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September 23, 2008

Comments

Tonya

Oh, Karen, this is a marvelous post—ESSAY! You've hit on absolutely everything I've been feeling/sensing/believing. I'll be linking to this!

Nancy

Superb--everything I've wanted to say, only better. Thank you.

Margaret

Absolutely RIGHT ON target, Karen. I have been feeling sick with nerves about this election. I thought maybe it was just me.

B.O.B.(bob)

Karen, Unfortunately what you're missing is that the average American (I should probably say average person, nationality probably doesn't have anything to do with it) is a gullible moron. People continue to swallow the lies because it's what they want to hear. "all is well", "remain calm", "we'll take care of it", etc. Until the democrats (and the few upstanding republicans) somehow figure out how to get through to these people nothing will change. I actually think it will take some republicans coming out and saying look we've been lying to you. I used to think McCain was that type of guy and hoped it might happen when he ran against Bush 8 years ago but clearly all he cares about now is saying whatever it takes to get elected.

Naomi

Sing on, sister! It appalls me to think it, but I fear the fundies have a tighter hold on this country than we separation-of-church-and-state types realize. I truly don't understand it.

Nick

I was off line at home for two weeks, server change. I worked in the garden, cleaned closets listened to old cd's, wallpapered, Avoided the news on tv. When I came back online it was as if everyone was frantically doing triple time.
Don't be sucked in. People doing a power grab always want you to be paralyzed (to make powerless or ineffective) with fear or confusion. Live to fight another day.
Take a deep breath.Spend some time off the computer. Paint a bedroom .Be romantic. Do some gardening. Take a nap.

Leslie

Thanks, Karen, for writing this post. Your words express exactly how I feel about the upcoming election! I will be sending some of my politically-confused friends to your blog so that they can be better educated.

Hope all is well with you and your family.

Katy

Are you planning on doing any campaigning, maybe one of the door to door efforts in NH? I don't feel there's much to do here in MA but I share your thoughts and fears and want to do something about it!

DJay

Hi Karen -
Excellent post. Seriously, you should whip it into an op-ed piece and send it to a couple of newspapers, see if anyone bites. I personally have started avoiding any campaign news because I know it can't POSSIBLY change my mind and it can only make me more anxious about the outcome. I took it hard, and personally, when the living brain dead won last time and I can't bring myself to contemplate the possibility of it happening again.

Brian

I'm voting Karen for VP

Kirsty

You know, it scares me too - and I haven't even got the right to vote in the US. This is depressing because US policy hugely affects the world (well, that's how it seems here in the UK).

I second Brian; I have so much more faith in YOU than in SP.

Wendy

Can't underestimate the magnitude of the racist vote. They are everywhere, people who say, "Well, who knows how American Obama even is?" Or mutter about Jeremiah Wright, but not about Hagee or Parsley. Or those who don't say any of those things, but will not vote for a black man once they enter the sanctuary of the polling station. It scares the cr*p out of me.

Elena

I know women who are voting for McCain/Palin because they are pro-life, or against tax increases, or because they fall for all of the terrorist innuendo and jingoistic crap (can I say that?) coming out of the McCain campaign. I don't get it at all. This is not the time to be voting on these kinds of issues. And I'll remind you again that I am a lifelong Republican!

Mori

I hate to be the voice of dissent here, but this is really over the top. I’m with Nick – spend some time offline. The world is bigger than this election, although the Internet doesn’t seem to be aware of that.

I am an undecided voter and I do not consider myself a Palin supporter by any stretch of the imagination, but your remark about her family is equally as mean-spirited as you accuse her of being. I have nothing but respect for the way that Obama has consistently refused to hit below the belt regarding Palin’s family and it saddens me that so many of his supporters have not imitated his compassion and restraint. If you have a problem with Palin’s political stance, attack her on the issues. Remarks about her daughter’s pregnancy, her passport-holding status, and the number of trips she has or hasn’t made to New York are irrelevant and totally unnecessary.

The assertion that the roughly 40-45% of the country who supports McCain (do you include the 18% of the country that is as yet undecided, according to the recent AP poll?) is made up of racists, religious extremists, or the ridiculously wealthy is not only insulting but unrealistic. I understand that the vast majority of your political views are supported by the Democratic platform, but many of us are not so fortunate. As a voter who is economically liberal and socially conservative, I usually have to content myself with voting for the person I consider to be the lesser evil. If I choose McCain, will that suddenly make me a racist or a fundamentalist? Do you have anyone in your life whose political views differ from yours? Do you feel comfortable demonizing them, as you have above?

I have always enjoyed reading your blog, but I am surprised at this post – more the tone than the content. We cannot afford to allow ourselves to be mired in the divisive negativity of the politicians and the pundits, regardless of which side of the political aisle we happen to be sitting on.

Karen

Mori, first of all, I don't spend all my time online, but whether or not I follow the news, it's going on without me anyhow. I'm desperately worried for the future of the country -- and the world. I owe it to myself and to my children to stay informed and to make a difference if I can. I hope to teach them that they have an obligation to vote, and to vote as an informed citizen.

I don't think my remark about Bristol's pregnancy was at all mean-spirited. My point was that not a single study has ever shown abstinence-only sex education programs to be effective in preventing teen pregnancy. Sarah Palin supports these programs, and I'm just pointing out for the bazillionth time that they don't work. I feel more sorry for Bristol than you can imagine. If I were in Palin's shoes, the last thing I would want to do would be to thrust my family into the international spotlight. As I posted a few weeks ago, I would have graciously declined McCain's invitation and suggested that perhaps I would consider such a role in the future, when I wasn't home with a special-needs child, a pregnant child, and 3 other children who might need a stable home environment now more than ever.

Palin's lack of worldliness is a big problem in my mind. As I said in my post, I want a Vice President (and potential President) to be well-versed in the goings-on of the world. Palin's work in Alaska does not translate to knowledge about the world. I don't think she has enough education and on-the-job experience to be able to tackle the tough issues at hand today. We'll be much better off with someone who doesn't have to learn by doing every time something new comes along.

Re your final point, I apologize, because clearly I didn't word that section of my post carefully enough. What I meant was this: I can certainly understand why racists, fundamentalists, and big-wig CEOs would vote for McCain/Palin, but I can't understand why anyone else would. That's the big puzzle for me: Who ARE all these Americans who respond to pollsters by saying that they support McCain/Palin? I can't imagine what the appeal is.

I am sorry you felt that I was "demonizing" anyone; I certainly didn't intend to. I am always eager to debate openly about the issues. Indeed, I don't think there's enough talk about issues coming from Sarah Palin, because I don't think she knows a damn thing about the issues. That's just the impression I'm getting from her resume and from the precious few interviews she's given.

Thanks for stopping by.

Elena

FWIW, I think that Palin's lack of exposure to the world outside of North America is a very relevant issue. I also think that she herself has used her daughter's pregnancy for political reasons, so I don't see your comments as being out of line at all. I have become more liberal as I've gotten older. As a parent of a teen girl, I am especially reluctant to cast stones at someone whose daughter ends up in such a difficult situation. What I find curious, though, is that the people I've seen who are most judgmental about Bristol Palin are the teens I know! My kids and the high school students I teach have made some very strong statements against Palin because of that. I find that really surprising. I would have thought they'd be the most understanding.

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