Saturday, November 29, 2008

We Just Keep On Rolling Along

Angelia has some fascinating thoughts about the nature of politics and those of us who have what she calls a "love affair" with things political in spite of the realization that all of our efforts will likely not change the nature of things:

See - like most current and former newsies, I have an unhealthy love affair with politics. I don’t know why. For most, I suppose it is a relationship based on co-dependency and a deep abiding belief that we can actually “change” the nature of things.

Usually, we can’t.

As a result, we are constantly struggling to accept things as they are. You know, left is the opposite of right and politics isn’t the result of intelligent, fair-minded people becoming caught up in the desire to win or because they’re passionate about a cause. No, the truth is politics are a true reflection of the people involved. Some of those people are a few sandwiches short a picnic, some are self-righteous assholes - and none are likely to change. Therefore, we should all be laughing hysterically over this “move to the center” strategy both political parties have considered - because unless the plan is to meet in the middle for a brawl, it cannot happen.

Then she says she is taking a break from politics for awhile:

And I think when you find yourself snarling at others or feeling overly frustrated: it’s time to break-up with politics and cool your heels for awhile. Wander off, take a deep breath, marinate your thoughts in cheap domestic beer, hold out for promises of change… or at least take a few weeks to convince yourself - no really. this time will be different.

Then, you can jump back in and prepare to be disillusioned all over again. Why jump back in? Hell, I don’t know… perhaps because a few of us are convinced that disillusionment is safer than disinterest. Hey, I said it was unhealthy, didn’t I?

I share Angelia's frustration, except that this is how I felt after 2006. I seriously thought about hanging it up after a campaign that I thought was terribly bruising to heart, mind, body, and soul-and most of the people I was actively supporting two years ago won. I was complaining about how bad the climate had gotten before the election was even over. It was actually my wife, who is not a terribly political person at all, who convinced me not to do so. She said I didn't have it in me to just quit politics. Her exact words were that I am "a nerd when it comes to politics," and that I know politics better than anything else on this earth, and that as a result, if I left the scene before I was an old man in the retirement home, I would be bored to tears.

Nicole was correct.

Politics and public life are not always a clean business, and that is unfortunate, because there really are some good people out there who are in the public arena, but the best people often get no notice or plenty of scorn.

But this is a hard life and a difficult thing to stay away from, because if there weren't folks speaking out for what is right, who would speak for them?

So the good folks just keep on rolling because we enjoy politics-and because it is the right thing to do.

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