friday night i was standing under starry skies in the finger lakes national forest and on the radio was democracy now.
they were talking of george mcgovern, lying in hospice with not very much time left on his meter.
they were playing the documentary one bright shining moment, and i heard excerpts from mcgovern's stunning come home america speech.
i'll tell you a thing: my family voted for nixon, of course they did. and my third grade class voted for nixon, and since we lived in maryland, we knew all about watergate and just sort of shrugged because it was politics as usual and no point acting all surprised about it now.
but with this country mired down in its longest, most expensive, most pointless war ever, his words and the feeling of that time rings truer now than ever.
in 1968 we had hope. in 1972 we had hope that we could change, that we could stop bringing our young men home in body bags, that we could use all that money to feed and clothe people but we are more jaded, more hopeless now, more willing to bring destructon to other nations and we have no real idea why except we have to bring them "freedom" and "democracy" except it's hard to bring a thing like that by force to other nations especially when you are taking it bit by bit from your own citizens.
here's a fun exercise: google "erosion of civil rights".
do you notice that most everything you find is all about how bad things were for freedom under the bush administrations?
things have only gotten worse under obama. don't get get me wrong; i think things would be worser under a republican administration, but the democrats ain't no darlings. partisan liberals won't tell you that, though. they won't tell you that your choices are essentially between minor degrees of bad and worse and while large corporations and huge power structures performs sleight of hand to direct your attention away from what's actually good for you or important to you they will whip up your fear and a great deal of media hype and try to get you to vote against your own interests.
they're good at it, too.
george mcgovern, in your dying days, i salute you. things might have been different.