Matt's blog

The story of me, an American in Edinburgh, Scotland finding my place as a musician, a husband, a father and a Christian.

Final Confession-My dad was a hippie, I think it's in my blood

I don't like politics. Maybe I'm too young, maybe I'm too idealistic, maybe I need to become jaded or force myself into blissful ignorance. I didn't think there was any good choice in this year's presidential election. I was disgusted at how the race was run on both sides. Neither candidate put forth an actual plan for the next term should they be elected. The campaign was spent simply insulting and smearing the other candidate. I didn't want any part of it. I did not, and still do not, support Bush, but I could not vote against him because Kerry gave me no reason to think he was worth having in office. Andrew said, "when is ANY politician direct about the things that he/she wants to do?" Ok, this may be the way the political game is played, but I don't like it. I'll have to wait till I'm older and numb to the world before I can play along with this kind of politics. Aside from that, I heard on NPR today a commentator remarking on how unusual it was in this campaign that neither candidate spent much time putting forth his plan for his presidency. The way campaigns are run in this country need to change.

So, you can call me a failure of democracy, but I don't think I am. I spent a lot of time thinking long and hard about this election and decided that I could not in good faith give my support to either candidate. I was definitely more against Bush than I was against Kerry, but I'm not ready to reduce myself to choosing the lesser of two evils.

"That's all well and good," you say, "but what are you going to do for the next four years now that Bush has won?" Here's what I think is going to happen in the next four years and this is what I plan to do about it:

William Strauss and Neil Howe wrote a book entitled The Fourth Turning in which they describe the four stages of what they see as the cyclical flow of history. The four stages are:1. Crisis, 2. Stability, 3. Revolution, 4. Unraveling. The cycle then repeats. Here's how they view the last half of the 20th century:

WWII: Crisis
50's: Stability
60's-70's: Revolution
80's-90's: Unraveling
2000: Crisis

You can already see how Bush is struggling to bring stability to the world thrown into crisis by global terrorism. This stability is coming at the cost of personal liberty, the USA's global reputation and the lives of our soldiers and foreign citizens. The period since 9/11 has been marked by militarily enforced stability, at least in the US homeland. As Bush's supporters are quick to point out, there has not been a terrorist attack on the US since 9/11. It seems to me like the stage may be set for revolution in the next four years, and I'll be ready. If there comes an opportunity to march on Washington D.C. to protest a proposed pre-emptive war in Iran, I'll be there with bell(bottom)s on. I'll even paint a peace sign on the back of my very fuel efficient Toyota.

"Ok," you say, "but what if revolution doesn't come and we don't get that opportunity?" Well, I'm going to send a letter to President Bush (this time via the post office, not my blog) asking him to refrain from any more pre-emptive wars. Other than these two options, I'm not really sure what I can do. Ideas? Leave a comment, I'd be glad to have them.

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