Every morning is a new dawn. If you have ever watched a sunrise, be it in the countryside of most red states, or the urban skylines of most blue states, you know how majestic and awe inspiring a new dawn can be. When I appreciate a new sunrise, it feels like surely this sunrise I am experiencing now is significant. Surely there has never been one like this! Surely it means something. There is a reason. A purpose. This is an omen of good tidings to my future. Surely. Surely this day will stand out from all the rest, cuz I’m starting it with such a glorious experience as this sunrise! However, again I must reiterate: Every. Morning. Is. A new dawn. In fact, there has never been a morning on this Earth without some sort of dawn. Perhaps it was really cloudy now and then. Maybe nobody saw the new dawn, but it was there anyway. Even more pointedly, not a single hour in the history of this planet has ever gone by, in which a new dawn failed to happen somewhere. Even before clocks were invented. Even before the first homo sapien sapien was late to the first board meeting, there were new dawns. They happen a lot. Even if it’s happening out in the Pacific Ocean and there’s not a human to experience it.
It’s a new dawn. It’s a new day. Billions of dollars were spent to bring us this new dawn in which Barack Obama has been re-elected. BILLIONS of dollars were wasted. Countless man hours. Years of news cycles educating us on who all those republican candidates were and why we’re supposed to give a shit about any of them. Romney wears magic underwear and thinks half the country is leeching on the other half. Bachmann’s a crazy woman. Perry really shoulda never left Texas. What the hell was Herman Cain’s problem? Why do I even know who these people are? And HOW did Romney get chosen as the best runt of that litter? Really? THAT is the best the republican party could do?
Ooh. Ahh. To paraphrase The Bard, it is all sound and fury signifying nothing. Much ado about nothing. Nothing. Democrats control the White House. Republicans control the House of Representatives. Democrats control the Senate. Judicial branch is more conservative than perhaps it has ever been. We are, for all intents and purposes, back to square one. Pretty much exactly where we were four years ago. What the fuck was all that about? NOTHING.
As I made clear my intent long before Election Day, I did not vote. Why? Many reasons (which I have voiced before, either here or elsewhere) but chiefly among them, so I could do what I am doing now, which is to gloat and scoff and poke fun at all you voters who did vote. Now, I know many of you like to spin that. “If you don’t vote, you have no right to complain.” However, you guys are the ones at fault! You contributed to the political machine. On the other hand, I have washed my hands of the entire fiasco. I am not responsible for perpetuating this illusion that there is nothing wrong, and trust me dear reader, there is something desperately wrong with this picture. What is that something? It’s NOTHING. Literally.
Let me take you back to the night of Tuesday November 6th. I spent that night entertained by the costly circus. I looked at the electoral map of this great country of ours and saw it torn and divided. Essentially from a state by state, county by county cross section, if you lived in a rural area, odds are your county was going for Romney. If you lived in a more urban setting, the odds were better that you were living in a state of people voting for Obama. There were some exceptions but for the most part that’s how it broke down. The county I live in, Dallas County in Texas, went for Obama. However, there’s a lot of rural counties in this big state, and tho Austin, San Antonio and even El Paso went blue (and Houston almost did), most of the rest of the state did the same thing it has done since after Carter beat Ford in 1976. So Texas thanklessly gave Mitt Romney a boost. That’s 38 electoral votes right there. A cursory examination of the map appeared to give the win to Romney. From Utah to the Carolinas, he had the most land mass, and the heartland of the country in his pocket. However, the electoral college does not work on land mass.
The electoral college also doesn’t work by popular vote alone. That is by questionably intelligent design. The pop vote was much closer than the state by state electoral tally. Given the fact that Obama went into this re-election with the lowest of popularity numbers of any incumbent seeking re-election. He promised change four years ago but delivered four years of Politics As Usual on the beltway. Frankly, I’m mildly surprised you voters let him win.
But lets look at his opposition. Mitt Romney is a sleazy corporate shill who has made money by buying companies cheap, putting people out of work and then selling companies at a profit. he is a stupid con man who has fallen for one of the biggest long cons in modern times: the Mormon Church.
But hey, it could be worse. He was the best of the litter of runts the republicans had to offer up in the primaries. Herman Cain or Michelle Bachmann would ahve made for a more interesting, entertaining election, but they would not have been a better choice than Mitt.
So I went to bed that night thinking Obama had won it and I’ll tell you why. If you couldn’t add, Romney was winning. You just look at the electoral map and more of the country was red. Surely that’s enough. However if you could add, and understand how the electoral college works, Barack Obama was winning. Ohio, Virginia, and Florida were still up in the air. The west coast hadn’t closed all their polling places yet but Texas was already decided for Romney. That was a no brainer. As was Utah. However, Washington state went for Obama earlier than expected, and most of New England and the midwest was already blue. To even stay in the game, Mitt Romney needed all three of the battleground states: Ohio, Virginia and Florida.
Both Massachusetts and Wisconsin (the home states of Mitt and Paul respectively) had abandoned Romney and Ryan. A good rule of thumb for future candidates: if the guy who you choose to be your vice presidential running mate doesn’t politely excuse himself from the senate seat he had before you tapped him on the shoulder, it means your own VP doesn’t think you can win, and wants something to fall back on cuz he doesn’t believe in you. Food for thought.
All those resources used on Pennsylvania in the eleventh hour proved futile. Florida was up in the air and looked to be just as unorganized and worthless as it had been in every previous election in recent memory. I gave Romney the benefit of the doubt and assumed he’d win Florida, cuz it was gonna take them days to sort out that mess. You’d think by now Florida would have gotten their shit together but that’s just incompetence on multiple fronts, that state. Virginia was too close to call, but seemed at the time to leand more pink than cyan. It’s the home of Pat Robertson. I put that one in the republican column too, although later I’d find that while both Robertson and Romney are god fearing christian men, Romney being Mormon may have been too much for protestant evangelicals to bear.
Ohio was still teasing both sides of the proverbial gridiron, but Obama saved the auto workers and a lot of those guys live near Toledo. My grandfather was a Ford man, and my dad spent some years working in a steel mill near the Great Lakes. In my heart of hearts, I just couldn’t see Michigan or Ohio ever voting for a slime ball like Romney. So I went to bed assuming Ohio would go blue, leaving Mitt ouit in the cold. I awoke ten minutes before I had set my alarm clock. Inside my head was playing John Lennon as i stirred awake, as if it were accompanying the end credits of a cinematic dream I had already forgotten about.
“Imagine there’s no countries.
It isn’t hard to do.
Nothing to kill or die for.
And no religion too.”
Still laying there in bed with a bitter sweet smile on my face, it dawned on me that I was waking into a world in which absolutely nothing significant changed. Congress would still be divided. We were moving forward into four more years of gridlock. Obama offers more of the same but Romney offered more of the past. he was really little more than Bush 3.0, and that is how history will remember him. So you voters, roughly half of you, have voted into office the lesser of two evils, and you should be proud of yourselves. Your two party system was spent billions of dollars on these campaigns just to keep us exactly where we were four years ago.
Congratulations. You got what you paid for. Merry Christmas.