I bounce between hopping on the Sheila soapbox and writing about the impending empty nest. Today’s installment is political and I’m mad at the Democrats and the Republicans.
But I will focus on the Democrats and save the rest for another day. My message: Don’t take this Yellow Dog Democrat for granted. Sure, I have been a party loyalist. The first presidential candidate I ever voted for was George McGovern back in 1972 when I was a student at the University of Alabama. I am unhappy though with party leadership or rather I should say, the lack of leadership.
The more I hear, endlessly it seems these days, the more the pack of candidates seems to blend together into one big “none of the above.” I am tired of polls, pundits and politicians. I am tired of lobbyists who can buy a voice. The few little dollars I can contribute are so small as to be laughable. Who the devil am I kidding?
I used to think my vote counted, but I no longer think that. So to quote my favorite South Park character Cartman, “Screw you guys. I’m going home.”
Longtime dear gentle readers will know, I cannot pull away entirely. Here’s what I am doing, though, and I urge you to check this out friends. I am thinking about joining Unity08.
The Atlantic chronicles the birth of Unity08:
Over dinner, some of the best political minds of the 1970s, Republican and Democratic, reached bipartisan consensus: none could any longer recognize the political parties in which they had once been major players. The cynical focus on divisive “wedge” issues and the ferocious negativity of recent campaigns, which fed in to an inability to govern once elected, dismayed everyone at the table.
If you watch much TV, you have probably seen actor spokesman Sam Waterston on The O’Reilly Factor, Joe Scarborough’s MSNBC Morning Joe or Chris Mathews’ Hardball. I’ve looked at the names of people putting themselves behind this effort. They are a bipartisan group. Here and there you may read about the efforts of Unity08. I just noticed the Washington Times had a piece recently, and a professor who studies political rhetoric said she thought the lack of a candidate and agenda would hurt Unity08. She is quoted as saying,
"It's going to hurt them because there is nothing substantial that well-meaning, critical American voters can hold on to," she said. "They're using Sam Waterston as spokesperson because he's identifiable, but most of us think politics in terms of an ideology, and there should be people, ideas and beliefs that are tied together, that are shared by people. And if discontent with the status quo is your only unifying factor, that's not going to be enough to hold it together, in my opinion."
To which Unity CEO Robert Bingham replied:
"We are not going to have a candidate until June of 2008," he said, but predicted the primaries will leave "a lot of people that are going to be disappointed and disaffected. And so we think that those folks will come our direction, and because they will feel like the system isn't going to produce the solutions that they expected."
From the Web site of Unity08:
Unity08 believes that neither of today’s major parties reflects the aspirations, fears or will of the majority of Americans. Both have polarized and alienated the people. Both are unduly influenced by single-issue groups. Both are excessively dominated by money.
Be warned, Democratic Party muckety-mucks. This Yellow Dog is shopping around. You probably aren’t going to listen to me. You didn’t the last time about John Kerry. And the Hillary Clinton bandwagon seems to be gaining more and more of the Big Mo. Funny, though, none of my fellow Democrats whom I have asked are supporting her. What I hear most often is “I don’t trust her.” And if there are any Hillary supporters who read this, I’d dearly love to hear from you. I’m polite and would welcome your two cents before I take my ball and go home.
photo by Scott Noblitt during a school trip to the Big Apple.