Happy New year...The Second Coming of the Messiah.
I retain a healthy skepticism; I voted for the other guy. I have heard a reasonable argument as to why the presidency of Barack Obama should fail.
When Bill Clinton fell sick a few years ago, I found myself in the uncomfortable position of following my Christian conscience and praying for a person I personally detest. I followed my conscience; my family is touched by cancer, murder, various chronic malfunctions, and I have a young one whose life is imperiled by a neuropathic syndrome. Looking at the larger picture, I now have a certain amount of institutional paranoia that some pinheaded racist moron will take a run at Obama. For the sake of the American people, I am once again in a position of following my principles and praying for a man I do not personally care for. I heard a very cogent argument for why his administration should fail if he tilts far left and embraces the socialist leanings of his lunatic fringe worshippers. I’m not sure I’d wish the additional suffering upon others, but we don’t do business of any sort in this country on the basis of hate or political assassination. Inaugurations, whether I voted for the guy or not, never cease to inspire me with the fact that we change power in America through a means that supersedes the coup d’etat. If Obama fails as a president, then that’s on him a person and a politician. If he makes the cut, then America wins. If he fails, then conservatives win. Either way, I get the next four years of priceless political fodder, because I voted, and therefore earn the right to bitch no matter what. If you didn’t vote for someone last November, keep the pie hole zipped and don’t gripe. My puny vote is one of my most precious rights, and yours. If you disagree, take what falls your way without complaint.
I’m still waiting on my $600 tax-relief check from George W. and his much-hated administration. The Possum Den is in imminent danger of seizure for back taxes, even though I have a healthy argument that two-thirds of them don’t apply. My significant other faces bankruptcy and chronic unemployment, and I sweat whether or not I can stretch my disability pension to support us both. My family faces overwhelming health endangerment, and I haven’t even begun to suffer growing old yet. Times are tough, and the likelihood of them getting worse is most prevalent.
I said “Keep the change” when it was a campaign slogan. I stick by that; I don’t believe most campaign rhetoric. The Messiah is not going to cure RSD—Google™ it kids, it’s why I’m stressed beyond getting drunk for a moment’s relief—nor is he going to call Major [JW] Payne, the local tax commissar, and tell him to lay off. I don’t expect a welfare check in the mail. Every time my modest monthly check gets a COLA bump upwards, the Food Stamps and Energy [charity] Assistance I’m already on get cut back because of “an increase in income.” That “increase” is called treading water, hand-to-mouth. I don’t want to live off your tax dollars; I want a job! Unfortunately, my job skills are mostly blue-collar, i.e. requiring a sound body and strong back to fulfill. I’ve taken scut jobs when fiscal requirements demanded it; they weren’t career résumé material, but they put food on the table and paid the mortgage. Nobody wants to hire a cripple, no matter what the EEOC says. Even with demonstrable skills with computers and the ability to stand on demand, and my encyclopedic knowledge of movies, I can’t get a job as a clerk in a video store.
I can still hit a small moving target offhand at 800 meters; anybody want to hire a sharp-shooting sniper? Caution; I have to wear my glasses when using the Remington these days. The backslap from the scope tends to break them and drive shards into my cheek. There is some degree of medical liability involved.
Sarcasm aside, I’m too old for such nonsense. I’d like to be a clerk in a video store, and jabber at people about movies. One of the highest points of the inauguration—for me—was the string quartet with Yo Yo Ma and Yitzhak Pearlman performing “Gifts and Airs”; the Quaker hymn that became Aaron Copeland’s “Appalachian Spring”. I am personally exalted by that melody; a full symphonic segue into the overture makes me cry with joy. Now I hear people are bitching that they instrument-synched their performance and gave it the Milli Vanilli treatment because the instruments wouldn’t stay tuned in cold weather. Hey, I saw The Who doing their “Quadrophenia” tour with a pre-recorded orchestra; Pete Townsend still played guitar and Daltrey still sang. . . I didn’t think it lost anything. I can nit-pick all day long, especially with the new president, but I don’t care if Yo Yo sat on his cello and rotated; the performance, Obama’s speech, and the other attendant ceremonies were moving, inspiring, and respectful to the office.
I saw history being made. For that I’m grateful, and Constant—attentive—Readers know I’ve said for quite a while that we’re overdue for a black president. Obama is not my first choice, but what the hell…just try not to get too many people killed when the terrorists test you like a fresh fish in a prison rec yard.
I’m still hiding and waiting; it’s early days yet. My honeymoon with Obama lasted 48 hours; from the conclusion of his inaugural speech until he signed off on the closing of the Guantanamo Bay [“Gitmo”] detention center. I heard some trash from Moamar Qadaffi the other day, to the extent that President Obama should “negotiate” with Osama Bin-Laden and “try to understand the Muslim point of view.” This from a guy who ended up with bombs in his back yard and innocent family killed because he tried franchising terrorism. Qadaffi, for those of you with short memories, denounced state terrorism and declared disarmament about the time the much-hated George W started trashing Iraq to vindicate his daddy. (I never said “W” was perfect, damn it! I have a lot of deep-seated vengeance-urge for my dad, and he’s still murdered while Bush Sr. is alive and jumping out of airplanes.)
This picnic will not be without ants, and I’m the jury that’s still out on whether this is turning into a full-blown goat-rope. (Not that my opinion makes so much difference.)
For me, the coronation of The Messiah was a totally musical event. I kept flashing back to Don Henley’s “Little Tin God”, and muttering “You don’t have to worship to celebrate an electoral win, you idiots! Nothing will change.”
There it is. Nothing will change. I don’t need to play the politics of “I told ya so!” I need to feed and shelter my loved ones, and you dancers in the streets will be hurling rocks, insults, and firebombs soon enough.
I have yet to fully break my moratorium on all things Obama. When I do, this is going to get ugly.