeover of anything not bolted down and well-defended. We'll whip out the guns and cannons and bombers for practically any justification imaginable. Is it any wonder that neighbors resort to trading bullets over property disputes, marital arguments, or parking space? It's a national tradition.
As individuals, we might be tired of sending our children to foreign wars of corporate interest. As a nation, we're perfectly happy to toss kids into flames if someone convinces us that it will make a Bush, Rockefeller, or Halliburton a little richer. In fact, there are whole regions of the United States that specialize in producing cannon fodder; Nebraska, Kansas, South Dakota, Mississippi, and most of rural America, for example. It takes, literally, minimal motivation for parents of these states to decide to send their boys and girls into the breach. They have been conditioned, since the Civil War, to toss their kids into the hands of politicians and corporations anytime the words "patriotism," "national security," or "threat to the economy" are mentioned. I am going to be hard-pressed to imagine that anything in this last election will alter that national mindset.
War is such a vicious, terrible, evil option that it's hard to imagine why a nation would select a foolish, slimy, amoral scumbag like Bush or Chaney to a position where they might be able to sacrifice nature or youth to their whims. It's a critical human fault that puts serious doubt on any "intelligent design" fantasy.
I don't see this election as a solution to any of the country's worst problems. A single Demolican defection on any vote will maintain the status quo. A single assassination would return the country to 2000's Republicrat corruption. Do you really think that Chaney and the Oil Barons wouldn't kill anyone to keep the oil money flowing unimpeded? We're a long way from out of the frying pan and the fire is still burning under the pan.