Posts Tagged 'politics'

Why I need to get the hell out of DC

Politics.

No, I’m not going to leave the post at that, but I could, and wouldn’t be leaving too much more to the imagination.

The first, and perhaps most ironic, problem with my ever-intensifying hatred of politics is that politics occupies the vast majority of my job every day. It’s what we cover: the daily absurdities, the minute changes in polls and moods, the obscure politicians in obscure states whose success in their elections for some reason holds the key to the entire future of American politics, the charges and counter-charges and statements and counter-statements.

Five years ago if anyone had asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, there was a 99% chance I’d say something in politics. It was my trajectory. All of my friends, teachers, relatives knew that I was a government nerd, and my argumentative nature and contrarian style was suited for a life in politics. I studied Government in college, but after enduring the hatred of my peers in 2000 and the years following, I eschewed all but the most basic American Politics classes and concentrated instead on political theory.

In theory, politics is great. It’s human social interaction in its most raw, and simultaneously complex, form. Political theory is in part predictive–assuming a politician will (or should) behave or act a certain way based on their ideology–and in part reactive–ascribing schools of political thought to major events and government decisions in retrospect–and in whole it is a way of viewing and analyzing national and global governance patterns.

But in practice, politics is ugly, and on more occasions than none, painfully boring. At least seeing sausage get made is a little interesting, if gross. In order to do my job (and live with my roommates), I try not to care about liberal antics and conservative complaints. I try to divorce myself from my political beliefs, and not to get annoyed every time I see hypocrisy in action. But unfortunately, DC politics is just one massive game of Pin the Tail on the Hypocrite (so many of whom are Donkeys), an irksome cliche that holds so little relevance in the daily lives of those outside the beltway.

What it comes down to, why I need to leave DC, is simple, and admittedly childish: I’m tired of having my feelings hurt. The liberal bickering, haughty fingerpointing and name calling is hard to let roll of my back. It got so bad–as did the economy and perhaps the Obama agenda–that conservatives who found no support in the Republican party took to the streets. They started the Taxed Enough Already protests, marched on Washington, and ate out of the palm of Glenn Beck’s hand voiced their frustrations wherever they could. Conservatives don’t do that often. Liberals had a dozen “major” protests in DC in 2009, even after their No-More-Bush countdown reached zero on January 20th; conservatives had 2, and they became liberal enemy No. 1. John Kerry calls them “the far right wing, the out-of-state tea bagger crowd.” And the grassroots, on-the-ground marketing plan that got Barack Obama elected over an establishment Democrat (Hillary Clinton) was… neighbors knocking on each other’s doors to spread the good word?

I’m not part of the TEA Party movement. I’m a libertarian; we know that our ideals are frustratingly impossible to enact in the real world, so instead we talk political philosophy in our commiserable smoking circles and write blogs. I truly don’t know enough about their platform (see “hating politics,” above) to know whether they truly reflect my ideals or not. But to dismiss their ideas, passion, and ability to organize as an entity apart from the Republican Party (and you’re lying to yourself if you don’t think the GOP wishes it could rein in those TEA party folks and/or benefit from their fiery tenacity) as invalid is, unfortunately, liberal modus operandi: forcible tolerance of all ideas and ways of living, unless they run contrary to liberal ideas and ways of living.

The bulk of liberals might have reasonable ideals and good reasons for holding them. Many of the ones who are my friends certainly do. But the face liberals put forward is all too often that of the arrogant asshole, or snarky comedian from whom most liberals, despite their ministrations to the contrary, actually get their news.

For every Glenn Beck-tard who follows the TV host’s word as gospel there is a Jon Stewart worshiper who claims his jokes as their own “savvy” political observations. There are idiots on both sides, but forgive the Right if they don’t take every opportunity to publicly lampoon their liberal counterparts, use crass sexual jokes to describe opposing grassroots movements, or assume that their position is the default mood of the American people, and every view to the contrary is moot. Liberals actively hate me (even though traditionally I’m in the demographic they love), and I’m tired of it.

The grand scale of What DC Does matters. I would never suggest it didn’t. And perhaps if I got out of the bubble, I would appreciate it more. But I’d have to get out of the bubble to find out.

What an ass.

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November 2017
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