Monday, February 4, 2008

Super Weekend

One way Massachusetts can recover from the jaw-dropping Super Bowl outcome is to indulge in our 3rd favorite sport (it goes by voting the hell out of the primary tomorrow.

How blue is Massachusetts? So blue it's almost Green.

2.8 million voters in the 2004 primary. 30% of the total population, which includes out of town students, and about 1M under the age of 18. [these statistics are hurried and not very well researched. But not skewed]

On the other hand, we elect Republican governors year-over-year, because Massachusetts Republicans in any other state are ...moderates.

Remember Bill Weld and his late-term abortion bill? That took his party by surprise, and the next thing you know he's Ambassador of Nothing. When you are judging a book by its party cover, you might want to check if he is a Deadhead. Or if he is wearing jeans in his State House portrait.

So where am I going with this?
Not toward an endorsement of Mitt Romney, you can be sure of that.

I mentioned in this space recently that I sometimes use my primary vote to have a say in the Republican nomination. So I can confess that I have voted for John McCain before, and thought I would again until he said we might be in Iraq for the next hundred years. I am not just falling for ther Mother Jones spin on this, because I do recognize that he did not say we would be at war for 100 years. His example, in fact, was Korea where we have been at ceasefire for 60 years.

And is that good? is that bad? Beats the heck out of me -- we've been kneedeep in a quagmire somewhere my whole life. What I reacted to was his lack of a need to have a different plan. He actually shrugged (which, not to put too fine a point on it, is not easy for the man) and said "fine by me."

It was a little Bushy.

Romney. Please. Stop it. I'm from Utah! I'm from Belmont! I'm a native son of Michigan! I'm whatever you want me to be. I'm Zelig. And I am damned good-looking.

Mr Governor, the role of John Kerry has already been filled.

Who's left on this ticket? Ron Paul? If you typed his website out in courier font on erasable bond, you could hand it to the guy who rants outside the library, and no one would be any the wiser. There may be some good stuff in here, but I couldn't read it. I have said the same thing about the SCUM Manifesto. Honestly though, 12 hours before the polls open is no time for me to be picking my spoiler GOP candidate just so I can feel like I played both sides.

I'm truly a crazy Kucinich democrat, which used to be called Rooseveltian socialism when it was socially acceptable.

So what do we got over here? The Illinois-bred history-making Senator with the activist background and the wonky healthcare plan. And the other one.

I finally listened to the "And then there were 2" debate rebroadcast the other night, and remain in the middle of the road between them.

What it starts to feel like to me is the difference between choosing Leadership or Management. Dodie described Sen. Clinton as a Beaurocrat, and true enough. You may see someone who goes back as far back as Watergate as an entrenched insider or someone who has learned how to work the system. Is she the boss in meetings so much the staff doesn't know who she is?

Sen. Obama is charismatic, no doubt about that. He preaches a good message -- who doesn't want to live in the world he describes? The children hold hands and sing a song of peace and harmony. Can he make that happen? Is he the coach who tells you before every game that it's a building year, and after the trouncing says you're so much better than you used to be?

Certainly, you want the head of state to have both Leadership and Management, but when I ask myself which I would sacrifice for the other, I am still not sure.

One thing I do know is that the United States of America is not a business, and it is not a sports team. It is a society. An organism that requires one...out of many. Structure...and freedom. Rules...and exceptions. And what I hope is that these 2 Senators get themselves partnered up for this thing. Put Edwards on HEW, Slick Willie on HUD, bring back Robert Reich, and confuse everyone by making McCain the Sec'y for Veterans Affairs.

I can not end this post with my endorsement. I don't know what it is.

So let me leave you with this. The photo at the top is Lucy Burns, who went to jail for asking to vote. In Kenya today, about 900 people are dead and 300,000 people have been displaced by widespread violence following a presidential election gone horribly awry, Florida 2000 style.

It may snow tomorrow morning. But if voting feels like something that is just too much trouble for you, please spend all the free time you have gained by reflecting on everything else in your life that comes so easily for you and which much of the world can never even dream of.


  1. I have spent much of today listening to elephants tromping directly over my head. Okay - the floor above me is actually one of the secure storage sites for voting machines in NYC - and yes, people, they are being moved to their locations for the big event tomorrow. I found out I am allowed 2 hours off to vote, and may take advantage of the newly discovered rule.

    Does MA have a similar rule?

  2. Come on, Mitt Romney's hair has more charisma than John Kerry.

  3. The line at my local polling station was out-the-door! It was interesting--several precinct (sp?) all come together in the local high school gym. My precinct was the most popular and we were all dressed for work. The other two precincts must be a different demographic...there was no wait for them. What does that say? Are only employed, educated, office workers and mother's with strollers voting? I for one think each vote is important and each vote counts. I'd like to see my less affluent neighbors at the polls...for their vote is just as important as mine.

    And let us bow our heads and thank God the Mitt-the-Twit is finally out of the race. Today's paper did have a good political cartoon that said..."A Woman", "An African American" and a "Veteran who won't allow torture"...What an interesting race.


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