Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Kerry's Conceded - Now What?

Well, I've just heard that Kerry has conceded. I was hoping against hope that Ohio would magically turn this thing around. Kerry's folks must have looked at the numbers and decided that for the sake of unity to go ahead and fold the hand. It’s depressing, though not because Kerry lost, and while that is a blow, but because the Republicans have enlarged their majorities in both the House and the Senate. We did get through 8 years of Ronald Reagan, though we did that with a Democratic Congress. With Bush the Democrats have no control, other than filibuster, and Republicans are going to run rampant. The next 4 years will show the world what radical conservatism is all about. Speaking of the world--Sorry guys --we tried.
OK--Now what? Reality-Based right? I was very optimistic going into this election. I had hopes that someone a little more to the center would have the opportunity to select almost half of the Supreme Court. I can pretty much imagine that Roe vs. Wade is out of here. I hope all the women who voted for Bush realize that they probably just handed the right to decide about their future and how their body is used to a bunch of senile old men. I am probably guilty of getting to much of my information from left leaning sources which is not necessarily healthy for your point of view. My disdain for CNN and Fox and what the sheep were seeing on the TV didn't provide the warning I should have taken. It is really hard for me to grasp that the majority of the people in this country liked the last four years so much that they want more. I guess fear is a better campaign strategy than I imagined seeing as how it managed to completely discount the incompetence and failure. I am disappointed that the majority of Americans are willing to continue to waste the lives of our young men and women in the Middle East on an absolutely unmitigated disaster. Not to mention the wasted treasure that has so many more uses here at home and around the world.
What about the Democratic Party? Why did we lose this election? I don't think we lost it on the big issues of war or the economy but on the wedge issues of gay marriage and fear of terrorism. Karl Rove was right to play on the fear and prejudice of what appears to be the majority of Americans. I think we had the best candidate in John Kerry. His arguments for the central issues and rational thought didn't connect and were not as effective as the fear. We need to recognize that the Republican Party has spent 40+ years building their machine. It was rather wide-eyed for us to believe that we could match it in four years. We couldn't turn around the linguistic changes they have managed such as liberal equals communist and social issues equals welfare. They have control of most of the media both TV and all of radio. We only have Air America and the Daily Show.
We lost this election, not for like of trying, and it hurts. Bush and company will try and push the world closer to its end in the next four years it probably won’t end. They will probably control the Supreme Court for the next generation or so and it will be bad. We have to re-group and re-think our strategies. We have to work at countering the machine. Our efforts in the last four years were an attempt to prevent some very bad things from happening to our country and the world. While we have lost this battle it doesn't change how important it is to continue to try and change the course or how badly we need to win the war. I don't think the money that I poured into John Kerry's campaign was wasted and I think it taught us some important things. This is not a small battle and it won't be won in one election. It is a battle to change the way people think in this country. It is a lot like the people who flock to Wal-Mart for that extra few cents savings. They aren't thinking in the big picture or the long term about how the low wage jobs they are encouraging are hurting their neighbors and destroying their communities. They don't realize that there is no such thing as a free lunch and that the pennies they are saving are coming out of their pockets somewhere else and some other time. We have to begin to teach people to think and be very cynical about what they are told by the media in this country. Take a deep breath and look forward to the next challenge.

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