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Nov 30, 2004

It's taken me four weeks to post

about the election. I told a few people I would do an election post next, before returning to the usual Cute Kids posts. But I was so disheartened I could not think of how to express my distress and fear for our country. Finally enough time has passed that I figure I'll just type whatever comes into my head.

I feel like the dark side of our culture and our history -- selfishness, ignorance, hostility, carelessness, greed -- is rising up to swallow all our greatness. George W. Bush and his crew of rapers and pillagers are destroying our long-term prospects for leading the world as a moral example, or for even taking care of our own citizens. I cried and cried after the election every time I thought about a majority of American voters saying that torture by our fellow citizens, with the approval of our so-called leaders, was no big deal. I feel scared and sick when I think about the huge amount of debt we carry as a country -- and certainly not for any long-term investments that will pay off and help us in the long run, just for no-bid contracts for Administration cronies and the like. I am ashamed and distressed at how we are treating our military (and their families), putting them in impossible situations and demanding more and more sacrifices from those who have already given so much. I am horrified so many people are so close to (or experiencing) bankruptcy and ruin over healthcare crises, unemployment, or the like through no fault of their own, and the people in charge of the government just make things worse, and yet are returned to office. I am afraid of what will happen to our planet as we rush heedlessly ahead with its destruction.

I had such hopes of John Kerry. He seems like a decent, intelligent man who was better qualified than anyone to make tough and moral choices about the Iraq quagmire. Before that, I had such hopes of Howard Dean, who spoke the truth about what we needed to do to return to fiscal health and a sane foreign policy, and who was passionate about the principles that (can) make the Democratic Party great. I feel so discouraged that both of these fine men were rejected in favor of a self-righteous, lying, simplistic, irresponsible, creepy, cruel blowhard.

The only rays of light are: 48% -- could be even worse; and thank god we live in an area where we do not feel so alone and outnumbered as we do in our country.

David said before the election that the Republicans would steal it and we should think about moving to Canada if we could. I wouldn't listen; I thought if we all just volunteered and gave money and voted and pulled together, we would win, and what a glorious relief that would be. Well, now I'm listening. I'm petrified our social safety net will disappear and we're headed for an economic collapse. Maybe we just don't belong here. Maybe the great days of Americans working together are past, and we'll just be bullied by the super-rich and the fundamentalists for decades if we stay. Maybe I don't count at all on the national level. It will take me time to decide for sure how I feel about the balance of fear for and disgust with my country; pride in other great things about the United States and hope our better side will reemerge in time; and most of all, how to weigh my love for the local community we have now against my feeling that for the first time in my life, I am not proud to be an American.

Okay. It's sad and bleak and I don't feel any better for typing it all out, but at least I got it out of the way. Back to the kids for a while.

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