I’m registered to vote in my state and it will be the first time I voted in a presidential election since 1988, 24 years ago. I wasn’t really enamored with the Democratic candidate and I remember voting more against George Herbert Walker Bush and not voting for Michael Dukakis. Dukakis could have been the Man from Mars, it didn’t matter to me, it was Reagan’s Vice-President I despised.
I find myself in a similar position this election. I’m not voting for Obama as much as I am voting against Mitt Romney. Regular reader will know that my fervor for Obama is less than lukewarm. Since my last Presidential vote, and in fact, long before, I had long-held a distrust towards the electoral process. I was nominally raised a Democrat by default since it was the Democratic president Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Bill while the Republicans largely opposed it. However, I eventually lost all kinds of love from the Democrats, who seemed unable to run anyone (except for Clinton) but the lamest of stiffs. I also began to see that the two-party system was outdated, corrupt and hopelessly locked in a bicameral conflict that renders the system to be unable to respond to the ills that face this country. I have a suspicion that Washington likes it this way. So I developed my distrust and ambivalence towards the political system into a viewpoint that s voting doesn’t matter.
Now I was out of the country for the last election, so I don’t know if there was the same kind of naked politically fueled racism that I’m seeing now. And what I am seeing now is a rebroadcast of the Old Politics of a new War between the States led by Romney as the Great White Hope and Obama as a foreign Muslim Socialist.
Actually, this internal conflict between the North and South has never abated. Apparently, this rift cannot be mended. Mitt Romney has been championed as the last Great White Hope. If you look at the political map of the US, you’ll see an interesting thing; the southern states align to Romney and the Northern states to Obama. Since 1964, the year the Civil Rights bill was passed, southern white voters have typically voted Republican, especially for President. The republicans, starting with Nixon’s Southern Strategy, have become adept at race-baiting and playing on prejudices of white Americans (To be white in America means that one is an American Prime).
The Republicans are attempting to throw one last Hail Mary pass into the end zone of the Presidency by targeting a shrinking white electorate. More than ever America has become victimized by racial divisions. 91% of likely Romney votes will come from whites. Minorities and women will vote for Obama. With the U.S. population becoming more multiculturally diverse along with the shrinking numbers of white men, the Republicans realize with their internal fragmentation between neocons, tea-baggers, Christian Right and fiscal conservatives, their time is about over. This is the last election where white males will have a chance for a favorable outcome. The fear for white males voting for Romney is that their unearned privilege and influence of their birthright is destined to end.
But none of these things are reasons why I am voting for Obama. Mitt Romney lies too goddamn much. I get that all politicians lie. But Romney has so willingly stretched to superhuman lengths of mendacity, it’s frightening to think about what he would lie about in office. I am not voting for Obama because he’s black. I’m voting against Romney because it seems he can’t open his mouth without lying about who he is, what he really stands for or what he intends to do.
I know he’s fond of saying he has a “plan” to create 12 million jobs. Really, what kind of jobs and how much do they pay and how does he plan to do this? He hasn’t said. He’s probably lying. Romney’s etch-a-sketch style of morphing into another personality when circumstances change is just weird, and it may bite him in the ass yet.
That being said, I remain as skeptical and suspicious of politics and this phony-baloney hand-wringing pandering to the middle-class. It’s a false, pernicious narrative and only serves to keep both the elites and underclass in their place. Both Obama and Romney are guilty of this pandering to the middle class, which is just so much promise-making towards a majority who identifies with the otherwise meaningless term. Making specious promises to the Middle Class will only guarantee the status quo. Only an Equal Money system will level the playing field, and one day we will have a candidate running on that platform.
So until then, I’m voting against Romney, and voting for the lesser of two evils in Obama. Obama left a lot on the table. He could generate enough power with a Republican Congress stopping his every move. Maybe Obama can get more things done in a second term. But in any case, this election will be the last, hopefully, of cynical, race-baiting politics casting disgrace upon our dishonored land.