Posted by: LucidMystery | October 10, 2008

To the Candidates: This Isn’t a Rock Concert

Ok, so this quick bit of political anger venting/ranting. I apologize. I’m just so disgusted with what has become the American campaigning process that I say it infuriates me that either McCain or Obama will become our president. It’s like rewarding a whiny kid.

Now, I remember this scenario from my 14-year-old days when I was obssesed with Nsync: The big celebrity gets on their tour bus, drives around the country, gives a performance for a sold-out crowd, signs some autographs, gets back on the bus and goes to the next city. Along the way, they give some interviews, while smiling at all the cameras and pointing to the merch table piled with t-shirts, buttons, glow sticks, and posters. Oh wait, that’s not Justin Timberlake. That’s our presidential candidates. My bad.

When did politicians become super-stars? McCain was even on SNL! (Obama was supposed to have been, but he pulled out last minute because of Ike). Can you picture real leaders like George Washington or Abraham Lincoln appearing on a comedy sketch show? Yeah yeah, going on SNL makes them real to us, shows us sense of humor and thus makes them more appealing to us consumers. No! That’s ridiculous! They’re all so busy fixing their hair and make up before their next interview that they have forgotten their current jobs in the senate. So apparently, getting what you want is more important than the jobs they promised voters they would do the last time they were involved in elections. But hey, for the last two years of campaigning, the Senate hasn’t seemed to have been suffering at either McCain’s or Obama’s absence, so they must not be that great of assets anyway.

But what really makes me angry? Campaign spending. It’s not like our country is on the brink of a second Great Depression or anything. So who cares if they toss a few dollars here and there to fly their oil-guzzling airplanes or make sure everyone in this or that demographic has a shiny hat with their campaign slogan on it.

And get this, Obama is spending over $90 million on a single night so that he can give a half hour commercial on each of the three major networks–ABC, CBS, and NBC. Ninety freakin million dollars. Our country is in the middle of a major economic crisis, but apparently his record isn’t good enough to speak for itself, so he has to go blow enough money to fund a couple schools for a year on a half hour self-glorifying fest. Woo…hoo. Looks like I’m watching a dvd that night.

But Obama isn’t the only one guilty of stupid spending. McCain’s campaign spent $700,000 Monday night alone in ads…although Obama spent $3.3 million during the same time frame. It’s kind of demeaning to us actually. They both are figuring that if they plaster their faces in enough places, we’ll take in the not-so-subliminal message to vote for them instead of looking at their backgrounds and voting records to base our decisions on. Except, they are unfortunately right. Be honest, have you gotten on Google and looked up senate voting records from either of them? Well, if you’re one of my friends, you might actually have done that. I am proud to say that although not all members of my crew agree on issues, we at least try to be informed voters. (ie, Bri and Bridgie, we don’t agree on a lot politically, and you’re both probably cringing at this post, but you two are both amazing examples of young women who get involved and prove wrong the old folks who whine about our generation’s political apathy!) I would rather you know what you’re doing when you vote and still be voting against my guy than just make your decision based on whichever dude has a better Armani suit.

Both of these guys are just taking for granted the money that all the fundraisers are giving to them. I loved what Craig Ferguson said about Barbara Streisand’s $28,000 a plate deal for Obama: “The fund-raiser brought in a lot of money. Barack Obama must be very happy, because nothing says, “I’m a man of the people,” like a star-studded dinner in the Beverly Hills Hotel…Do you really think it’s a good idea have a $9 million fund-raiser in Beverly Hills the day after the country’s financial system crashes? I don’t know if that is good judgment. That’s like having Mel Gibson come to your bar mitzvah.” (Sorry Mel, I still love Braveheart, but that was funny.)

I think Obama and McCain both just forgot what they’re doing. I’m hoping that one of them will wake up tomorrow and be like “Aw dang it, I forgot. I want history books to remember me, not Rolling Stone!”

To think of the hundreds of soldiers who fought and died in the Revolutionary War. Men and boys, many younger than 16. Mothers and wives who consoled their grief by knowing that tyranny would soon be over and someday someday the colonies would be led by people who might actually care about Americans. Now picture the men debating through the drafting of the Constitution and trying to make sure the people would get all rights they deserved. There was dignity and honor, and perhaps some idealizing. But now, well, now we have a big tour bus with Obama’s big cheesy serious face pensively staring at passing cars. We have arena’s filled with people wearing either donkey or elephant facepaint and carrying arm loads of balloons. And we wonder why we’re losing respect from the rest of the world.

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