(by guest blogger Morgan K. Freeberg)
Oh goody. I've got just one more day of people giving me instructions about what I'm supposed to think and what I'm supposed to expect...and me ignoring those instructions, thereby bringing on more instructions which I then ignore. And then one of us is "proven" right and the other is proven wrong, and it's over. That in itself is cause for celebration.
As far as the two campaigns/factions/parties/ideologies, one will become insufferably smug and the other will go nuts.
Well you can take this to the bank: Whichever side loses, will come roaring back in '14 and/or '16 with a stiffness of resolve that it isn't quite showing this year. Because neither one of these two sides is going away. We put on such a great show of "enacting policies" and then sitting in judgment of those policies, figuring out what works and what doesn't. But that is not entirely true, is it. I think most of the people paying attention know what policies bring about what results. Our quibble is with the goals. Yes, your teachers lied to you when they said "Republicans and democrats both want the same things but have different ideas about how to get there." That's the biggest load of crap ever told.
Time and time again, I've had angry, resentful and hurt libs hand me that lecture about "we tried those policies of George W. Bush, including tax cuts for the rich" and it "didn't work" because the "rich got richer." A tax cut, by its very nature, makes it okay to make money. Well the liberals didn't want it to be okay to make money, and they still don't. They wanted, and want, something called "equality"...which means poverty and death. "Equality" means, ultimately, no you can't have it. Every rock on the moon is equally wet.
Prosperity entails inequality. And I think everybody knows it. You turn on your living room lamp, and all that light is disproportionately, unfairly, gathered about the bulb. What a gross injustice that is! But that's how it works. You want equality of lumens, turn the damn thing off and stumble around. You get your equality...and, your zero, your disconnection, your lack of light and lack of accomplishment. Those are your choices. Go or stop.
And that is the choice being made today. It's no different than the jilted boyfriend killer suspect in the murder mystery shows, you know, "If I can't have her then he can't have her either, and I'll make sure nobody else can." That is the proposal involved in an Obama re-election, in democrats maintaining hold of the Senate: If [insert name of despairing, angry hurt voter here] can't have money then nobody else can.
If that statement holds up, and we need to continue struggling against this artificially-imposed headwind for another four years as we have been struggling over the last four -- then, our desire to move it out of the way will only intensify. There's no way Barack Obama can enjoy all the credibility of blaming everything on George W. Bush for eight years, over & above what He has enjoyed while doing this for a solid four.
But, on the other hand, if the "if I can't have it then nobody can" ethos is smacked down today, it will come back with a resurgence in the years to come. The democrats and liberals will become more resentful, more pickled, more nasty. This is the way American politics have been, for generations and generations: One side gets power, and the next cycle the losers come back with an advantage they didn't have before. A lot of times this is inadequate and the losers get smacked down a second consecutive time. But, I maintain, this happens when the losers perceive they have this advantage, that they did not yet posses the last go-'round, and they overplay it. It's an easy mistake to make because in politics, you have to use the advantages you have or else you lose them. But, eventually, things rock back to the point where they were before, and beyond. The pendulum swings. That's the way things are going to go, for the indeterminate future. The democrats had the White House from 1933 to 1969, with only Eisenhower's two terms interrupting the streak; Republicans had it 1861 to 1913, with the exception(s) of Cleveland. Those days are long gone. Words like "Republican" and "democrat" entail much greater commitment to ideology now than they did back then, but paradoxically, the streaks are gone. We're far more polarized. Four to eight years, that's all you get, because the grass is always greener on the other side.
As far as what is going to happen tonight, I have some cautious optimism because I notice people vote for doom and gloom when the contrast is subtle and obscure, and when the contrast is highlighted, obvious and stark, they vote for prosperity because...well, duh. It's a vote on "Is it alright to make some damn money?" Of course the answer is yes. So the question becomes: How well-defined is the contrast between the two cats tied up in the bag, today? Is it easy to see?
Well. We've got a financial cliff coming up, and anyone who can spare a glance toward it can see the abyss that lies beyond, how close we are, how fast we are going. The incumbent party's campaign slogan is -- FORWARD.
The contrast doesn't get any better-defined than that. Now or ever. Barack Obama has spent hundreds of millions of dollars, making it clear to people that the way things have been going, is the way He thinks they should be going. Message received and duly noted President Obama. Hey, let's have an election about it.
Update 11/7/12: Well, then. Forward it is.
Cross-posted at House of Eratosthenes.