Okay, I've got to get this off my chest and out of the way so bear with me. If you're one of the foaming-at-the-mouth right-wing shitheads I'm going to be on about, my advice is to stop right here because I'm only going to piss you off.
There's been a video clip from a TV show called "The Newsroom" going around on Facebook (and probably emails if you're still living in the stone age). I've never seen this show but have seen the clip so I'm guessing the episodes have something to with a TV news program. Anyway, if you haven't seen it, the character played by Jeff Daniel's is a Republican newscaster who, on the air, rips the GOP to shreds . For the last 5 years I've been giving this same speech almost word for word until my family and almost everyone I know is sick of it. As this election mercifully nears, it's frightening to me that the outcome is still in doubt.
The first campaign button I ever wore was for Barry Goldwater when I was 12 years old and my family was the Ivory-billed woodpecker of politics - Republicans in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. Our roots in the party go all the way back to the 1880’s when it really was the party of Lincoln and my German great-grandfather joined the GOP as soon as he became a citizen.
So I became a Republican in 1972 and voted for Nixon. Truthfully, if that same election were held tomorrow I'd do the same simply because McGovern was too far left for me. (I did not, however, think he was evil or the tool of Satan.) Then the party had moderates, conservatives and even liberals. There were gays and straights, pro and anti-war and pro and anti-death penalty. It was a big tent, full of ideas and people who knew how to get things done. That’s what made them attractive to me. They weren't rigid ideologues and the racist right wing nut cases were almost all Democrats. I was what used to be called a Rockefeller Republican but the only place you'll find one now is in a history book, again like the Ivory billed woodpecker.
My apostasy started during the Reagan administration when the Conservative movement took permanent root. I've always thought of myself as essentially conservative with a small c but after Bill Clinton's election (thanks to that jug-eared fool Ross Perot), when New Gingrich and his ilk came along, the GOP message became increasingly shrill until it was clear that these people called themselves Conservatives because it sounded better than Bigot. In 2004 I voted for a Democrat for the first time in my life and now cannot, in good conscience, consider voting for any Republican ever again.
If I had ever harbored doubts about the wisdom of my choice, this past Republican primary season would have taken care of it. If anyone who was around when Gerry Ford was in the White House (and haven't forgotten that, at least in part, it was Ronald Reagan's challenging of a sitting President that led to Jimmy Carter) can tell me with a straight face that that crop of fundamental Christians, mental mediocrities, charlatans and out and out crackpots was the best the GOP could offer, well, I'd hate to see what the alternatives would have been. And for good measure, Sarah Palin is the first person ever to run for national office that I have no doubt I'm smarter than.
More than anything else, what upsets me is the Christian Fundamentalism that is at the heart of every current Republican policy. I keep reading about the waning Tea Party and I'll believe it when I see it. But every week brings some new outrage brought on by some obscure, almost always Southern, Republican's opinion as to what constitutes God's will and how his thinking lines up with it. That doesn't seem to show any sign of waning. The worst thing Ronald Reagan ever did was to bring God into politics. And because of the GOP's attachment to the Bible, you don't have to look any farther than what's being taught in Texas schools to figure the United States is on its way to being the world's richest and most ignorant third world country.
Which leads us to November 6. Make no mistake, if the last 4 years have shown me anything, it's that Democrats are just as easily cowed and incompetent as I've always thought they were. But I'm also sure that no President since Abraham Lincoln has seen such complete and total opposition. The debt crisis should have proven, once and for all to anyone that was paying attention, that Republicans were willing to drive the country off a cliff before co-operating in any way with Obama. This is patriotism and American Exceptionalism?
That Mitt Romney, a person who has demonstrated beyond doubt that he will say anything he thinks will get him elected, represents the cream of the GOP crop is a good indication of the party's complete intellectual bankruptcy. There is some evidence that he might not make a bad President but you won't get just him, you'll get his whole party so the question is, "Does the United States really want a de facto theocracy?" I hope not but it looks like at least half the country thinks otherwise. If Romney wins, all I can say is, "You're on your own".
Frankly, I'm not sure why I'm bothering with all this. Most people made up their minds a long time ago and if you haven't there's a good chance you're dumber than a bag of hammers. Anyway this has just made my stomach hurt so maybe I should have just let this guy do the talking in the first place: