I am not a great follower of Political News; be it my own country or such News from abroad. It tends to be pretty much same old same old.
But of course, being on the internet and on a blogging platform one is bound to stumble across news.
Right now the airwaves are full of the Syrian war, the refugee crisis and the ensuing ‘’Who’s side are you on?’’ discussions that are currently filling megabytes of storage as the sides draw battle lines and hammer out their reasons for supporting the camp in which they have decided to pitch their tent.
Being the most diverse nation on the planet, and certainly the wealthiest, the biggest noise comes from those living in the USA.
Somewhat inevitably this manifests into a fight between Democrats and Republicans.
I have never really understood USA politics; to me, although there is a lot of noise made about it, the things American politicians rant on about … and like most politicians, they do rant … it all seems fairly trite.
And in most instances, one politician seems the same as another.
Oh, they talk up a big game but if and when they are elected to office they all seem pretty much of a muchness.
Let’s be honest, what politician doesn’t want to get re -elected and will apparently do whatever it takes to ensure this happens?
So, when they all seem much the same, why are there such vitriolic wars – including the blogosphere over Democrats and Republicans?
Take Kennedy. He was a Democrat and to me, on the face of it and not being an historian, seemed all right.
He prevented the Cuban Missile Crisis, boosted the Apollo Program and was hell bent on calling it quits in Vietnam.
And what happened? He was assassinated and Vice President Lyndon Johnson took over. To my mind, Johnson seemed a pretty good President on the Home Front, but immediately he was sworn in he escalated the war in Vietnam.
Yet according to several articles and comments he was not a good President. Seems people got upset over the war – as anyone should.
Nixon, a Republican, helped end the Vietnam War, yet left the Whitehouse over the Watergate Scandal and will be forever remembered for this. I don’t know anything else about him and I’ll bet most non-Americans don’t either!
Reagan, unlike Clint and Arnie, managed to put his acting skills to good use after he was elected, and is generally regarded as a good President.
He was a Republican. He initially escalated the Cold War then, when Gorbachev took office sued for a more peaceful approach.
Yet he was still involved with a lot of wars, especially in Latin America. In Africa, where the USA seems to have little interest – no oil for them – up to a million people died in the Angola conflict and Reagan’s policy toward the Apartheid regime of South Africa was little more than a hand wave.
And of course George W … WMD, right? ‘Nuff said.
All about war. And it goes on and on …
Yet, to my mind the big issues in American politics are the ones blown out of proportion and centre on this illusion of Freedom and more to the point, restrictions that might or might not be imposed if one is stupid enough to elect a Democrat or a Republican. Independents don’t count, they are merely oddball flakes in the American Political Arena (Circus?).
This Freedom that supposedly magnifies the American Way of Life, which apparently never includes the genocide of a rather large number of Native Americans, oddly enough, does so often focus on Gridiron Football, Baseball, Burgers, Fried Chicken, Walmart, Coca Cola, and of course the car. Or to be more direct … oil.
And with this firmly fixed in the forefront of one’s mind it is easier to see which way the wind blows in American politics.
It seems Overseas Policy is all about preserving this American Dream and as long as American Troops are out there …. somewhere, getting slaughtered for no good reason defending this Freedom, those back at home seem quite content. As Bob Dylan sang: ‘’It ain’t me babe”.
Of course there will be the eventual howls of protest when many of said troops start arriving on American soil in Body Bags, and the statisticians begin licking their pencils and preparing their Internet Posts for dissection, but hell, y’all, that’s part of the price you have to pay to preserve this Freedom – which naturally, extends to the much of the human race; sometimes whether they ask for it or not. And it helps if you have lots of oil in your back garden … sorry, back yard and are quite amenable to buying American weapons and burgers and fried chicken.
Yes, as you can see, I do have rather a cynical view of American Politics and especially the level of analysis proffered by the likes of Bill O’Reilly-types across the media spectrum.
To be fair, I am cynical about all politics, but the American version seems to strive for this highly altruistic model that, weirdly enough, includes Godliness, Football, the Hamburger, Guns, Blacks, the Abortion Issue, Israelis and Palestinians, and all things Gay, while pursuing a policy of Kicking the Shit Out Of Anyone Who We Don’t Like – Including Each Other.
I think the Democrats and the Republicans should all vote for the Opposing Team’s candidate, and I bet thousands will still die in a war somewhere, and you won’t even notice the difference.
God Bless Charlie Brown.