Saturday, April 12, 2008

if you're not bitter, you haven't been paying attention

I know that Hillary Clinton needs to pounce on any little thing she can in order to magnify her increasingly microscopic chances at the Democratic nomination, but I'm sorry: "Bittergate" is just too much for me.

(Actually, I'm pretty sick of gate entirely. Can we just put gate out of its misery? It's had a long life, a prosperous life, a useful life. But I think its spark of originality went out at least twenty years ago. We need to find a new scandal suffix. I nominate "Bush.")

Enough pundits have weighed in by now that there is probably no new ground left to cover, but damn it I'm angry. And when I get angry I either blow off steam by writing a diary or I turn into this hideous giant green thing that tramples everything in its path. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry.

Obama is under attack for saying that some people who have been stomped upon by the economic policies of the last twenty years, especially the last eight, are bitter? He is out of touch and elitist because he said that people are righteously pissed off at the unfulfilled promises coming from Washington and at the neocon Party Time that has made corporations and their CEO's wealthier while making them, the middle and working class, have to struggle even harder to figure out a way to get by? He's being demeaning when he suggests that it is this pent-up anger that causes people to vote not about pocketbook issues they don't believe the politicians will solve anyway but about faith and guns?

Excuse me, Hillary. Look around you: what bloody country are you trying to be President of? Which candidate is suddenly all fluffy light and sweetness, all squadrons of angels and peace and love and happiness? Good God, is this the woman who, scant weeks ago, ridiculed Obama for those very qualities? And now she has the audacity to stand there and pretend that all she sees is happy happy joy joy when she looks into the faces of the working classes? Is she now the hugs and warmth candidate? Has she suddenly morphed into Barney?

This is George Bush's America. It is the Land of Missed Opportunity. It is the Home of the Brave Investors. It is the country in which "morning in America" has been obscured by dark, ugly clouds for far too long. It is a place where that "giant sucking sound" is the sound of our money being siphoned into the wallets and accounts of the very richest among us. It is the nation that Big Oil bought, and it is still paying dividends for them as the oil executives get richer and richer and gas has tripled in price at the pump under the Bush administration. It is the Former Center of Human Rights on Earth, now relegated to watching from the sidelines as others condemn us for violations of basic morality. It is the country that everyone briefly loved and felt sympathy for after 9/11, only to have those emotions replaced within months by loathing and disdain for the unilateral–and don't give me that "coalition of the willing" bull***t–attack on a sovereign nation that had done nothing to us. It is one of the few western countries in which the money people run the health care system. (Maybe it's the only one. Seems like a peculiarly American concept.) It is the land of school attacks, racial hatred, religious hypocrisy, gay bashing, corruption and scandal among our leaders, increasing poverty, a widening gap between the poor and the wealthy, and still-present misogyny. It is a land in which our leaders have conspired to provide tax breaks for the rich to the tune of billions of dollars while seeking to appease the rest of us with $600 and pretending that this is a wonderful opportunity for us all. It is a country spending trillions of dollars and thousands of lives on a war of choice in a far-off land when we have starving children, crumbling infrastructure, fractured health care, hyper-expensive college tuitions, and you name it here at home.

This is not the America we grew up loving.

"Bitter," Hillary? You pander to the right wing, playing a Republican-inspired "all is right with America" card while the country is dissolving around you and you condemn Barack Obama for wondering why some people are bitter? Maybe the better question is: why the hell aren't you bitter, Hillary? Why are you so blind that you don't even see the bitterness?

Oh, yes: maybe it is a bit difficult to find the bitterness when you have to look through eyes worth $109 million. I don't begrudge you your money–God knows I wish I had it–but come on: Barack Obama is elitist? The black guy who grew up in a single-parent home? The one who spent part of his childhood in Indonesia? The one who made his first living on the streets of Chicago? That guy? Not McCain of the Civil War McCains? Not (gulp) Hillary of the unimaginable-to-the-common-man salary?

There is bitterness, all right, Hillary. It's everywhere. It's in an America that yearns to be better than what this President has turned us into. It's in an America that knows it has been wrong and hates being a part of that. It's in an America that desperately wants to solve its financial crises and right its economic boat so that it can return to what it ought to be: elite among nations, powerful, charitable, strong and respected. We can't do these things by pretending we have already done them or that the bitterness and anger don't exist. We can only do them by recognizing our flaws and demanding that our leaders work with us to fix them. Barack Obama has said that he sees them.

Hillary, take your blinders off. There is more to be bitter about than losing an election. And most of the rest of this country knows it.

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it's your hair that i notice first
streaked with morning
it frames your face
you lying there eyes closed
soft breath not quite there
i follow its path as it bends the sheet
and i can touch you there
touch what i feel is you
in the spark of daylight
you'll rise
pull on the wrinkled shirt from last night
say something you think is beautiful
drink some coffee
from behind my paper
and drive away,
leaving a kiss on my lips
and a hole in my heart
where a fire ought to be

Favorite Films

  • The Wizard Of Oz
  • Amelie
  • The Princess Bride
  • Casablanca
  • Annie Hall
  • The Lord of the Rings
  • All That Jazz
  • Citizen Kane
  • Love Actually
  • Moulin Rouge
  • Big Fish
  • When Harry Met Sally
  • Almost Famous
  • Bull Durham
  • Notting Hill
  • Apocalypse Now (Redux)
  • Magnolia

All-Time Favorite TV Shows

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • Gilmore Girls
  • M*A*S*H
  • The West Wing
  • The X-Files
  • The Daily Show
  • Ally McBeal
  • Picket Fences
  • All In The Family
  • Seinfeld
  • The Mary Tyler Moore Show
  • Star Trek
  • Firefly
  • Wonderfalls
  • Northern Exposure
  • Get Smart
  • The Dick Van Dyke Show
  • Twin Peaks
  • The Larry Sanders Show
  • Monk
  • Felicity
  • St. Elsewhere

Current TV Shows I Enjoy (in no particular order)

  • Perception
  • Major Crimes
  • American Horror Story
  • Louie
  • Suits
  • The Newsroom
  • Falling Skies
  • Franklin and Bash
  • Veep
  • Scandal
  • Fairly Legal
  • Girls
  • Don't Trust the B---
  • Justified
  • Portlandia
  • Psych
  • The Middle
  • Person of Interest
  • Happy Endings
  • Hart of Dixie
  • Real Time with Bill Maher
  • Nikita
  • Raising Hope
  • Castle
  • Drop Dead Diva
  • Covert Affairs
  • Elementary
  • Rizzoli and Isles
  • Revolution
  • The Last Resort
  • Alphas
  • SNL
  • Revenge
  • Community
  • Suburgatory
  • New Girl
  • Once Upon a Time
  • Grimm
  • Nashville
  • Downton Abbey
  • Smash
  • Homeland
  • Fringe
  • Glee
  • Haven
  • Community
  • Warehouse 13
  • Modern Family
  • Vampire Diaries
  • The Daily Show
  • How I Met Your Mother
  • The Colbert Report
  • Parks and Recreation
  • Leverage
  • Rachel Maddow Show

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