Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The Lineup

Suspect #1 is the perfect woman.
She's a manic pixie dream girl
Artistic, beautiful and kind
You're not her type

Suspect #2 is the perfect woman
She laughs at your jokes as garbage as they are
Meshes into your being
You're not her boyfriend

Suspect #3 is the perfect woman
The love of your life
You'll never find the words to describe this
You're not in her plans

Suspect #4 is the perfect woman
You've known this for far too long
Too comfortable to be intimate
You're not into it anymore

Suspect #5 is the perfect woman
She's the epitome of everything you never wanted
But she actually wants you
You don't understand this

Suspect #6 is the perfect woman
You haven't met yet
She's fiction
You can see her only in your mind

You're the worst witness.
Where should you begin?
They're all guilty.
Hard to pin a criminal with a stolen heart.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Quo Vadimus

And each time I fail, I get my people together, and I say, "Where are we going?" And it starts to get better.
It was an awful year in many regards, but let's take a deep breath before we all go off the deep end. This is not the end of the United States of America. It sure isn't the prettiest of chapters, but those who are honest may acknowledge that United States history is littered with missteps and charismatic idiots. All of those outrageous and impossible campaign promises are not going to be completed, as the Orange One has surrounded himself with insiders and lobbyists who will ensure that as long as the money flows upwards, the status quo should not change. It may seem like I'm not positing a bright side of this election, but rather just acknowledging that most cogs in the system will continue to turn properly.

Let's not mince words: we have failed. I'm from both sides of this election, so feel free to take from that what you will. There are people in this country who are legitimately hurting and disenfranchised. There are a whole lot more who feel like no one cares about their ideals and fears. They are both correct. Politicians do not care about anything, but getting elected and keeping all of that slush money flowing in and their party happy. The only breath of fresh air that the Orange One offered was that look of dejection on his face as he won. When you care more about a party, than you do the people who sheepishly vote for it, you do it a disservice. If there is anything that Americans expect from their politicians, it's disservice.

I prefer to insert the question "Why?" into my failures. Perhaps one voted to get manufacturing jobs back to their state, county, or city. Cruelly, one should note this is a pipe dream in a world of increasing automation and expanding service economy. Sure, globalization has not helped, but there are certain Americans who have profited on sending their jobs abroad and certainly the people who hold the concentrated wealth of the United States benefited as well. Some could blame Hillary Clinton for being a candidate with obvious governing weakness, but no alluring plan and plenty of questions. Certainly, she was no Bernie Sanders, but voter apathy does not equate full on voter madness. And there were those of you who didn't vote, there are no eloquent words to express your failure, so let's try this: get fucked.

The election mistakes the direction of the United States. The country is not headed in a more racist, homophobic, or sexist direction, though it may appear that way given the electoral choices made. While Republicans pretend that the country opposes universal healthcare, LGBTQ equality, and Roe v. Wade, the truth is that more are in favor of the first two than ever, and the country, for multitudes of reasons, has held steady on Roe v. Wade consistently since it's ruling. Despite demanding an unfeasible wall and mass deportations, the Orange One has walked backed on that issue; hopefully, because it is idiotic but more likely that it is not financially or economically possible. The damage that can be done will not be irreparable, because to go too far would be career suicide and none of these men care about the issues more than the pork.

To be honest, there is a deepening divide between the two Americas, urban and rural. As a product of both, I will elaborate further upon that in the coming days. However, that is a product of misunderstanding and stereotyping, not a wholesale difference in values. Sure, people of like minds tend to flock together creating pockets of differences, but everyone dreams of upward mobility, freedom, safety, and happiness. One day we'll agree on that fact, instead of spending so much time denigrating everyone's ability to articulate their values or their complete lack of values from the opposition's perspective. Urban voters are not immoral drug users mooching off of the government's teat. Rural voters are not all bible-toting bumpkins, more willing to shoot a minority than shake their hand. They're all people, they're all terrified, and therefore, they are all prone to making awful decisions.

The title of this post comes from the finale of the TV show "Sports Night". It's not the most apropos of Aaron Sorkin vehicles to mention, "The West Wing" being obvious and "The Newsroom" far more liberal and preachy. Sports Night was a show about failures, but also about people trying to carve out their place in an established system. They rarely succeeded but mostly kept persevering through their extreme devotion to each other and their fight. Sometimes simply, they asked the right question. I'm often admonished by those that I love, both lovers and friends, for telling them to calm down and to breathe. Nevertheless, it may be best to ask that of them once more. There's a good chance that deep breath will be necessary as we head underwater for the foreseeable future. When taking that breath, ask yourself, "Where are we going?" I know the answer will not be something you wish to hear, but it will tell you what we need to fight for.

I can tell you where we are headed. Not exactly a cataclysm, but a dire moment in time. I firmly believe that small government is a reasonable goal, but that the time for small efforts and smaller men has passed. It is time to fight on a local level for love, for women's health, for equality, for justice. It's time on a state level to fight for education and to stop passing laws that alienate people and prevent economic growth, especially in the Midwest which reeled enough that they may have inadvertently fucked an entire country. It's time for our country to end the war on drugs, or at least give it focus the heroin, prescription abuse, and amphetamines that are destroying the communities that voted these idiots in. It's time for us to push back at Russia and ISIS, but reel back our proxy controlling of the world's affairs.

Some have taken to calling it an insurgency, an awkward name to oppose a party of gun-toting xenophobes, but essentially that is what it is. The socialist Bernie Sanders supporters need to find someone young and vibrant, in fact find lots of young vibrant socialists. The liberals need to find new blood, and find the passion that everyone had for Obama and spread it to congressional elections. The Republicans need to find a plan, any kind of plan. The alt-right need to go away. Everyone needs to learn a bit about discourse, courtesy, and cooperation. The Orange One needs to shut his mouth and sit there for four years without blowing us up or undoing any good that his predecessors have achieved.

Maybe I should take a deep breath as well...

Friday, January 6, 2017

Get Yours

"I want to do what's best for humanity."
"I want to do what's best for the American people."
"I want to do what's best for Missouri."
"I want to do what's best for Saint Louis."
"I want to do what's best for my employees/coworkers."
"I want to do what's best for my family."

If you have ever heard these statements, or any variation of them uttered in public, you are being deceived.

"I want to get mine."

This is honesty. When a person says this in public, or any variation of this, they are telling you the honest truth.

The first group of statements are lauded upon and the last is most disagreeable. This is the price of being an honest person. What you say is blunt and sometimes hurtful, yet you are the biggest advocate for everyone else because you are the only one willing to speak bluntly. This is the politician's paradox.

The fluctuations in animosity of ordinary Americans towards politicians is puzzling, as there is a mechanism (albeit, a rigged and mostly irrelevant) to make changes in leadership whenever the electorate wishes. However. that animosity is usually reserved for primary season when ridiculous caricatures of this repressed animosity sometimes capture the imagination. The more puzzling aspect is the resignation of voters in the general elections who just go back to their hovels to support generic candidate A or B.

So what's does each one break down into:

Obviously, a politician making the first generalization about humanity is a candidate running for President. In this instance, humanity's benefit does not include global arms proliferation, bombing indiscriminately in conflict zones, global warming, global economic expansion, curing AIDS or in general giving any fucks about the African continent. Let's be honest as President of the United States, you'll hopefully fuck nothing up here and fuck shit up elsewhere. It's been a trend since Truman.

Maybe you just want to help the American people. This means you are insular and possibly xenophobic. This also probably means you are the President-elect. These are not things included in the phrase American People: women, blacks, Hispanics, Muslims, the entire LGBTQ community, Democrats, and hilariously, the poor white male that support and vote for you. You know what helps the American people most, your own personal gain and tax breaks to corporations and their CEOs.

Sure, you could say you want what's best for Missouri. If you are a Senator, that's not your fucking job. It says it right there on your fucking stationary. United States Senator or United States Representative. The party and State are abbreviations just to show people why you are such a douchebag. If you are Governor or the Missouri House or Senate, this is the correct position. However, you can't say you want to help Missouri if you rape your fellows, take bribes from loan sharks, or generally ignore the concerns of rural Missourians. Neither can you say that if you take money from big agriculture, hate groups, and work to oppress anyone that is different than you. Neither of you that is in the NRA's pocket will be able to help the young black men and police gunned down without reason while you shrug and say you want what's best for us.

Okay, it could be better on a local level. Let's hope that statement is uttered earnestly mayoral candidates and city leaders in industry. So which Saint Louis do you fight for? You probably fought for a $13 million boondoggle in the Loop. You may have put some roadblocks in north St. Louis, thus ending the area's drug problems and poverty immediately and also funneling everyone into your meat grinder that you call opportunity. Perhaps, you are running for mayor while running a corrupt government organization already or a corrupt alderman or alderwoman, which makes you supremely qualified to be mayor.

Now, let's scale the anger back a bit. The next two statements aren't lies. These are often said earnestly and offered freely with love and affection. The first is an impossible dream. Altruism in the face of economic destruction is plain idiocy. Sure, you could believe in these concepts but at the end of the day you are fighting for your success and to put food on your table for your family. That family which you are doing best for doesn't see you because you work too many long hours for not enough cash. They are the same family who doesn't feel safe, mostly because you vote constantly to loosen gun laws. They can't get the proper education they deserve because you know those same guys who keep the gays out of your bathrooms keep the money out of your schools. It's not the sentiment that is incorrect, but rather the means and the method.

Now, say this:
"I want to get mine."

Now, modify it a little.
"I want you to get yours, too."

Apply it to anything. Freedom, honesty, money, music, love, sex, drugs, alcohol, sports, God, Pizza. (especially pizza). Happiness, because there are too many motherfuckers in this world who don't want you to have or spread happiness. Change the world, by flipping the pyramid scheme, and empowering yourself and sharing that with those closest to you.

Then think about the things that it doesn't apply to. Killing, rape, bigotry, emotional cruelty, oppression. Those are all occasions where you got yours, but someone else is getting fucked over. It's not a deep thought to have, but it's a simple concept.

Cut out the bullshit and stop pretending that you are on everyone's side. Be on no one's side, be real and honest, and then start from there. Cut the bullshit, stop listening to it, stop repeating it, and stop living it. More often than not the truth shall set you free. Then you can say: I'm in a good place, how can I make everyone's else lives better.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Love and Hate

Life is hard. There is no eloquence or flowery prose to dress that feeling properly. It may be ironic that one needs to firmly grasp that concept to live a proper and full life as well. It's as essential as coming to grips with the idea that you will one day die and that everything around you does the same. It's not morbid, though rather quintessential to the pursuit of beauty, to acknowledge that life is brutal, cruel, and often times shorter than desired. This was the world before humanity became civilized (in some ways), and we have surely done many things to make life both easier to pass through and harder to live with. Our greatest common enemy is also our closest companion: the hate we hold in our hearts.

Hate.


Hate is a terrible word. Short, brutish, harsh, pointless. At what point did humanity decide that this word was even necessary. Can you imagine how fucking stupid the first person who said that looked? The only thing that can be certain is that the concept of hate is purely a product of human interaction. It requires the object to understand the emotion. One may despise mosquitoes. Mosquitoes do not give a fuck. Therefore, it is a pure human emotion, one that can only exist in the concept of our lives. Animals can be jealous, mean, indifferent, sad, but hating is purely ours.

It's not a young concept. A famous man preached against it in the desert thousands of years ago. He was killed. A man once said, "Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that." He was shot. So maybe the downside of hate isn't the best idea to espouse. Humanity loves to hate. There are millions of people making ludicrous sums of money tearing people down. If any do, there aren't many making money building them up. To what end does hate help us live our lives. You could argue in favor of cynicism and skepticism, but at what point did hatred do anything except cut someone else down.

To avoid the hypocrisy that this surely reeks of, I must acknowledge the seething hate that exists inside of me. There is a long list of things that I hate, most of which would surely paint me as a decent person . It's easy to say I hate people who defend rapists, everyone on Twitter, stupidity, the one-percenters, or war. Less understandable is telling people you hate them without any justification, which I do from time to time. Perhaps belittling someone for their terrible beliefs is not the nicest of things either. I am remarkably well trained at insulting people, which at times crosses the line into darkness. So, this is less a lecture and more of a reminder for myself as well.

Fear.


Fear engenders the same reaction from most, but that comparison is unfair. There is nothing wrong with fear. Fear is a healthy emotion. Fearing death is beautiful if only because that means you love life. I won't shame you for fearing the city I live in, for that fear comes from the unknown. The monster lurking behind fear is hate. When people are spreading fear, they aren't trying to warn you to your benefit, they are searching for hate. Hate is the weapon that feeds on your fears and makes you weak. Weakness in turn allows hate to flourish, and the brutal cycle of humanity continues. One may think that hate makes them strong, protects them from external forces, but in reality, it tears you apart from the inside.

In essence, you no longer fear anything, but you instead hate everything. The vitriol that we spew is not a product of our fear nor our ignorance, but rather that purer bile that poisons our hearts. We all hate because we are all the same, which is perhaps the most ridiculous circular argument against hate. There is no reason to fear a human without hate in their heart; unfortunately, those humans are utopian creations without the flaws that make us beautiful and terrible to behold. A greater man than me said, "the only thing we have to fear, is fear itself." That is catchy. It also is terrible sentiment. Fear losing love, Fear bad health, Fear empty pints. Fear losing your inner child. Fear all of the hate.

Love.


Love is hard. There is no eloquence or flowery prose to dress that feeling properly. Many have tried, some better than others, most better than I. The struggle just to say "I love you", both indicates the importance of said words and the idiocy of humanity. Like all words, they are meaningless with the emotions laden into them. I still struggle to convey my affection properly, leaving too many beautiful things unsaid to the people I love. In turn, by withholding love, I destroy the majority of what I hold dear, be it relationships, friendships, family, and my life. So let me change my tune and tell you something; love is easy.

Living a life without love is hard. People thank God all of their lives for all of the little bullshit, but if you look back on everything beautiful in your life, the invisible hand is love. Without digressing too far, love is the only religion worth saving and the only God worth following. If you do not kneel at love's altar, you are not worth saving. Love brought you into this world, love will follow you out, and love will be the driving factor in your quality of life. I'm not even talking about romantic love, you know the one where you are in love and then you aren't like flipping a light switch. Romance where you sit on the same side of the table because you are insufferable or destroy another person to make yourself happy. Romantic love is hard, loving is not.

Love is the proper response to hate, though that may not seem natural or fair in practice. Pigmentation. Religion. Sexual Orientation. Political Affiliation. Money. All of these things which divide us are irrelevant without hate. To change FDR's statement for the better, say instead, "the only thing we have to hate is hate itself". Hate simplifies the complexity that existence brings. It cheapens your emotions, it lessens your triumphs, and it kills all the beauty around you and inside of you.

Love is an amazing word. Serene, succinct, feminine. It rolls off the tongue gently, embraces you in a hug. It gets thrown around pointlessly and yet still remains cherished. Perhaps, love is the most hallowed of words. It has no boundaries unless we create them ourselves, a wholly idiotic human tendency. Can you imagine how fucking brilliant the first person who said that looked? Can you imagine how much better life would be if we all were loving rather than hateful? Probably not.

Nevertheless, that doesn't stop us from trying it out on an individual basis. Love life, love other people, love passionate romance, love anything and everything. First of all, love yourself. Then approach the world with that love. I can't guarantee that there won't be sadness, pain, or death because these all come in life. I can guarantee that our lives when embraced with loving arms will be richer and more beautiful than the ones we are living right now.


Love is music, too.

Friday, July 22, 2016

The Problem with a Post-Racial World

When people unaffected by racism talk about it, there is a aura of disbelief. This is inevitably followed by denial. These people tend to be white males who don't have any affiliation with anything remotely urban. They'll spout facts at you. Sure, more white people are killed by cops each year. They also make up a majority of the population, so this quite obviously is a loaded statistic. Sure, the world would be better if no one cared about racial equality. This is turn requires racial equality to exist. The final straw may be when they ask African Americans where the outrage is when they kill each other. Now, you've crossed a line into some insane world where you think the police are an equivalent of a street gang; or shooting unarmed civilians is the equivalent of a turf war, a drug deal gone bad, or a jilted spouse.

I'm not writing this to insult everyone by attacking their straw-man arguments. However, let's consider that you are right, and if there wasn't racism, all these problems would go away. This is probably the most fantastic of arguments because many of us just have racism ingrained in our being as a child. So personal racism is there and cannot be destroyed, but I could imagine a world without institutional racism. Racism is the product of people being assholes, racial inequality is the product of us putting the wrong people in charge at every level for perpetuity. For this exercise, if we imagine that there is no institutional racism, sexism, or homophobia, we can also imagine that laws guarding against those things are necessary. So, no more affirmative action, title IX, marriage equality laws, etc., etc.

The first thing one notices about this world is the lack of a story-line. Cop shootings draw attention to the plight of African Americans. Now, they are just poor and disenfranchised, part of the forgotten masses. In a sense, they are now the same as poor white rural Americans, but entrenched in an urban setting that does not allow for any upward movement and has far higher costs of living. While they are no longer targeted by police, they still incur the majority of municipal fines and tax penalties, which one may state shouldn't affect lawful citizens. Those "lawful" citizens have never had to choose between fixing a taillight and feeding their kids. Those "lawful" citizens are in better school districts in better parts of town, and got to go to college because of that. The poor cannot move into these districts, not restricted by skin color but rather by simple economics.

Secondly, the murders and drug problems that plague poor black neighborhoods do not go away. They are not a product of race; they are a problem of socioeconomic destruction. While the race element has gone, the ticky-tack nature of policing drug users continues. Parents still end up in jail, schools still lack funding, and kids are lost into the abyss that the hood becomes. Life is a vicious cycle, especially when in comes to economics. You may not understand how this works, but look at who we are. If you were born into a white middle class family living in the suburbs or a small town, now you have a white middle class family living in a small town. Upward mobility is a lie on an individual basis, and in a post-racial, world no one cares about pulling an entire group up. Sure, you could burnout and drop down a class, or be the .1% that plays sports, cheats their way up the political ladder, or is famous in some other way.

This is the crux of the people who would tell you All Lives Matter, that African Americans are no different outside of skin color. Nevertheless, that racism (both open racism and more insidious government actions) has changed the way our country's wealth is distributed. The ultimate differences between human beings is not their color, sex, orientation, nor religion. It's the amount of money that they can put in their pockets, and the means to have a legal way of obtaining that money. Racism and police violence are the tip of the iceberg. Eliminating those does not put money into poor neighborhoods, nor does it build them good schools, healthy grocery stores, health care options, and those churches that promote community pride, Equality is not people begging for hand outs; equality is begging people to strip off the chains of economic destruction.

That is the problem we face and why Bernie Sanders made such a push with America's youth. It is a post-racial problem for this generation, because rising costs have made even getting back to your parents wealth an impossible climb. So while the older generations worry about their tax brackets and raising rent prices, the youth of America is slowly drowning in their greed. The only difference race makes is that every African American gets caught in the flood, because we have systematically put them in harm's way since the rich, powerful Africans shipped them to rich, powerful white people. I don't want you to imagine being in their place, I want them to imagine being in your place and then have the opportunity to be whomever they choose. Or at least, to be as fucked economically as the rest of us. Like launching a rocket into space, the hardest part is breaking free of the inherent chains pulling us towards the muck, keeping us grounded.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Vote None of the Above

My parents used to buy us cheap B-movies back in the day. (This is not another story about how amazing my parents are.) It got me the classic John Candy two-pack, where he ends up in some sort of magic house type thing. Seriously, they were terrible enough that you can't remember the name. One of those two-packs was fro Richard Pryor, the first movie of which was Carwash. Yes, they made a movie completely around the song "Carwash", and Richard Pryor had a five minute cameo in it. The second, which may be pertinent than this digression, was "Brewster's Millions" a remake of an older movie actually starring Richard Pryor.* The premise of the movie is irrelevant, but essentially he had to spend 30 million in 30 days and end up with zero assets to claim his larger inheritance.

*Before anyone lectures me, I realize it was a book and play before. I am not 131 years old.

At some point, he gets the idea to blow all of his money by running for mayor of New York City, but after realizing he can't have the job and get the inheritance, he withdraws and campaigns for a write-in vote of none of the above.

I'm a firm believer in the impotence of democracy; democracy is a shell for oligarchies, plutocracies, and an occasional dictatorship (looking at you Russia). Yes, I am a cynic, but have you seen this country? If you need a better symbol for impotence than the Democratic Party, you're out of luck. To be fair, the Republicans are still trying to find their way out of the primordial muck that God created on one of those fucking days. Now, you are faced with two real choices, and some peripheral choices. A good analogy is there is a bloated orange rapist invading your home, you have no trouble killing men, you allegedly offed that one guy back in the nineties. You could choose to shoot the rapist or yourself. Or you could fire your guy wildly off into the night hoping that your bullet somehow triggers a chain reaction that causes him to be mauled by cute little puppies while money rains from the skies. I'm sorry that you had to be Hillary Clinton in this exercise, but who else is going to lose a presidential race by self-inflicted means.

See, that is what voting for a third-party is like. It's an exercise of hope in futility, compounded by how hard you actually believe America is a country that currently cares about improving itself. You are the smartest of all the idiots and, on that, I congratulate you. I personally fuck up a ton because I'm relatively smart. So let's acknowledge something right now, Hillary Clinton is going to win this election; not because she is the best choice (though she may be in these slim pickings) but rather by default. You may believe with good reason that she is a criminal, but to rise to the political elite, you must either beat them or scam your way to them. They are all criminals, in one way or another. Donald Trump may be the most entertaining and scary of historical candidates, even more if you realize he could do this again in four years. He is not going to get close to the win, because of demographics, his own failures, and general apathy from the conservative establishment.

So you're a cynic like me, and you're thinking, why do I even vote? Well...



Well, that's just disconcerting. Is he implying that he's gonna shoot all the politicians? That just doesn't seem like effective political maneuvering. Might be more illegal than Hillary's doings and that's pretty illegal.



Don't worry though, he's not winning. Especially, seeing how much he hates farmers.




Crime is caused by career politicians (says a former Speaker of the House? Running for Governor?), not social structures that disenfranchise poor Americans yet give them access to illegally obtained substances and firearms. Note how this starts with a key Republican talking point: they really hate black people that aren't okay with the status quo. Why would she think that way? Here's a picture of Catharine Hanaway's father trying to pour non-dairy creamer in coffee:

*Not actually her father, but probably someone of similar upbringing
How can we know if she is even capable of pouring creamer in coffee, an essential part of being the yes-woman in a large conglomeration of bigots and assholes.

So here's the deal, you need to vote. I don't really care if you are a Republican or Democrat. Sure, the Republicans are easier to make fun of because they are batshit insane these days, but I'm sure there are decent men out there that are more likely part of the establishment, because decent men aren't typically loose-cannon dumbasses. There are decent Republicans and moderate Democrats that I could support. Hell, the Democrat running against these idiots for Governor is a middle of the road guy, who seems to have a platform of, "Hey, that's just common sense and decency; also, I'm pro-business in our state." There are local and state issues that need to be supported (see infrastructure and education bills) and some that need to be squashed (see anything sexist, racist, or homophobic that the teabaggers came up with this time). You don't have to care about an increasingly pointless Presidential election to make a difference, because it's possible that local democracy still carries some weight. Just go ahead and vote, and for President I suggest candidate "None of the Above".

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Myopia and the Far Right

Note: Like most things, I wrote this a while ago, so it may seem dated. Sometimes, it is best to sit on one's anger, instead of blasting it immediately. RIP Rubio For President

What do you stand for?

It's a simple question, that encapsulates the entirety of your personal political platform. It is the question Rick Rubio has no answer for and the reason his entire party is doomed. Its constituents stand for something, whether that is of merit or not, matters little. Say what you will, but Ted Cruz has a specific platform, a specific message. Donald Trump has the "Fuck that guy", "Fuck you", and definitely "Fuck Those People" message on lock. A man who essentially is running a joke campaign is destroying the Republican establishment; perhaps because the runner-up is a scarier option and the third option is a vague establishment charming doofus (much like the President we elected in 2000).

So as a Republican, given three terrible to uninspiring choices, you have to ask what you stand for to pick among them. That doesn't help. They all hate women, or at least Rubio has to get on a stage and parrot that. (Trump loves women in a way, but his family is too easy to joke about) They all love guns, but who doesn't.* They all hate Obamacare and generally any policy that helps poor Americans, because poor Americans don't pay their bills. Except for taxes, the poor and Republicans hate those and especially the things they provide like education and roads. They especially hate immigrants despite two of the candidates having Hispanic surnames and the third is a notorious importer of wives.**

*gun violence victims, their families, honest, intelligent cops, unarmed African Americans

From the other side, it's obvious. One backs Trump or Cruz and watches the whole thing burn to the ground. I don't mean the United States. The only way either of those nimrods get elected is if women suddenly stop voting or stop being far more reasonable than men. Just like nominating Sarah Palin in 2008, the nominations would set the party back even farther by alienating the key demographics that are still rising in this country. Women, gone. Non-white males, gone. Moderate republicans, somewhere else.*

*These people may no longer exist, like the Yetis of American politics. I think they are "independents", or Democrats, the moderate ineffectual types like pretty much every Democrat in Congress

The Broad Brush

The key to Trump's success is his ability to keep the eyes on him by making several broad proposals that are either impossible to implement or hilariously unconstitutional. Deny entry to every Muslim. Check. Build a giant wall between the United States and Mexico. Check. "Make America Great Again"* Check. I Love Troops and using warfare as a means of creating peace. Check. Let's find a stock photo of someone he is appealing to here.

*Of course, these kids aren't of voting age. Wait, they are and they have kids of their own they raised to be just as fucking dumb. (Saddest thing about this photo is they got their wish and essentially segregated the world by insulating themselves from the rest of humanity. Then, blamed the empty cities for being unsafe.)

The term uneducated gets tossed around at the Trump supporters, as if intelligence is the primary qualifier to making good decisions. I'm an uneducated man, and I can tell the difference between being a decent person and just living for yourselves. The above policies are directed at a certain type of voter. This voter has a family, is most likely a good parent by most measures, is probably one of the hard-working poor that Democrats are known for fighting for, and is most likely living in a suburban or rural area. They hunt, which is a perfectly banal activity. They drive American cars to dirty jobs of hard labor. They drink American beers, owned by foreign companies, Most telling, if you talked to them about anything but politics, they would probably seem like the nicest people you ever met,

Myopia

Family is all that matters. One works hard to feed his kids, kids his wife had because that was her duty as prescribed in the scripture. He does not identify as poor, though he unmistakably is, he is a working class man, a sideways shot at his neighbors who can't find jobs or work white collar jobs that pay more. The racism is practical to him. Hispanics are taking working class jobs around him, African Americans do project their legitimate problems as the fault of the general white population He's never met an Asian or Muslim in real life, so they are all just the ones he sees on Fox News. Terrorists. Foreigners.

His father didn't have to deal with this America. His ancestors lived in a past free of African Americans protesting unfair treatment. Women were not fighting to be equals while maintaining the right to be a woman in control of their own bodies. Immigrants did not want to come here to escape warfare or poverty. There were never people who wanted equal opportunities to just love someone. His parents never asked for handouts, and will not receive them in the future because of government entitlement programs.

He lives in a house in a community that has had one murder in the past ten years. There hasn't been a (reported) rape (that went to trial) in that time. Not a single house invasion. Yet he holds his gun as if any of those things is imminent, It's an assault rifle because inaccurate bullet spray has never been known to kill the wrong person. He thinks his job is constantly under threat, despite the fact that no one wants that job. He worries about terrorism as if it's a larger problem than his neighbor cooking meth across the street.* He doesn't worry that forays into an endless quagmire of imperialist and religious violence will kill that nice boy down the street with no money or college prospects.**

*actually happened to me in a small town, not going for a stereotype there
**this too

That is the problem. The far right (and far left, to be honest) are playing short games. They want their situation to be better, but the truth is if you are in your thirties working a dead-end job with a family, that isn't getting better in your lifetime. Once you eliminate yourself and peers from the beneficiaries category, where does that lead us? We need more immigrants. We need more ideas, We need equality. More than anything, we need to fight for education just as hard as we fight for our guns. If you change the game, your children will not have to fight tooth and nail to feed their family. They won't have to be scared to walk the streets of any large city or small town. They won't have to go overseas to show how great America is, people will come like they did at the turn of the last century to marvel at it, cracks and all.

Right now, the Republican candidates want to play Americans for their fears. Why is there no one out there asking you what you are hopeful for rather than what you are afraid of? Why can't we look outside our own existence and first look to fix America's real problems? Or on a greater level, humanity's flaws.