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The Glad Game
November 25, 2004: OK. I confess. My guy for president lost. But no way am I moving to Canada. Though I did think Ralph should have demanded a recount. He was only kazillion votes short. Who knows how many of those votes were stolen by Bush/Kerry? After all, didn't the donkey do its darndest to keep Ralph off the ticket? Remember Ohio? And the New York Times reported that Ralph was picking up disaffected elephants in Idaho. What happened to all those pachyderms? Lots of states might have turned another color if the big two hadn't mangled Ralph's chads.

But let's not hash over dry bird. Besides, Kramden wasn't intensely my guy. I just tend to vote third party in national races. Let's count Thanksgiving glads instead. F'rinstance, we're winning in Iraq! A few more decades of mopping up and we'll be sitting pretty in the finest little democracy in Texas. Oops, I mean the Mideast. If Kerry had won, Iraq could have been the finest little democracy in the Northeast. Where urban pols know how democracy works in a one camel town.

Another glad is that TV programming has improved. Particularly the reality shows. We can now watch real people plead for their lives before being beheaded. And see other folks being shot or blown-up. We can also vicariously experience the grief of weeping friends and relatives in lots of home towns both here and abroad. Earlier in the year we got reality porn from Abu Ghraib without having to spring for cable. But the best part of enhanced viewing is how a click of the remote brings up death's little cheerleaders. Justifying their love. Go Democracy builders! Go oppressed Muslims!

There's glad news too on the economic front. In Afghanistan, the opium crop is bigger and better than ever. Stateside areas with economies dependent on drug trade and the rehab biz will soon be popping. It'll be one long Black Friday. Also be glad that despite expressing deep concern about terrorism on our soil and lobbying for more federal funding of local anti-terror programs, few pols from either party will do much to stem illegal immigration. Those on the right know we need cheap workers to do the jobs Americans refuse. After all, lazy ol' Joe Six Pack is still sulking over lost manufacturing jobs and union wages-- though opportunities to work for 5 dollars a week and live in warrens over Chinese restaurants abound. Organized crime groups advertise all the time: wanted, slave labor. On the left, folks don't like to seem xenophobic about potential voters. And liberal homes need cleaning too. Then there's the housing market. Both sides know a steady stream of fresh blood is required so the Ponzi won't collapse. Five dollars a week income (even if unverified) buys a whole lotta taxpayer insured FHA house.

Another glad will be had when Dubya starts appointing Supremes: a mega spectacle of role reversal will ensue. Though some on the right still decry "activist judges" most will find them AOK if the activism comes down on the right side. While the left will morph into the South circa 1950's and denounce mandarins in black robes. Back on the polarized ranch, each side will demonize the supporters of the other: a cast of narrow bible thumping cretins will rassle depraved baby killing elitists on a comic book field of dreams. Word balloons will billow from the lips of pundits and a whacking good time will be had by all.

The gladdest glad thing is that history has absolved feminist theoreticians who in the 70's said "the personal is the political". Maybe it wasn't true then, but now it's dead on. God, guns and gays have become the issues that define national politics. Everybody's inner self is on display-- symbolized by their choice of political candidate. Making campaigns a highly charged referendum on the state of one's soul, rather than the state of the nation.

Meanwhile, the glad game of government is played by two amazingly similar parties. Despite quarrels over how to wage it, both go for war in a big way. Despite quarrels over how to spend it, both go for public money in a big way. Despite quarrels over how to use it, both are big on big government and despite quarrels over who dood it, both have helped weaken one of the country's greatest achievements: a stable middle class.

Ralph Kramden-- aka Chef Of The Future-- where art thou?

Carola Von Hoffmannstahl Solomonoff

I'm so glad/I'm so glad/I'm glad I'm glad I'm glad

"I'm So Glad," Cream, 1966, written by Skip James

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Copyright (c) 2004 by Carola Von Hoffmannstahl-Solomonoff. This material may be freely distributed subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the Open Publication License. This license relieves the author of any liability or implication of warranty, grants others permission to use the Content in whole or in part, and insures that the original author will be properly credited when Content is used. It also grants others permission to modify and redistribute the Content if they clearly mark what changes have been made, when they were made, and who made them. Finally, the license insures that if someone else bases a work on this Content, that the resultant work will be made available under the Open Publication License as well.

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