Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Here Comes Lucy Again

Recently, bloggers Vikki (the post "Still think he's a maverick, ya fucking idiots") and Todd have pointed out the hilarity and pathos of John McCain suddenly starting to pander to the far-right of his party, after supposedly flirting with middle-of-the-road voters of both major parties.

While we voters from the middle on to the left know it's a load of shite, apparently there are dreamers on the far right who believe the shit the Republican Party shovels. Whether it's abortion or flag-burning, they put that football down in front of their voters every election, and of course it gets pulled up as they kick.

Now here comes Lucy, er, I mean, John McCain, telling them that he believes that Roe v. Wade needs to be overturned.

I have bad news for them. The average American wants abortion to remain legal-- and safe-- and will never allow it to happen. And in 1992, even conservative Supreme Court justices like David Souter and Anthony Kennedy voted to keep abortion legal.

I was only 11 on January 22, 1973, when the supreme court made it's decision that states did not have the right to make abortion illegal, citing a woman's right to privacy and due process under the 14th Amendment. I was too young to witness things I've read about and heard about-- policemen investigating women who'd had stillbirths and miscarriages to make sure women hadn't gotten abortions. To make abortions illegal would be a bureaucratic and law enforcement nightmare, even bigger than a flag-burning law or amendment would be. ("Oh, I'm sorry-- your flag had only 49 stars on it. You're free to go") Everybody knows it. Well, almost everybody. Abortion will never be illegal again. And the dirty secret is that the Republicans, for the most part know it. But it won't keep them from putting that football in front of the far-right of their party again and again, because like Charlie Brown, they go for it every time.


vikkitikkitavi said...

Thanks for the link. For me, the abortion issue is to the Republicans like the gay issue is to the Democrats.

The Democrats talk a middle-of-the-road line on gay rights, but there's an unspoken agreement that they will not act to restrict gay rights, and they will defend gay rights against extreme actions. It's a compromise that pretty much sucks for both Democrats and gay people, but there you are.

The Republicans pay lip service to the idea of banning abortion, and they impose just enough restrictions to seem like they're acting without really doing anything extreme enough to inspire the other side to any revolutionary-type action. If they ever really did overturn Roe v. Wade, they'd be so screwed, because they'd lose all the dollars they currently get to fight that fight.

Both parties are engaging in the height of political cynicism, and speaking as a Democrat, I wish we would stop.

JR's Thumbprints said...

When our former Michigan govenor promised to deliver our state to George W. Bush, who ended up losing to McCain, people were accused of becoming Republicans for a day. Hey why not? No one, not even the voters, should be taken for granted.

Anon. Blogger said...

"Leaders", yeah, right.

Erik Donald France said...

Better an artist than a politician. Better to write than to be some pandering asshole stumping for power that's then squandered toward keeping in power for naught. The Dadaists were right to hide out during WWI.

Johnny Yen said...

I'd never thought about it that way, but yes, that's right.

The Dems are still dealing with the big shift from the sixties, seventies and the eighties, when they were dealing with the reality-- that the "Boll Weevil" Democrats-- i.e. Democrats who were conservatives, and sometimes out and out racists were making the move to the Republican party, and the Democratic party itself was grabbing their asses trying to win elections while their electorate shifted-- hoping the number of people enfranchised by the Voting Rights acts, union people (who hadn't defected to Reagan) and number of educated liberals made up for the blue collar urban people who moved to the right, the suburban people who said "I vote for the man and not the party" and then voted for well-funded, well-oiled tools of the corporations who had good advertisements, and in general, the working people and middle class who actually voted against their class interests.

The economic system has created a huge group of voters who live in fear of whatever they have struggled for being taken away by taxes, inflation, job cuts, etc. And the two parties dance around those elephants in the room and use those issues as proxies.

When I visited Europe, it was amazing to talk to people who talked straight talk-- bread and butter issues and civil rights and civil liberties issues, rather than dancing around things. It was wonderful to talk to macho pipefitters who voted for Labor because they were afraid the Conservatives would take away gay rights or abortion. They get it there.

I agree-- it is horrible cynicism. American voters need a field trip to Europe.

There's actually a Political Science term for that-- voters from the other party voting in the primary and helping nominate an unelectable candidate for the opposing party. It's called ballot-raiding.

Michigan's had some interesting Governors. Romney, the uncle of the current Romney, finally, Johnny-Come-Lately, came out against the Vietnam War in the early seventies. When asked why he had gone to Vietnam on a junket and praised the war effort a few years earlier, said he'd been "brain-washed." When he tried for the Republican nomination in '72 or '76, he didn't do well-- people were afraid he was susceptible to brain-washing.

Anon. Blogger-
They get away with what we let them get away with. I'm always amazed at the number of people I know who bitch about politics, but have not so much as registered to vote.

That is a brilliant point! I love the dadaists. They were an unruly, brilliant and ultimately prescient group. And they produced some kickass art.

Camus was not a dadaist (he wouldn't even admit to being an existentialist) but he eschewed ideology, saying something to the effect of ideology being "blind by the graces of its own imbecilic reasoning." This was from a speech he gave in 1948 entitled "The Artist As a Witness of Freedom", which I found in an old City Lights publication some hippy had left behind in my family's Lincoln Park apartment in the mid-sixties. The piece was about why he couldn't side with ideologues, and why he was an artist, instead. I'll send it to you. I'm still trying to find the Malcom X article.

Who was it-- maybe John Adams-- who said "I am a politician so that my son may be a scientist, and that his son may be an artist."

Johnny Yen said...
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Johnny Yen said...
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deadspot said...

I vote Democrat by default, because I'm a realist. I'm going to use my vote to try and elect the party that will do the least amount of damage while they are in office. They call it the lesser of two evils because the alternative is the greater of two evils.

With our single member districts, no third party is ever going to amount to anything other than a distraction. Until they can elect a fucking dog catcher, they have no business running for national offices. Come to me if you can get proportional representation in place, then we'll talk. Unless you're the Greens. You're dead to me, you assholes. I'll never vote for a Green. Ever.

Skylers Dad said...

My dream is for a strong 3rd party to somehow magically appear that is honest, down the middle, and really wants to work for the people.

zzzz, hmm, huh, wake up now... What? where was I? oh yeah, time to go back to reality.

Grant Miller said...

I'm curious how far right one of the Republicans will pander to. Because none of them are making it out of the primaries without some serious Fundamental ass-kissing.