Friday, August 10, 2012

Rules for Being Involved in American Politics

This is going to be rantish, because I've read a few things recently that really pissed me off.  These rules are more like statements about the state of American politics; statements both about the elected and the electorate.

The other day Jersey called me "jingoistic," because of my lampoon of a campaign poster.  This has taken me down a line of logic that has led me to the conclusion that American politics is completely fucked, and that there is no such thing as "an adult conversation," anymore.  So if we know it's not serious, why take it so seriously?

Without further ado, here are the rules.

10.  Feelings are king (or queen)!
Who gives a shit about things like "ideas" or what Albert Camus refers to as "reconciling everything we believed."  You don't need to make sure that your worldview is logically consistent, because often times logical consistency will lead you to feeling uncomfortable, depressed even.  It's much easier to just believe that your feelings somehow mean something rather than to admit to yourself that your feelings are many times complete bullshit.  So why bother torturing yourself when you can just push aside facts, logic, and reason and feel good about your world-view?

9.  70% of the time, statistics are 65% accurate every time.
That's a play on a line from Anchorman starring Will Ferrel ("60% of the time it works every time).  Here's the thing I've noticed about statistics: there's statistics out for everything, and often times those statistics will directly contradict one another.  But that's okay, because so long as you can find a statistic that somewhat agrees with your feelings (see rule 10), then that means it's 100% true.

8.  Everyone who isn't (insert your political party) obviously hates America.
Barack Obama clearly hates America.  Actually, so does Mitt Romney.  Holy shit: EVERYONE HATES AMERICA.  It's amazing that the United States has survived so long with so many politicians who have dedicated their careers to destroying this country.  If you believe that the rich should be taxed more, then you obviously hate America.  If you believe that Americans have the inalienable right to bear arms, then you obviously hate America.

7.  The guy you vote for always has your best interest at heart.
The reason that all the rich Republicans want fewer restrictions on the market is definitely because they think it will line YOUR pockets with more gold.  They are completely disinterested.  And the Democrats want the welfare state to continue forever, and to spend money on welfare programs that don't help people find gainful employment simply because it's the right thing to do.  They don't count on those welfare lifers to vote for them or anything.  Also, everyone in DC wants everything to change, even the congressmen who have benefitted the most off of everything being screwed up.  Congressmen and women don't care about votes: they just care about "the people" (who vote for them).

6.  Compromise is for spineless assholes.
You can't always get what you want.  And if you're a (insert your rival political party) you actually can NEVER have what you want, because what you want will fuck everything up beyond repair.  What you want is to turn America into a vast totalitarian state in which we're all controlled by Big Brother.  Or, you obviously want all of America to be a big anarchy in which all the rich people feast on the flesh of the poor people's babies.  Oh, you also want to make Islam America's official religion, and you definitely think that America is meant only for white people of European descent.  So it's my way, or the highway.  Asshole!

5.  If a media source presents facts that contradict your beliefs, that media source is clearly biased and therefore not credible.
Well I mean this goes without saying.  We simply can't trust a news report from the Associated Press, because their facts are a clear representation if media bias.  How dare they present facts that support the party I hate!  You know what I'm going to do?  I'm going to go to Crooks and Liars for a fair and ballanced account!  There is only one side to see in all of this: my side.  Any other perspective is just trying to trick me!  How dare the AP talk about the Occupy Oakland violence that was started by the protestors.  Those facts are clearly biased!

4.  All Democrats/Republicans, Liberals/Conservatives are the same.
Republicans are all racist, and Democrats are all commies.  Anyone who ever mocks Obama is clearly a jingoistic asshole who hates Obama, liberty, and puppies.  If you're an asshole who actually defends Obama, then you're an Obama appologist who hates Amurrrica, liberty, and morality.  If you support gun rights, you're a gun-nut.  If you are pro-choice, then you're a liberal hippie who hates babies.  You're either with us, or you're against us.

3.  White vs. Black is always racist, Black vs. White is always justified.
A "white" guy shoots a black teenager who allegedly assaulted him: definitely racist.  A group of black guys who capture, torture, rape, and murder a white couple: can't possibly be racist.  A white guy calls a black guy "lazy."  Well he's definitely a member of the KKK.  A black guy who calls a white guy an "oppressor," or tells his black friend to stop "acting white?"  Well that's okay because his ancestors were enslaved by white men 150 years ago.  Also, "gangsta rap," is just counter-culture and completely permissible, while white supremacist music is just plain hateful and violent.

2.  The religion of other people, or lack thereof, is a clear indication of their inferiority.
Well, if you're a Muslim then you obviously want to jihad everyone.  If you're not jihading everyone, then it's only a matter of time before you do.  Because Islam is a religion of pure violence, and eventually all Muslims everywhere are going to rise up and murder their Christian and Jewish oppressors.  Oh, and all of you are completely retarded anyway because you believe in God in the first place.  Only a sheople would believe in something as asinine as God.  Your religion, and religion in general, is the antithesis of everything American.

1.  Say ANYTHING that supports your position, even if you have no idea if it's true.
Facts are for "academians" and professors who sit in their ivory towers.  If you want to really prove your point, then just say whatever you want on national TV.  Obama was born in Kenya?  Sure.  Romney hasn't paid taxes in 10 years?  Why not.  I mean, who gives a shit about veracity knowing that maybe, MAYBE, .0001% of the people who hear those obviously crazy statements will actually hop on the interwebs and do some fact checking.  All that matters is that you rally more people to your side.


KP said...

<< All that matters is that you rally more people to your side. >>

Admittedly, that shit is wearing my out.

I am thinking I may need to spend more time on my inner circle and less time on the macro world view and American politics. Focus on the small circles in my life; the things that I can immediately impact by raising their quality. Being a better husband, father, son, brother, friend, mentor, my own health.

When I was in my twenties I had a good friend who got the lead on the day time soap "Days Of Our Lives". I started watching him (and DOOL) nearly every day at lunch. It was great! I was hooked. I had to know what Beau and Hope were doing!

Then I missed a couple weeks. No big deal, the story lines were the same and I caught right back up.

Then I missed a couple months. I watched again and realized I hadn't missed anything! WTF?!

So, I stopped watching for a couple years, got on my bike, ran and swam instead. I ate lunch with my kids. I lost 30lbs, was ripped, tanned, happy and improved my family's life.

I saw an advertisement for the DOOL ten years later and the cast was almost the same. My pal was no longer on it and I instinctively knew nothing much had changed on DOOL, but a lot had changed in my life.

It reminds me of politics; people getting over on people and getting others over to your side. It's a fucking soap opera.

Jersey McJones said...


Perhaps I should clarify.

Let's put it this way:

Most all my working life, I worked for foreign companies, and worked with many, many more.

I've seen the way other people look at us, and it was healthy eye-opener.

I remember, back in late-November 2004, when a British conservative friend of mine came back to The States after a visit home, I ran into him in the early morning and he said to me, flatly, nothing but this: "What happened???," (emphasis his), as he was so shocked we were stupid enough to reelect Bush.

To the rest of the world, President Bush was a bad, dumb joke. He made us look bad.

I guess I just see any hint of jingoism as abhorrent because I've seen the way other people see it. It's not that they're offended, as they're mostly not. It's just that it makes us look stupid. And that's embarrassing to me.

And that whole "politically incorrect" thing is just sooooo insipid. Fuck all that. Just move around it. No serious person is any more incorrect than correct when it comes to that nonsense.


Jack Camwell said...

Sigh. My little campaign poster is not even a LITTLE BIT jingoistic, and this list of "rules" should hilight that.

I'm fed up with the bullshit on both sides, and I feel like there is little left to do but make fun of how ridiculous they all are.

Trust me, if there was a Romney poster I could lampoon, I'd do it.

Silverfiddle said...

Jersey worked in a freightyard so now he's an international consultant.

Jersey's British friend was working off of perceptions fed by a press that viscerally hated George Bush.

@KP: I am thinking I may need to spend more time on my inner circle and less time on the macro world view and American politics. Focus on the small circles in my life; the things that I can immediately impact by raising their quality. Being a better husband, father, son, brother, friend, mentor, my own health.

Amen to that, brother!

Unfortunately, our feral government has grown so out of control that is has invaded the smallest of our circles.

Used to be, we could live our daily lives with our families and communities and voluntary associations and never have to worry about politics, because it was something that went on in Washington. DC has invaded every last corner of our lives, so now everything is about politics, and that is what people are sick of.

Give us back our lives!

Jersey McJones said...

Silver, don't be a lying scumbag. I worked for the headquarters of two of the world's largest container lines for many years, in import service a documentation and later accounts management. Before that, I was an inspector in the auto-parts mfg business, for the British and then the Germans.

But then, I wouldn't expect you to recognize when someone actually knows what they're talking about, considering you believe in silly myths like "voter fraud."

There's one born every minute, huh?


Ducky's here said...

6. Compromise is for spineless assholes.

No, compromise is for Democrats.

Since Duverger's law sticks us with the two party system we need to find a modest way to make it work.
Now since the Republicans are confrontational negotiators and the Dems (especially Obummer) are compromise negotiators the Dems loose because the confrontational party wins in that situation.

So the Dems have to be confrontational, compromise is for losers in today's realpolitik

Jack Camwell said...

Ducky I think you *completely* missed the entire point of the article.

I'm basically saying that people who think compromise is a bad thing are the reason why American politics has completely broken down.

There are no adult conversations to be had in American Politics today, because most people involved are petulent children who are afraid to actually play the game of give and take.

And you've clearly fallen for the big game that is "negotiation." Both parties remain obstinate until 11:59 pm when they throw their hands up and say "well SOMETHING has to be done. If it wasn't for those bastard (Democrats/Republicans) we could have made some real change."

Grats bro. You've been snowed.

Jack Camwell said...

BTW, thank you for visiting, Ducky.