As I read other blogs, I am sometimes a little embarrassed that I rarely tackle the big issues of the day in politics and world events. It's not that I don't pay attention or consider myself informed. It's that you have your opinion and I have mine, and I doubt I will change yours, nor do I care to. I once lived next to a legitimate blowhard (by which I mean I'm not referring to the great bloggers, 2Blowhards), and he was insufferable. My wife and I always approached our own house with apprehension in fear that he would be outside when we came home, thus guaranteeing at least a half hour of unfettered thoughts and opinions sprayed at us on our 7-yard trip to the front door. He was self-employed and was home a lot.
More to the point, I have yet to find a blog that doesn't tote the party line. Not one. They are either liberal or conservative. These days, after the Clinton administration, there's a lot of bullshit and horseshit bandied about over who's telling the TRVTH or not. Pretty much no one does. Or if they do, the liars scream louder and get their own syndicated talk show.
Here are some truths as I see them:
There is no proof of WMD in Iraq so far (though it is probably still too early to rule out the possibility that we might find them), and chances are that we were told that possible little fib to get support from other nations and some of our own more skeptical people - which an administration insider, Paul Wolfowitz, has admitted. If the Bush administration had told the truth, that the true reasons for war with Iraq were messier and more vague, and it involved subtleties regarding cultural differences between Westerners and Middle Easterners, even some hawks would've balked. However, sometimes things are messy as hell, and I think this administration most likely did the right thing in taking the war where they did, when they did it. A sad truth about Middle Eastern culture is that not fighting back is seen as weakness and an open invitation for more violence. Going in and kicking some butts and taking some names is about the only reasonable response we could have had. Turning to Iran and Syria right afterwards and saying, "you want a piece of THIS?!?!" was prudent, too. I commend the Bush administration for seeing that and taking proper action when it wasn't easy to justify. Yet, you will not catch liberal blogs saying that.
The far right trying to undo the Clinton presidency and hound him out of office with lawsuits was outright wrong. It was a monumental waste of taxpayer's money, a flouting of the legal process, and it has opened the gates to some pretty dirty fighting that will undermine our government for years to come. Clinton was exonerated on EVERYTHING the wingnuts tried to throw at him, because guess what: he didn't do anything illegal. They discovered the open secret that he was a womanizer, and happed across the fact that an intern gave him a blowjob because they were illegally spying on that intern, a private citizen, just to get such dirt. Then they set a perjury trap. This goes beyond dirty politics and right into surreal full-blown corruption and scandal. And they still blame Clinton for all their ills. I've even read comments on two separate blogs blaming Clinton for the shutdown of the govt. that one Christmas. Google up accurate reports of that episode (meaning no wingnut or loony liberal publications), and it's blatantly obvious that the "Republican Revolution" nutballs led by Newt Gingrich caused the shutdown. Revisionism is amazing sometimes. Still, you won't catch a single conservative admitting what a horrendous, dangerous episode in our history that was.
You won't see a loony lefty admit that the infusion of their wacked, pomo ideas - gender feminism (e.g. "males suck"), identity politics ("white people suck"), gay activism ("breeders suck"), Marxist theory and influences ("democracy and capitalism both suck") - into the NEA, "educational" TV, and other avenues of our educational system is what's causing the "school choice/vouchers" and home schooling debacles. Most people with kids want their kids to learn the three R's and not that gay vegan "minorities" with good self-esteem fomenting for their benevolent dictatorship of the proletariat are better people than the rest of us. In other words, the vast majority of people in America are people who believe in God, don't dwell on race or gender as a huge issue, don't want the complex world of adult sexuality as a required topic in school (it's a personal/family issue), and who believe our form of government and our nation are about the best thing that we've ever seen now or in history (and that every freakin' Marxist nation was or is corrupt, evil mess).
You won't get a wingnut to admit that what the Republicans are doing now domestically is essentially what evil Potter did in the non-George Bailey alternate universe in It's a Wonderful Life. Welcome to Pottersville. (The whiplash irony here is that most of these same Republicans love that movie and see themselves as George Bailey.)
So, no blogger out there that I'm aware of is willing to see that each side has a point. Each side has been wrong at times, and each has been correct, too. Because of the rancorous partisanship of the age (it is worse now that it has been in decades), I don't imagine anyone who did stick to the honest, real truth - giving credit where credit is due, and pointing out the bad guys, whichever side they're on - I doubt that blog/person would be read because, "if you're not for us, you're against us," y'know. Each side would write them off as an idiot rather than think for themselves and say, "Gosh, s/he might have a point there".
Most people want: a reasonable amount of regulation on big and small business so we are safe and have choices, but certainly don't want the free market crushed because it is the engine of wealth and opportunity; a strong military so our nation is protected; a good highway and energy infrastructure; safe water; a reasonable social safety net so those who need it can get education and medical care; a school system that is free of politics (and teaches history with all its warts) and is free from pressure from religious groups; and they would like fries with that.
Do you know of any blogs out there that will thrown down for each side, when that side is correct? If you do, let me know.
TLD: The title of this post comes from a Phish song of the same name, as it was playing in my head the entire time I was writing since the implicit nature of this kind of post is "lose/lose". This lyric is the most germane: "When I tried to step aside, I moved to where they'd hoped I'd be."
See, this is what you get when I try to do politics. So in the future I imagine you'll be glad when I avoid them entirely. Thanks for listening.