Unusually quiet

You may have noticed that I’ve been unusually quiet about politics lately.

Ever since Donald Trump stopped being funny, well, my heart hasn’t been in it.

I will tell you that I miss candidate Barack Obama.  He inspired me, beginning before he was a candidate — when he made his 2004 speech to the 2004 Democratic Convention, I turned to John and said “Can we have him?”  In 2006, John and I spent our 20th wedding anniversary listening to the future president speak.  And in 2008 and 2012, we both worked for Obama’s election and re-election.

Hillary?  Bernie?  Eh.

In February I wrote that I’d decided to vote for Hillary:

Philosophically, I’m really in Bernie’s camp.  I’d love government-sponsored healthcare.  I’d love to make college free.  I would love to erase income inequality.

But I’m a pragmatist.

Even if Bernie could get elected (and I don’t agree with pundits that claim he can’t), well, I spent 10 years watching the sausage mill that is our government.  And I simply don’t think Bernie can do it.

Hillary Clinton has my vote because I think she will be a good president.  Because she’s smart and capable.  Because she knows the system inside, outside and upside and downside.

I didn’t know at the time that I would ever be quoting myself.

But this morning, courtesy of the Daily Kos, I found someone much funnier than I agreed with me.

John Hodgman.

You probably remember Hodgman from the Daily Show — the straight man.  Monday, in advance of the New York Primary,  he came out for Hillary for precisely the reasons I decided to support her.  He is much funnier, though.

I think her ambition is, and has long been, to be the President of the United States, like everyone else in the race, and also to make policy.

I think it’s reasonable to say based on her career that she likes making policy.

Moreover, I think she wants to make the best policy possible in an antagonistic-by-design political process that she has known and wrestled with for decades, and keep that policy in place.

Moreover, I think she wants to make policy that I largely agree with.

And I think she can do it.

Moreover, I think she can beat Trump.

At least I hope so.  New Zealand is so far away.

Hillary Aliens landing

Besides.  She has the aliens on her side.  Photo spotted at Daily Kos.  But my feet were on the ground.  Or actually on the coffee table, if you must know.

 

60 Comments

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60 responses to “Unusually quiet

  1. julie

    Didn’t she already get to be president? Wasn’t she running the country while Bill was in office?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t like Hillary. She seems fake and ill-equipped for office. I’m feeling the Bern, though. I hope he gets it. He may not accomplish what he wants to, but at least he’ll try. That being said, if it’s between her and Drumf, I’ll choose her.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with the fake part — really how can anybody be real under that scrutiny. But not equipped? She’s been training for this for 40 years!

      The thing that bothers me about Bernie is that he is promising things that he can’t make happen. And while all politicians do, his promises are way beyond reach and he knows it. He won’t get his revolution and that’s ok.

      I’m glad you’ll choose HRC over Drumpf, but I hope you will over Cruz or whomever too.

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      • Of course. There is no GOP candidate I would vote for. Maybe, MAYBE, Kasich, but none of the others.

        I just think Hillary’s too far removed from the interests of the middle class to care. She’s flip-flopped on many issues over the years while Bernie’s tune has never changed. And as much as I hate to admit it (because the GOP spent way to much tax money investigating it) the whole email thing worries me. If she can be THAT dumb about emails, what else can she mess up?

        Like I said, I don’t expect Bernie to get in there and do everything he’s promised to do. No president can. It takes an agreement between Congress, Senate, and the president to make stuff happen, and that’s rare these days. However, I like the fact that he’s not saying what he thinks other people want to hear – and I agree with the things he says.

        Just because it seems impossible for him to accomplish the things he’d like to accomplish doesn’t mean we shouldn’t let him try.

        Liked by 1 person

        • The emails bothered me a lot more before I learned that Condi and Colin did it too…

          I’m not going to argue with you. I like what Bernie is preaching. I just know the system too well to think he has a prayer. If he did there would be more than one Democratic Socialist in the US Senate!

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  3. It is like living in a parallel universe…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Well Hillary does have a set of balls and I’m sure she will do a good job. She’s thirsty enough. But bottom line Obama is going to beva tough act to follow.

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  5. I’m excited by the idea of something NEW. No, she’s not progressive enough for a lot of people (though we need to remember that there are A LOT of people out there who are not ready/don’t want Bernie’s progress. Like 49%). And yes, she is a life-long politician who has played the system to get where she is. She’s ambitious and she has her eye on the prize and she has done whatever she needed to do to get to this point. So, in short, she is exactly what we told women of her age to do when she was coming up through the ranks. As more women get elected to office, they will be able to embrace the differences which will make them more progressive and exciting leaders, using their experience to do so. But HRC? She’s had to play with the big boys. It’s what she knows, what she had to do. Yet we vilify her for it. No other politician in my memory has had as much mud, slander, half-truths and bullshit slung at them in the last 20 years and yet she’s still not only standing, she’s winning.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. You pretty much capture how I feel too, Elyse. I’m going to vote for Hillary, but I can’t really say I’m doing so with much enthusiasm. Had Elizabeth Warren run I probably would have felt that great wash of political excitement come over me that I get to feel every four or eight years. But more than anything else, after years of being completely in their corner, I realize now that I have “Clinton fatigue.” All of their near-constant missteps are wearying. Even Chelsea’s cheap broadside of Sanders earlier in the campaign made me cringe. We really need a new generation of leaders to come to the forefront already.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I admit that Hillary makes me uneasy. I think it’s because I don’t feel I know her very well despite all the publicity over the years. I wonder, is she cerebral about history? Does she have that gravitas, that patience, that historical worldview that has served Obama so well this last 8 years? Can she resist the war option when everyone around her is clamoring for it? I think we’ll find out. I will be voting for her because I know the Republicans do not have the right stuff and Bernie wouldn’t be able to get things done.

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    • She wouldn’t be my first choice if I were to pick anybody I thought could do the job. But sadly we don’t get that choice. But actually as I’ve read more about her I have come to have more respect for her and more comfort in voting for her. I agree that Bernie can’t get things done (or there would be more Socialists in the Congress, for one thing!). The fact that he KNOWS he can’t and still makes promises bothers me deeply. But if he is the nominee, he will get my vote. Because the alternative will be Donald Trump. Or anarchy if the GOP doesn’t give him the slot!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. It’s all so maddening. Methinks it could be so much less so with more prominent responsible journalism and voters’ decreased interest in social media and cable news.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Still in shock over it all. We have such extremes out there and people are voting for them. I’ve said it before “wake me up when it’s over.” Personally I’d like to see a woman in the job. Another first. Deep down in my psyche somewhere (and it may not be true) I think that Obama had the racial issue going on and that may have been a part of his lack of success in getting more done. I can’t imagine anyone wanting the job. You get beaten up every day by the press, the people, even those who voted for you. People make issues out of molehills that distract real stuff. Sigh.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, Kate. I agree. It’s not a job I’d want either. Too many haters!

      But people are becoming more extreme about everything. There just doesn’t seem to be a middle ground on anything any more. Compromise and coalition are dirty words. What have we become?

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Although he should have a good run next week, I continue not to worry about The Bloviator.

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  11. Smiling at this post. I remember that exact moment at the 2004 convention when I said, “why doesn’t he run? I’d vote for him today.” After the years of comedy fodder that was the Bush administration, I was elated to have such an elegant, articulate Obama in command. Still proud of him. ☺

    Hillary….meh.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m still proud of Obama — and of my vote and support and yours too! And isn’t it nice how Dubya has just faded off into obscurity (and taken his brother, too)?

      Hillary … meh. Yeah. I pretty much agree. But I think she’ll be a good president, just not an inspiring one. Oh well. It was over 40 years between Kennedy and Obama.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I saw her in a recent town hall where she said that she’ll never have the charisma of Obama or Bill Clinton, but sees herself as more of a “worker bee” who gets things done. I guess we all can relate to that a bit. ☺

        Liked by 1 person

  12. I cannot WAIT for the Trump/Clinton debates. They should have one per week. Pop that popcorn, America.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Can’t comment tonight, (brain is disconnected), but I’m just glad to hear from you. Secondly, uhm, yep. With nearly all the same enthusiasm. Maybe less. I thought maybe this time we could get excited about who we were voting for again. Guess I was wrong. Everyone keeps trying to convince me I was wrong. But I never think it’s wrong to believe in something enough to stand behind it.

    Like April being Sexual Assault Awareness Month. I should have known that already. I should have done something to profess my solidarity. Like even physically attend something in support. Or even a mention somewhere on social media. Maybe I did, and I’ve already forgotten it.

    There are days I’m glad that sometimes my memory fades away before I even realize it was there to begin with. Sometimes, that actually comes in useful. On the days I want to forget that January is just around the corner.

    You always help me think, and smile, and think, and smile. Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ditto the last bit, 99!

      I just said to Van above, I don’t think great presidents come along all that often. But I think Hillary will be a good one. And she isn’t Donald Trump!

      As for the April designation as Sexual assault awareness month, I wasn’t aware of that either (although I am less in tune with that issue). It’s not too late to do something. IN fact, it doesn’t have to be April to do something. Frankly, I think you have already done much by getting up, and by being a role model for forgiveness and for getting on with your life (but NOT “forgetting”. I am filled with admiration for you.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You are always so kind and generous with your words for me. Thank you. The one thing I’ve consistently done throughout the years, in one form or another, is support my local Battered Women’s Shelter. Either by making donations of household goods to their thrift store, or volunteering my time for their fundraisers, or (back in the earlier years), reading to kids who are stuck in the fearful transition of safe houses or shelters. I think there are multiple reasons (some obvious, some not so obvious) why I’ve been drawn to that particular sort of volunteer work. But it can also be incredibly sad. Sort of like hospice work, but different. The kids are always the most difficult part in either equation.

        Switching gears, I remember being so fired up and filled with enthusiasm during the 2008 and 2012 elections, and for once it felt like the country finally started to make sense again. But today I find myself so disillusioned that it’s tempting to just give up, but obviously we can’t do that. So we have to keep trying, and we have to keep at least staying in the conversation. One way or another, November is on the way. And January is soon to follow. Hope you have a good Thursday (and weekend). 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  14. As I described to somebody at work yesterday, I will be voting for Bernie in the primary because he has the views I believe are necessary in our President at this time. Do I agree with every position he has taken? Of course not. But, I prefer his perspective and worldview over the other candidates. Easily. Do I think he could accomplish all he has proposed or promised? Of course not. NO CANDIDATE CAN DO THAT. I’m somewhat disappointed that you will not vote for him based on the idea that he can’t get done what he wants. Hillary also will not be able to accomplish all she has promised. Probably not even most of what she has promised. All candidates are pie in the sky while on the campaign trail.

    Because I live in a comfortably blue state, my vote in November really won’t matter. The Dem, whoever it is, will win my state. So I don’t have to vote for President in November. I’ll vote for all other offices and issues on the ballot, but I will not vote for Hillary. I believe she is no better than a Republican on foreign policy and that is a major problem. And the final straw in my years long dislike of her as a politician is the face that she and her husband “earned” more than $150 million giving speeches to special interests over the past 15 years. As far as I’m concerned, that disqualifies her from the office she seeks to obtain.

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    • I spent 10 years intimately monitoring government — Congress and the Executive Branch. I know the sausage grinder that is government well. You can get nothing done without cooperation — Obama being the show horse of that truth. Bernie will not be able to get done the things he is promising — single payer healthcare and free college in particular — done. And he knows that. So he throws in his “revolution” and that’s not gonna happen either. And really, do you want that? Like John Hodgman, I don’t want a revolution with guns and stuff. And without that these drastic changes are pipedreams.

      As someone who still feels guilty for inadvertently contributing to Ronald Reagan’s election by voting for John Anderson in 1980, I will never not vote for any office. I wish the winning democratic nominee were going to be someone I could love. But I will vote for the nominee.

      A non-vote by a democrat = 2 for Trump.

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      • If there is a credible 3rd party candidate that puts my state in play, I will likely hold my nose, close my eyes, and vote for her. But without a 3rd party candidate, the chance of California going to the Republican is as close as you can get to non-existent. In my case, a non vote by me has no impact.

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      • I don’t know if you ever read Kevin Drum at MotherJones.com but in a piece he posted today he quotes liberally from a NY Times Magazine piece that describes how hawkish Hillary is. I think she would be a disaster as President in the area of foreign policy and would get no more cooperation from Congress on her domestic agenda than Sanders would.

        Liked by 1 person

        • It’s on my reading list.

          Nobody running leaves me warm and fuzzy on foreign relations, actually.

          Liked by 1 person

          • I feel like Obama has been moving in the right direction the last couple of years, after toying with a more militaristic approach. I like the limited engagement in Syria and with ISIS and that he hasn’t put us back in Iraq in a big way. There are a lot of things he’s doing now that the right-wing criticizes him for that I think are finally steps in the right direction of getting us out of some of the international muck we always draw ourselves into. But that will all change in nine months and it’s disappointing. Really disappointing.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Oh, how I’d love a third term!

              Liked by 1 person

              • Me too. He remains the only adult in the room. The greatest tragedy of the last eight years is the response of the Republican Party to him. I don’t expect the opposition party to bow down and kiss the other guy’s feet. But the utter lack of respect, the stonewalling, the complete destruction of the political climate in this country as a result of their inability to deal with an African-American Democrat as President. We may never recover. Just like we may never recover from GWB’s Iraq debacle.

                Liked by 1 person

      • I work in the belly of the beast at the State level, so I completely understand the sausage grinder and the impossibilities.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Yeah, she’s so danged practical. *Yawn*. Bernie is more exciting, but pie in the sky. Now if Trump would get pied in the face, maybe that would bring back some of the fun to this election year.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Elyse, please stop channeling me. It’s a bit creepy.

    Like

Play nice, please.

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