Tuesday, November 02, 2004


You ever have one of those moments, when you're talking to a Bushie and you think, "wait, a minute... I get it, you're just ribbing me. You don't really BELIEVE all that Bushit -- you're just enjoying my reaction."

I've had that moment for the whole 20 years I've know this friend of mine, Charlie. We went high school together in Kingsport (Dobyns-Bennett) during the Reagan years. He was from a Republican family that lived off the golf course and I was from a Democratic family that lived on Watauga Street, which is what you'd call The Historic Section. His family did marketing. Mine: chemicals.

Politics was alive at our house. We always ate dinner together and always talked about the President, the arms race, the Pope, and because of my input -- the environment. I thought it was necessary to let my family know, at every chance, that Eastman was bad for the environment and they ought to do something about it. They must have loved that. I assumed that everyone under 30 hated Reagan, because -- uh -- wasn't it obvious? Dr. Strangelove. Right?


Not Charlie. He thought Reagan was swell. I never understood why -- except that he would say that Reagan is "a great man; strong, and; putting us on the right track." These didn't seem like reasons, they seemed like clich├ęs. So, I figured, it's inherited Republicanism. He don't mean no harm.

Fast-forward to 2004 and inherited or not, not much has changed.

I had that moment talking to Charlie recently. He was flailing an argument for Bush at me and I thought, "he's pulling my leg. Boy, I stepped into that." The argument in question was something absurd like he was saying W did a fine thing sending us to Iraq. Of all the reasons I can imagine someone being pro-Bush, the War in Iraq isn't the one I'd try to argue. It's obvious -- WMDs -- Osama -- 9-11 -- abu Ghraib -- looting -- missing explosives -- Powell. I can imagine someone believing Bush is their man because they want a Christian Nation. That's the only thing he's been successful at -- destroying the Constitution and the separation of church and state. The war has been a failure.

So, I email Charlie and say basically, I'm on to you. You don't really believe that shit. You're stringing me along.

He writes back:

"Sorry I was out most of Friday. Yes I am a GW fan and supporter. I feel
that the way he handled post 9/11 events showed strength and determination.
Americans are hated all over the world because we have more than any other
nation. This is not going to change by electing John Kerry. However simple
GW may seem, I think he does what he says and says what he does. Until we
can get at least the temperature of the middle east settled down I think we
should keep the administration that we have. It has not always been the
right decision to agree with the masses. I hate John Kerry's hair. I think
he lies more than GW. I hate the way that John Kerry loves the sound of his
voice. I hate the fact that John Kerry's wife doesn't think teaching is a
real job. I could go on and on but I will spare you.

"Great spirits have often encountered violent opposition from weak minds."
Albert Einstein"


I'm not sure what is more startling: that he thinks Bush showed strength and determination after 9-11 or that he is using an Einstein quote to attack Kerry supports for having "weak minds."

Charlie and I have carried on this political discussion thruout the campaign and I do admit that his arguments are more convincing now than in high school. But I want to mention one thing I thought was facinating. He is all about social darwinism and hobbes' state of nature, which makes him more of a william f buckley libertarian than bushie-christo-fascist. so he says to me, "I think all government is all bad. if we got rid of all governement we'd finally be okay."

I'm like, "dude, you sell insurance (he really does)." Insurance isn't a thing you can trade easily for a goat or chicken. It's a social contract that exists only because we have a liberal form of government that mitigates the state of nature so we can all enjoy commodious living.

And I gave thanks, because I had not thought of the word "commodious" in ages.


Blogger Nicky said...

God, I enjoyed that.
I don't have time to elaborate, but I really do identify with this entry.

Except for the 'commodious' part. I would never think of that...

Wednesday, November 03, 2004 10:49:00 PM  

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