Monday, February 16, 2004

Advice from an undecided

Few people who are truly undecided in the upcoming presidential race are undecided because they think that both sides are so wonderful that they don't know who to pick. Undecided like myself firmly believe that we will make up our minds the day before the election, depending on how things look then. What will the economy look like, what will the war in Iraq look like, etc.

I hate politics and the major political parties. They really make me sick when I think about the stupidity that goes in to running our government. Neither party is really good.

That said, let me tell you what most of my conversations with these politics fans sounds like. (Most of my friends are Democrat fans, but I have discovered that this is absolutely true for both.)

Me: I am fairly undecided about who I am going to vote for.

Democrat Fan: You should vote for Kerry.

Me: Weren't you campaigning for Clarke last week?

Democrat Fan: Well, yes, but he isn't running, and he supports Kerry, so so do I.

Me: That is a reason to support a candidate?

Democrat Fan: No, the real reason is that Bush is Evil.

Me: Hmmmm. I sort of agree.

Democrat Fan: So you should vote for Kerry.

Me: But I don't really think Kerry or democrats are any better.

Democrat Fan: But Bush got us in to the war in Iraq.

Me: Well, I like the war in Iraq.

Democrat Fan: Yeah, but Bush is going to pull out in June, right before the elections, for political reasons.

Me: So why aren't you voting for Bush?

Democrat Fan: Because Bush messed up the economy.

Me: I don't know much about economics, but I do know that there is no reason to think that the Democrats will do a better job than the republicans.

Democrat Fan: But Bush spent Trillions of more dollars. And Who are we kidding We did great under Clinton.

Me: Clinton got lucky with the thing. Is there some reason to think that will happen again only if Kerry wins?

Democrat Fan: Clinton fixed the economy with his own bare hands.

Me: You have got to be kidding. I am not that stupid.

Democrat Fan: Well, Bush is just screwing everything up.

Me: I know.

Democrat Fan: So why vote for him?

Me: Because I am not convinced that Bush will be any worse. And who said I am voting for him?

Democrat Fan: Well then what is the problem?

And here is where the whole thing trails off. (Mind you, the same conversation can be had between me and a Republican Fan, I just do not have that many republican friends, being an overeducated academic Jew from New York.)

These types of conversations annoy the hell out of me. I do not need people to bullshit with me about how much they hate Bush. I am not his biggest fan. Marriage benefits, stem cell research, all that religious crap, I think they all suck too. I do not need to be told YOUR stupid reasons for hating bush. If they were good reasons I would hate him for those reasons too. But I don't. I don't think that he is any more evil than any other politician ever was, and I really am for any war that saves millions of people from being ruled and killed by a genocidal maniac.

So here is my advice: Stop this negative campaigning. I don't want to hear it. Tell me how and why the country will get better under Bush or Kerry. Tell me, in simple terms, how Kerry will improve the economy. If you have no idea how economics works, say that. Do not BS me with great stories of Clinton or Reagan, and assume I will just be stupid enough to think that because the economy improved with Clinton or Reagan, I will assume that it will improve under Bush or Kerry. Tell me how the Iraqi people will not get screwed by our pullout under your favorite candidate. Tell me how we will not have to put up with scientifically idiotic programs such that we ban everything related to important research because the people are ignorant of what stem cells are. Tell me how your candidate will lower taxes. Tell me how your candidate will preserve social security. Tell me how we will secure the country against terror. Tell me about how your candidate has a good plan for the environment. Tell me how your candidate will not get pushed around by the UN, but not appear like a bully. Tell me what your candidate will actually do for the planet. Tell me how my life will improve. That is all I want from a president.

Oh, and I REALLY don't care who is sleeping with who.

Spare me the diatribes. Spare me the hate. I have enough of my own. I am sufficiently cynical for a small neighborhood. I hate most people already. Tell me good things.

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