Illustration of Derek Powazek by Adam Ellis

NaBloPoMo Q&A 3: Politics

Hannah ranted:

the floor is open, you say…ok, so what do you think of your country’s invaision of Iraq and the wounded US troops who cannot get proper medical care upon their return home? And what do you think of the fact that there is footage in which, your President, George Walker Bush is being told the day before Hurricane Katrina hit New Orelans, that the levees would not be able to sustain the impact of the hurricane? Any thoughts? And how about the fact that so many of the rescue workers at the twin towers on 9/11 are being denied medical health insurance for the respiratory diseases they developed from the contaminated air after the towers fell? Do you think your country is the way it is because it’s full of people like youself who are intelligent and skilled but who, judging from what you write about on your blog, have no interest in or concern about their government’s actions? Oh, yeah, and what time do you go to bed?

In order, my answers are: A shame. A terrible shame. Yes, many. A horrible fucking shame. Yes and no. After midnight.

I’m amused that you’d label me uninterested in my government’s actions, since I have a special mailbox just for all the hate mail I got for being a left-wing, bleeding heart, San Franciscan hippie back when I was posting during the election. Guess you had to be there.

Just so we’re clear about my feelings, and because you asked so nicely, I’ll tell you: I hate our president. Bush is pure evil dressed as a buffoon. He’s done more to screw up our country and the rest of the world than any politician in my lifetime. It will take years to undo his administration’s damage. I can’t believe my idiotic country voted elected him. Twice.

And to those who are thinking, in a whiny pedantic voice, but Gore did win in 2000! Sorry, but he didn’t. If he had, we wouldn’t be in the terrible mess we’re in today, and he wouldn’t be an award-winning filmmaker. Such is life.

Personally, I think the river of blame leads back to one blue dress. Clinton fucked his intern, which fucked the Democrats, which enabled Bush to fuck the world. Go team.

Speaking of, I think politics is a lot like sex. It’s something for consenting adults to do, it’s an important part of life, and if you spend too much time thinking about it, you’re a pervert.

It’s unfair to say that most Americans, including me, do not care about our government’s actions. What we are is numb. How much outrage can you muster? (Well, you, Hannah, clearly can muster up some outrage, boy howdy, but I mean normal people.) Personally, I can’t stay outraged for seven years. At some point, you’ve gotta take a break and save up some outrage for the next guy.

Trust me when I say that most Americans can’t wait until November 2008. Why do you think we’re obsessing over the new candidates so early? We can’t wait for the jerk to go home to Crawford and concentrate on the hearts and minds of cowpies.

But then what? Our choices seem to be between a political dynasty, a conservative in a blue coat (and no tie), and a Ken doll. (Aside: I like Edwards, but the press has sabotaged him for years because he’s too handsome. A shame, because he’s the only candidate who speaks sincerely and with experience about poverty, one of America’s real problems.)

And that’s the thing about politics – it’ll burn you out. Because, as bad as the current guy is, the next guy always seems to be worse. I think the whole system needs to be changed. We need to throw out the outdated bipolar party system, cynical gerrymandering, and political machinery that only reinforces the status quo.

Voting should be easy, and mandatory. I can use my ATM card on every corner in America. Why can’t I vote the same way? Our system was built on protecting state’s rights against the federal government. But in doing so, we’ve lost control of what our country does in the world.

But what do I know, I’m just a crazy San Francisco liberal who is obviously not outraged enough. On behalf of America, I’d like to thank Hannah for being outraged for us.

I wonder what’s going on in her country.

Thanks for the question, Hannah! Who else has one?

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Hi, I’m Derek. I used to make websites. Now I grow flowers and know things. I’m mostly harmless. More.