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04 June 2008 @ 09:26 am
The Inevitable Political Post  
In light of the end of the primary season and because so many other people are doing it, too, I give you my take on the Democratic Party/Primary Issues.

Disclaimer: I am not leaving the Democratic Party to become an Independent and I will never vote for John McCain.

First, I think two bodies share the blame for the Florida/Michigan debacle and neither of those are Obama. The Republican legislatures of those two states changed the dates of their state primaries knowing full well it was against the DNC's rules. Is this surprising at all? No. Florida has been in this Sadministration's pocket since the 2000 election; why would that change now? Michigan...I don't know why they did it. Maybe because they could. So 60% of the blame rests with those Republican legislatures. The other 40% of the blame lies with the upper echelon of the DNC for not recognizing the ploy to divide the Democratic Party! It's not rocket science! It's actually a very simple tactic and this Sadministration is known for using them in true Orwellian fashion! But Obama did not "steal" votes. He had no power to make any decisions about how those votes would be awarded.

Do I think that the DNC has some serious organizational issues? Yes. Is it enough to make me consider voting for John McCain in this election? Absolutely not.

First, just so you know, I'm not above voting for a Republican for local or lesser offices if I feel that he/she is right for the job. It would take a hell of a lot for me to consider voting Republican for President, though, and I'm not sure that there's a Republican that could live up to that. It certainly isn't John McCain, who was vilified by his own party when he ran against Bush in 2004 and then continued to support them by voting how they wanted him to after he returned to his elected office. The GOP pretty much accused him of being a traitor and a pansy for his military record while Shrub was stateside in the reserves, AWOL, and a coke-head during the same war. I don't understand how John McCain could allow those accusations to stand unchallenged and I don't know how he could continue to vote with the Sadministration while also saying he disagreed with them. I don't trust McCain to stand for his own policies. He will just continue to be a mouthpiece for the Bush War Machine and I won't put that in office. Too many people's actual lives are at stake here for me (or anyone) to be voting Republican just to show disappointment with the DNC. There are other ways to do that, ways that won't cost soldiers and civilians their lives, ways that won't keep us in an illegal and impossible to win war.

Now, do I trust Obama? Not fully. But I don't fully trust Hillary, either. I haven't fully trusted a politician, ever. I probably never will. No politician anywhere is ever going to be the "perfect" candidate.

During the primary here in NC, I did not actually decide who I was voting for in the Presidential slot until after I had filled out the rest of the ballot. And I have seriously been thinking about this for over two years!

I like Hillary's health care plan. I like Obama's refusal to take oil money to fund his campaign. I dislike both of their stands on marriage equality. I like both of their commitments to end this life-wasting, money-wasting "war". I like her political savvy and experience. I like his vision for change. I like her focus on the economy and the middle and working class. I like his focus on the environment and the need for alternative energy. I loathe the fact that both of them fell victim to the idea that smear politics against your philosophical colleagues is appropriate. Smear politics--in general--needs to go away.

I would like Obama to pick Hillary for his VP. I think the two of them together will make a better President than either of them would make individually.

What do I think should be worrying us more than whether it is Hillary or Barack up to represent the DNC in November? What are the changes we can make to actually improve the entire political process?

First, restructuring the DNC and the whole convoluted delegate ridiculousness.

Second, term limits for every office. Political office should be a civic duty, not a career. What we have now is an old boys' club, with little change and few new ideas. The whole political machine is bloated and slow. It needs to be made agile with responsible term limits that automatically turn out incumbents who clog up the machine.

Third, we need more than a two-party system. Republican and Democrat are just not cutting it anymore. We're too big, with too many ideas and too many viewpoints. We need parties that are leaner and more focused so they can decide on a platform and move it forward. All this infighting and division stops us from actually getting anything done.

Fourth, three words: Line. Item. Veto. (Which would immediately take care of bill riders, which I loathe.)


Finally, responsible campaign finance reform. It is not fair that only the wealthy get to run for higher public office. We constantly complain that these politicians don't have any idea how the "common man" lives and yet we can fix that problem with some real finance reform.

As for the new Democratic divide...

To the people who believe that Obama means sweeping change, I have news for you. It's not just Hillary that is "business as usual", it's hundreds of other politicians, too. Yes, Obama has a shot at changing some things, but he cannot do it alone. He doesn't have the political bank account from which to draw for really big changes. He needs experienced politicians with him, ones that are willing to stick their necks out for him on some things and ones that are willing to rein him in on others.

To the people who believe that Hillary was our savior and Obama stole this nomination, I have news for you. She was fighting an uphill battle before she even declared her candidacy. The GOP has been preparing to fight Hillary ever becoming POTUS since her husband's first term. They have been writing tomes on the subject! And there are some in the Democratic Party who are damned tired of our country being run by just two families: Bush and Clinton. It smacks a little of monarchies of old, with established land-owning families trading the crown amongst them.

I hope this will be my only post on this topic, but I won't promise that. If you feel the need to respond, please at least keep it civil. I have.

Thanks for reading, if you did.

tulliolustulliolus on June 5th, 2008 10:21 am (UTC)
Interesting tidbit you're probably already aware of: there are a lot of conservatives (or conservative bloggers, anyway), who feel the same way you do about McCain, but are going to end up voting for him anyway, because they're that set against seeing either Clinton or Obama in the White House.
seftiri: Democratsseftiri on June 5th, 2008 11:49 am (UTC)
Yes. That's the problem when you only allow one candidate from each party to continue on. It's sad and very dysfunctional.

Also, I have not forgotten about your other comment, probably weeks ago now... I will go back and give you a full answer, dear. I promise. I was going to get caught up on email this weekend since it is the first weekend I don't have to be anywhere.
tulliolus: feettulliolus on June 5th, 2008 12:31 pm (UTC)
It's a sad comment on both American and British society that the only way to unite a workable majority of the populace either here or there is in opposition to particular candidates or ideologies.

As to that Big Damn Comment of mine, now that I know you haven't overlooked it, feel free to take all the time you need. RL is pesky, I know it well. Heck, I should be busy myself, not gabbin' about the human condition ;)
newbie_2unewbie_2u on June 5th, 2008 03:19 pm (UTC)
Well said! I've always felt that any President is only as good as their Cabinet. I am most interested in seeing who those folks may be...
seftiri: Democratsseftiri on June 7th, 2008 09:04 pm (UTC)
So am I! I miss Madeline Albright...
Shut up and smile: Political // Mass pwns youmorningafter2 on June 6th, 2008 06:22 pm (UTC)
I wish I could offer some words of either agreement or disagreement, but I can't. I still cannot even figure out where I stand right now, and mostly whenever I see a political post I just feel sad, because this is not a good time for the Democratic party, no matter who you support, or do not support as the case may be.

All I can really think of to say about this whole spectacle is that, as someone who will vote for the first time in November, and who has always been passionate about and as active in politics as life will allow, I find the state of the DNC, the anger of the voters, and the general sense of disunity to be one of the most disheartening things I have ever experienced.

I don't know what I'm going to do coming November, and it is not entirely unlikely that I won't know until I actually go to vote. But I will vote. Period.

At this moment however, I am mourning my inability to actually be interested in politics anymore.

I would like to say this, however: I think taking Hillary Clinton on as Vice-President is the only way Obama can actually win in the national election. I say this not to find fault with Obama, but because of the split amongst voters in the Democratic Party. I don't know if I actually want this to happen. I've been very partial to the idea of Bill Richardson being VP. I think he would be fantastic. But there is wisdom in taking Hillary as a running mate.

Edited at 2008-06-06 06:37 pm (UTC)
seftiri: Democratsseftiri on June 7th, 2008 09:11 pm (UTC)
Back when everyone was still running, I took a test an found out that the candidate that most shared my political philosophy was Chris Dodd. I kinda wish he'd be VP. But I am not opposed to Hillary as VP. 22% of responders to a recent CNN poll said they will not vote at all since she's not the nominee. 17% of others said they'd vote for McCain instead of Obama since she is not our nominee. We need those votes back in order to get a Dem in the White House.