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True, some of that “if you can’t beat ’em, annoy ’em” nastiness was part of my decision to turn Republican. But there’s so much more. Ever since I declared myself a Republican I’ve felt so…free. NOW I understand how those flag-waving Republicans working ninety hours a week with no benefits, no overtime, no nothing (except heavy packages containing the corpses of their children coming C.O.D. from Iraq) are always running around shouting about “Freedom.”
It’s not economic or political freedom they’re talking about, it’s FREEDOM FROM DEMOCRATS. For this they are grateful, and I don’t blame them. Think about it. Did the Republicans ever blame you for losing the presidency in ’92, or again in ’96? Not at all. They lost fair and square (or whatever you call it when the votes are tallied by those electronic Doo-dads) and took their anger out on the cause of their despair: the Republican (posing as a Democrat) Bill Clinton. They fought him tooth and nail from day one. They never let up. Didn’t give him or his deceitful, AIPAC of a wife, Hillary, a minute’s rest.
Yet when the Democrats lost in 2000 – and not even remotely fair and square; they lost even though they won; and worse, it was the Supreme Court, not even the electoral college or Pat Robertson college or any other college that gave him the Presidency–we non-Republicans who chose not to vote Democrat were target number one. Because I chose not to vote Democrat, but Green, I STILL haven’t heard the end of it.
“What did you do to MY country?”
First of all, I thought that “my country” business was the province of the Republicans, but I guess it just shows how it really doesn’t matter in the end. Both the Republicans and the Democrats share two traits: one, they don’t want you to vote for anyone but the person/persons they tell you to vote for; two, they want you to shut the hell up unless you’re saying exactly what they want you to say. But there are some differences. For instance, the Republicans fight their “enemies” which include gays, women, pro-choicers, leftists, free thinkers, college professors, writers, junkies, skinny-dippers, and numerous other ne’er-do-wells, even Democrats. While the Democrats, too damned scared to fight Republicans, just fight Greens.
Why bother asking why Democrats in the House and Senate gave Bush just about anything and everything he ever asked for, including war powers and the USA PATRIOT ACT, son of Bill Clinton’s “Effective Anti-terrorism and death penalty act,” when you can blame Nader and the Greens, who didn’t do anything except get even less votes than they expected to get and, in past years, work to clean up the environment, protect consumers, limit corporate power and increase corporate liability, and other trivial nonsense that means nothing to anyone cause most Corporate jobs are going overseas anyway. Nevertheless, these Democrats can be annoying. Why just the other day I received a missive from one of those crazed liberal whackos, waiting for the second coming of FDR, which read:
“Dear Mr. Engel,
Sorry, no matter how much you protest, it was people like you who helped hand W the White House. I will never forgive Nader for saying over and over how there is no difference between the Dems and the Repubs. In light of the recent sham Medicare Bill that was passed, I beg to differ. Maybe I missed your goal. Perhaps it is to totally destroy the country I love and start over. One thing for sure, the repubs love people like you.
Officious Liberal Democrat”
First of all, this missive puzzled me, for I never protested that I was anything but a radical leftist, much less a chicken-hearted, zombie Democrat. Possibly Officious Liberal Democrat was referring to an article in which I referred to myself (as I was in 2000) as a “stop-light-green: if I can’t vote red I’ll vote green, but never yellow.” But that was in 2000. I’ve moved way, WAY to the left since then. Nevertheless I DID admit to voting for Nader, which got me into a whole bowl of hot water with these liberal types. So I wrote back:
“Dear Officious Liberal Democrat,
“No one, that is, no form of life, is lower than a hypocrite flim-flam artist who suckers people into the same mistake time and again except one thing: the rubes who fall for the hustle themselves. Again and again and again.
“Not only did ‘people like me’ not cost anyone anything because Gore actually WON the election, but Nader was right in that there is no difference between Republicans and Democrats. True, Bush Inc. are an excessive lot, but even the Republicans are starting to see this as “our troops” come home in body bags and the USA PATRIOT ACT, scion of Bill Clinton’s “Effective Anti-Terrorism and Death Penalty Act,” which first began yanking vertebrae out of the Bill of Rights in 1996, started impinging on their cramped little lives.
“How dare Gore take votes from over fifty million people, then sit back and watch as the Supreme Court handed Dubya the White House? Why didn’t he fight? The Presidency was unlawfully taken not only from him, but from all who voted for him, yet he lay down and died. Something Nader would not have done.
“How dare the Democrats let Bush Inc. get away with MURDER since 9/11. Did they once fight en masse against the depredations of the Junta in the White House? How dare they vote to give Bush full war powers? How dare they vote for the USA PATRIOT ACT without even reading the damn thing? How DARE they vote unanimously, along with their Republican cohorts, to condemn the court that ruled that “under god” be stricken from the pledge (and not only that, but pose, en masse, unified at last, on the steps of the Capitol with their hands over their feint hearts screaming the Pledge and UNDER GOD for the cameras?)
“How dare they bow to AIPAC as fervently as their fellow Republicans? How dare they approve the military packages presented to them by the Republicans? How dare they not fight back, never, with the exception of Barbara Lee and Cynthia McKinney (and you know what happened to HER). In fact, how DARE they not have come to her aid while NYC money and Republican chicanery destroyed her?
“How DARE the Democrats never ever fight back with any strength or unity during the past two years of this mess?
“How dare YOU tell me who I can vote for? If you’re telling me that the ONLY choice I have is to vote Democrat (despite Clintonomics, Carter’s war on Nicaragua and HIS training of Bin Laden, not to mention Lyndon “Gulf of Tonkin” Johnson and John “Kill Cubans and Vietnamese” Kennedy and Harry “Hiroshima” Truman), then I’ll vote Republican, if anything just to assert my freedom from ones such as YOU.
“Vote for Clark or Dean or Kucinich or Hillary (Hillary who supported ALL of Bush’s war requests when she should have been stomping up and down, shouting NO! as should have all the Democrats).
“Repubs love people like YOU, for as long as you live, things will never, ever change. Repubs love people like you because you can always be counted on to vote for their spineless foes. Repubs love people like you because, like them, you presume to tell people who to vote for and what to say.
“Also, what country do you love? The bully of the world? The nuclear terror? The halcyon days of Clinton time when Wall Street ran happy on the dot.com balloon economy? The greatest Republican the Democrats — and I’m twice guilty of this – ever voted into office.
“How dare you make blanket statements blaming people who do not share your views for “losing the Presidency” when it is now public knowledge that the election was a sham, the electronic voting process is a sham, and Gore is a sham for taking a dive?
“If “this country” means a place where people tell me who I can and can’t vote for and what I can and can’t say, “no matter how much I protest,” then yes, I’d be glad to take it down, cause it sure ain’t a Democracy. It all began on January, 2001, eh? The Democrats had things under control before the Greens forced the Supreme Court to discount nearly a million votes (some say more) and select the President of their choice, eh?
“Fine. I gave the Presidency to Bush just to destroy America, the world, and tiny disciplinarians like you.
“You, who are still blaming the Greens for trying to do what you are too afraid to do: change the system.
“Well, then, I changed my mind. I’m no longer a leftist trouble-maker. I’m a Republican and proud of it. Bush-Cheney in 2004! There are millions of us. You can’t stop us. The best you can do is “elect” leaders who will bow down before us, again and again and again.
Adam “Proud to be an American” Engel”
Now I may have been a trifle mean and ornery in my reply; in fact, I was downright truculent. But who ever said a debate had to be pretty? The thing is, there was no debate. There’s never a debate when you’re talking to religious freaks, be they Jewish Zionists, Fundamentalist Christians or Fundamentalist Moslems. There is only one truth, one story, there in the black and white text of some two-zillion-year-old book, and THEY have a monopoly on this ancient wisdom. After all my ranting and raving, all my arguments and accusations, Officious Liberal Democrat merely replied:
“You’re wrong and I hope you are very happy with W. W and his minions will get 4 more years to destroy the country I love. Thanks to people like you. You must not be paying attention. There is no way that the Dems and the Repbs are the same.”
That was it. She didn’t respond to a single one of my points. Yet I was “wrong.” Not only that, I was helping “W. and his minions” (where’d she get this, Marvel Comics?) to destroy the country “she” loves. What the hell country is she talking about? The country that bombed and starved Iraq for twelve years – eight of those years under Clinton’s watch – the country with the worst Health Care system in the Western World, the country that – but as the man says, “there I go again.” Trying to argue with a fanatic. As if we have to argue the fine points between Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, or their good-looking predecessor, who started the whole Vietnam mess and left those two dog-faced politicos holding the bag.
It was right then and there that I decided to become a Republican. First of all, just because I’m a Republican, it doesn’t mean I have to vote Republican; I don’t have to vote for anyone at all, and most Republicans (and Democrats) don’t. I don’t have to blame Ralph Nader for anything, I don’t have to whine and pine for some Clintonesque Messiah to come and beat the pants off Dubya yet leave the System intact. I don’t have to do anything, really, except not argue with liberal democrats, because deep in my cunning Republican heart, I know we’re ultimately fighting for the same thing: perpetuation of the “American Way of Life” by any means necessary. And as an added bonus, since it’s assumed by my very Republicanness that I love America and all that, I’m standing on the high ground. It’s MY country now. And all of you liberal Democrat bleeding heart tax-and-spenders (but secret lovers of the System we all share) had better watch what you say about MY country and MY President.
WOW! What a great deal. I immediately wrote to Officious Liberal Democrat to tell her the good news:
“Dear Officious Liberal Democrat,
I am happy with my President. He’s doing a fine job. People like you, who don’t know the facts, yet criticize him anyway, are terrorists.
ADAM ENGEL, Born-again Republican.”
I’ve never been so free, so happy, so untroubled by serious ideas and the gray areas of life. I urge you all to stop the folly of your ways and become born-again Republicans. Just close your yes, click your heels, and repeat after me:
“We CAN all get along. We CAN all get along. We CAN all get along….
ADAM ENGEL loves Apple Pie, War, Empire, Capitalism, Corporatism, Authority, Rich People, and ANYONE, who will tell him how great and strong and wise his leaders are so all those nasty thoughts will disappear forever. God bless us, everyone (except Ralph Nader and those damn Greens). Donations can be forwarded to firstname.lastname@example.org