Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Hillary Shenanigans

Having been out of the country for two weeks and then on vacation, I’m just now getting hooked back into the presidential race.

With Obama seeming to be back on track after the Rev. Wright flap, it will be interesting to see whether Hillary lying about her trip to Bosnia will hurt her in the polls. The last thing Hillary needs is to remind everyone that we can’t trust Clintons with the truth anymore than we can trust Bushes.

I know this goes against the very essence of who the Clintons are, but I wish they would recognize reality and throw in the towel. She can’t win mathematically, except to steal superdelegates, against the obvious will of Democratic Party voters.

One tidbit I learned on vacation: My brother-in-law recently moved from the Cincinnati area, and heard that a lot of his conservative family and friends had voted for Hillary in the primary, to try to make the race drag on. Their county is overwhelmingly Republican, and they ran out of Democractic party ballots because so many Republicans were voting Democratic. Hillary won overwhelming in that county. The mainstream media missed the boat on that one.

If she does somehow manage to steal the nomination, I will be in a major quandary. I can’t vote for McCain, since I don’t want to go to war with Iran, but at this point I don’t think I could vote for Hillary, either, given all the race-baiting her camp has done. I may have to vote for Nader. Yuck.


gyakusetsu said...

You could also not vote, or vote for a libertarian.

Dan S said...

Not voting would take away my authority to complain, which I like to do too much...

gyakusetsu said...

I'm not sure that's true.

Our electoral system doesn't include a "none of the above" option and write-in votes aren't counted unless the person is declared and has gone through all the right bureaucratic maneuvers.

A representative democracy cannot really work unless people can vote for someone that represents their views.

I think you still have authority to complain, if there are no viable candidates.

Our presidents get well below a majority of the population's vote (around 20% of the population, in 2004, for example), even when many people are simply voting for the "lesser of two evils," yet they take it as a mandate from God and the masses to guide the nation and the world according to their designs.

The "Two Kingdoms Theology" still has a place for some of us today, I believe.

This is especially true for those of us who are principled pacifists (or even non-aggressionists), and who believe that all government action and funding is predicated by the threat of violence.

Dan S said...

I suppose that's another way I'm a minor mennonite - I feel invested and involved in secular culture as much as the church. The two kingdom approach seems to me more apt for a time when farming communities really could cut themselves off from the wider culture and go their own way. It's much harder to do in the modern world, where everything is connected and influenced by everything else, and social policy can have a very real effect on the livlihood of the least among us.

Anyway, I've been a fan of real representational democracy (like they have in Europe) for a long time. I would love to be able to vote for a party that actually represents my views. But, we don't get there by not voting, which just emboldens the two parties in charge to ignore anyone outside it.

I've often wondered whether a third party devoted solely to changing the winner-take-all system to a representational system would gain any traction.

brownie said...

Coalition governments in "Representional" systems are even more inept (!), and frozen into inaction (by the inablity of the multi-player system to come to some meaningful consensus in almost every task except the most critical governmental crisis) than our system is. How could you possibly call this an improvement? The stated purpose of our gov't is to promote the general welfare and provide for the common defense; neither of which will be done any more effectively by creating a coalition form of govt.

Dan S said...

The stated purpose of our gov't is to promote the general welfare and provide for the common defense; neither of which will be done any more effectively by creating a coalition form of govt.

Really? It seems like the governments of Europe and Cananda are able to provide for the general welfare of its citizens much better than the US does. Perhaps its cultural more than system of government, but there's no question Europe and Canada provide a stronger safety net and are more socially conscious that we are.

Robert Sievers said...

Well, on a change of topic. Tomorrow I am going to change my voting registration over to Democrat. That way, if Florida does have a do-over, I can cast my vote and be heard.

Dan S said...

Oh, Bob, don't tell you are going to vote for Hillary. That would lack integrity.

It's beneath you.

It's so, so... Republican...

brownie said...

Yeah, like Italy. They've had...what...67 different governments since 1945? That's about one a year. We have a hard time getting things done with 4 or 8 year administrations because of all the in-fighting in a TWO party system. Imagine the problems with a eight, ten, or twelve party system.

Or how about the general welfare of Spain? Where the last I heard, unemployment was at 20%.

Or Sweden, where the income tax rate is above 80%.

Or Britain, where the tax rates on royalties (for those who are really innovative and come up with great ideas) is a whopping 90%. And Big Brother really is coming alive just as Orwell said. It's estimated that the average Briton is caught on survellience cameras (on average [!]) four times a day. A day!

How about a lovely stroll in downtown Sarajevo a few years back? Dodging snipers and living in a run down sports, wait, I think we have had that here...never mind. Let's switch that to Kosovo, where death squads roamed the neighborhoods searching for Muslims to slaughter for no other reason than their religion. Wonderful.

There is plenty of residual anti-Semitism and racism in those countries too. I saw it in Spain. Look at the riots in Paris. The bombings in London and Madrid. Skinheads in Germany. I'm here to say that Europe is no panacea.

When I look at America, I see plenty wrong. But when I look at Europe, I don't see Camelot. Just another place with plenty of its own problems.