Sing a song of
Sing a song of suspense
a pocket full of lies
four and twenty bodies
flown through through the skies.
When the lies were opened
the sellouts did their thing.
Wasn't that a dainty dish,
to put before the king?
Children's nusery rhymes often started out as political jingles. Twenty-Four official fatalities in December means "the surge is working." But if that is so, why is the support for the war in Iraq, according to the Wall Street Journal, below where it was when the Republicans lost Congress?
I'm going to let other people debate the big issues, instead I'd like to talk about what I am seeing.
A friend of mine is ending her quest for a graduate degree, she can't afford it and supporting her child at home.
Another friend of mine just lost his technical job, and is going back to school. He's hoping, in his words, to hide out in academia until all of this is over again.
A third person who I talk with every day is working a second job now in addition to her professional job. She's on the road three hours a day between her two jobs. Gasoline each week for her is more than my food bill.
On the way to work I pass through an area that has all kinds of euphemisms for it, but is really where we warehouse people who are needed to work low end service jobs when there are lots of them to be had, and look away from them when they don't. I see more and more people just standing around. And it isn't the best weather for that.
I stare out the window of the bus on my way to work, or look down at what I am reading, and all around I hear despair and conversations. People making more in three months than I do all year are talking about how they aren't taking any trips, and can't seem to save. Women in smart wool suits have started taking the bus, because parking and gasoline aren't worth it.
I hear a collapsing of hope. And it is something that, as someone who has studied enough social science, I can easily pin to polls, statistics, and surveys, but neither the cold numbers nor that warm bodies telling the stories seem to move a stone hearted elite.
I listen to the Presidential race, and hear only a consumer drive race between two candidates who promise to do less with less on the Democratic side, and the resurgence of John McCain who promises to do for America what his ideas have done for Iraq. I think that means he would get a lot of people my age killed and maimed for no obvious result.
All around I hear and feel and see, a shadowed pseudo-debate. I'm well enough educated to follow the terms, and read fast enough to be "high information," and some how I wish I weren't. I wish this election were as easy for me as the voters who match skin color or gender. At least then I'd be happy with something about my vote.
Some one is going to have to step up and step forward. None of the candidates running now has shown that ability. Not Johnie, not Hillie, not Barrie. Johnie, Hillie and Barrie have all failed to speak to the more pervasive feeling in the country. America is tired of the current brand of politics, and is going to switch to the other brand, but not with any great enthusiasm.
Fine, the switch is inevitable, and we are going to spend the rest of the primary season watching a porn film politics about who gets to be on top. Probably her, possibly him, that other guy is definitely out.
However the real action is going to then have to come from someplace else. I think with a wave of Republicans deciding that if they can't chase pages and pork, and public bathrooms are out, that it isn't any fun in Congress any more, that that place has to start in the House. The House, more than the Senate, has upset people. We expected a wave of activity, and instead got a roar of passivity. We expected a People's House, instead we got a Lobbyist's Sitting Room. We wanted a place where the powerful would be held accountable, and priorities where people counted, and got instead countless insults to our dignity and intelligence.
We wanted out now from Iraq, and are instead hearing in soon to Iran. We wanted peace. We got surrender. We wanted our country to return to its roots, instead it is getting buried.
Cynicism is the bleeding out of hope. We are being bled white.