Oct 28 2010

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Voting for What?


Very few times in my voting life have I been so unenthusiastic about voting in an upcoming mid term election. After viewing a million negative political ads on television, I realize the only sector of the American economy benefiting from this upcoming election is the media. My status as a registered Independent has allowed me the distinct disadvantage of receiving hundreds of political fliers filling my P.O box daily from both major political parties and their individual candidates. Yesterday I received a low budget, hand written and personally signed post card from someone running for Probate Judge in my area. I considered his appeal to be a refreshing memo of humility in a otherwise cynical outpouring of slick posters and glossy brochures praising the “wonderful” candidates and claiming the criminality of their opponents.

For all my foreign readers who are not familiar with the U.S political process that preceeds an election, the American voter must choose between two party candidates for each office, unless we are lucky enough to have a qualified third party candidate to vote for. Seldom are the major two party candidates qualified for the positions they are running for, however the American voter must choose the best candidate from two terrible choices. In the state of Connecticut where I reside, we have a senatorial race between two horrible candidates, to replace retiring Democratic senator, Chris Dodd, former chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and responsible for the current financial disaster and bank bailouts. He was forced to retire because no one in Connecticut would vote for him, and everyone would prefer to see him in prison. The Democratic replacement candidate is our illustrious state Atty General Richard Blumenthal , whose dubious moral character was exposed by his opponent, when she presented his video taped lies stated before veteran groups about his serving in Vietnam. His disgraceful rejection of a native Connecticut Indian tribe’s federal recognition was his most egregious crime of duplicity. The Schaghticoke Tribal Nation had received BIA approval for their federal recognition, having over 30,000 documents proving more than 200 years of state recognition as a tribe on a treatied reservation. Blumenthal and the current governor appealed to the BIA to revoke their decision and denied 200 years of legal state recognition for the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation. His denigration of the Schaghticokes was outright discrimination by the State of Connecticut and the powerful lobbyists used to challenge the BIA decision. Knowing all of this about Blumenthal has completely disgusted me, and I could never vote for this man for any political office.

Blumenthal’s opponent is Linda McMahon the former CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment. She has committed 50 million dollars of her own money to her campaign against Blumenthal and appeared as an early favorite in the race, until the investigations for her tax evasion and other criminal activities while she was CEO of her company became exposed during the campaign. I continue to be amused at the daily “love”letter I receive in the mail from “Linda”. Her postage cost alone for the last six months to my mail box is over $100 dollars. I would have preferred a check. Linda’s campaign has attracted national attention, due to her wealth and the 50 million personal dollars poured into her campaign. Obama and Clinton recently visited Connecticut to stump for Blumenthal, and it has appeared to work for his struggling campaign. I can not in all good conscience vote for either candidate.

As for the Governor’s race in Connecticut there are two major candidates both equally reprehensible. Tom Foley the Republican candidate, is a former G.W Bush Ambassador to Ireland, and the former failed administrator sent to Iraq to handle the reconstruction efforts and private contractors. His opponent has revealed that he made 20 million dollars from his bankrupting of a textile company and closing it down with the loss of 1000 workers and devastating a community. Everything about this man’s character and competence is an indictment against him. How can anyone possibly consider him a viable candidate for Governor? His opponent Tom Maloy is the Mayor of Stanford, Connecticut. His track record of success, based upon the citizens of Stanford who have united against him, is nothing short of horrendous. According to the mailers and television ads put out by the Citizens group from Stanford, Tom Maloy increased city taxes more than any other mayor in their city’s history and caused the loss of over 13,000 jobs in the city. His mayoral accomplishments included trying to destroy several viable small businesses through eminent domain, and ruthless tactics. His administration was taken to court and lost. Though he is supported by unions he has announced that he would cut state jobs and services. As a Democratic candidate this is a completely moronic statement to make during a recession. His dimwitted debate stance against Foley made him look like a mean spirited incompetent, completely unsuited for the position of Governor. However in Connecticut incompetence in elected officials has always been a big plus for Connecticut voters, verified by the election of Chris Dodd, Joe Lieberman, John Rowland and countless others.

On the overall national elections it appears that every citizen in every state is facing the same problem with incompetent candidates. I am thankful not to have to consider a Tea Party candidate in Connecticut, however it would have been interesting to see the turnout for Sarah Palin in a Blue State. I think she would have surprised many people and got a big crowd. Personally I would have enjoyed seeing her and filming the event. As outrageous as she is, she is fun to watch and listen to. I have considered not voting in this year’s midterm election. I have already been scolded by several Democrats for stating this, but as a registered Independent I care very little about what a Democrat or a Republican have to say, since they virtually parrot each other once they are elected.

Last weekend I brought my dog to a groomer who owns a pet store. In one display cage were a pair of Love Birds perched together,squawking at each other as if they were arguing about something, then one would lean over to the other and gently clean the others feathers and it would quiet down, and the other bird would lean over and clean its mate’s feathers. As I watched them for several minutes I recognized a specific pattern of behavior that reminded me of the two party political system. Two squawking political candidates arguing with each other until they reached a compromise and calmed down, then they will start to squawk at each other again and continue the same pattern of reconciliation over and over again. The behavior of the two party politicians is so like these birds, who were performing for me in their cage, squawking for my attention, creating some argument with each other for my amusement and their own. Both birds seemed content, ignoring the fact that they were living in a cage, completely dependent upon the store keeper for their food,water and shelter.. The cage hadn’t been cleaned that morning and bird droppings covered the bottom and side of the cage, but the Love Birds didn’t seem to mind and indifferently added more droppings to the bottom of the cage, while repeating the pattern of angrily squawking at each other, completely indifferent to the noxious and unsightly mess they had created on the floor of their cage. As I reflected on the similarities of these birds to the political candidates in this recent election, I wondered if a different bird were added to the cage with the Love Birds what might happen. I wondered if the third bird would have been disgusted and appalled by the amount of droppings in the cage, and the Love Birds’ excessive quarreling, and if it might possibly fight the Love Birds for domination of the cage, until it forced the store owner to take him out of the cage, or to remove the Love Birds, and finally clean the cage once he noticed the nasty mess the Love Birds had made.

L.A. Steel

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