Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Back From the Dead 

I decided to finally stick my head out of my spider-hole and post. My seven day hiatus was part intentional, part unintentional. After the election, is was in a mood to do some cocooning, where I ignored much of the news and spent my time doing laundry, sleeping in, and trying out my copy of GTA: San Andreas.

I was feeling more than a little guilty about the layoff, and I even had a couple of inquiries asking if I had fallen off the planet (thanks for those). I've spent the last day or so catching up on all my primary blog reads, and I now feel completely vindicated with my decision to play hermit.

Apparently, I'm not the only one burnt out on politics, red vs blue, and trying to figure out what the hell the term "moral values" means. As Michele can tell you, many people are taking grief from both political extremes:

...So here we have the left engaging in mockery and ridicule, further alienating themselves from the rest of the world. That the two memes swarming the left - Jesusland and the notion of them being reality-based (as opposed to what?) - tells you something of their attitude towards the rest of you.

But they aren't the only problem. Because now I'm suddenly a target not just for the left, but for the right. I'm being told I must fight the good fight, rethink my stance on gay issues, abortion, the definition of family and religion. I'm seeing the first hints of alienation. They got my war on terror vote. I was part of them for this whole election cycle, working side by side to get Bush elected. And now that the election is over, I've been given a put up or shut up demand. Bad enough to get the bullets from the opposing party, I'm now being eased out the door of my own.

First off, I find the whole Jesusland vs the United States of Canada meme obnoxious, simple-minded, and patronizing. I think there are much better models if you insist on splitting the US of A into separate cultures. I think Jeff Jarvis is more spot-on when he sees the Red vs Blue split is a difference between urban and non-urban (suburbs, exburbs, and rural) cultures:

...And I ended my day hearing an unnamed major media executive (unnamed because it was at an off-the-record event) talking about this very same phenom: Big media isn't so much liberal as urban, he said; there's a different world view and the election revealed that. New Orleans went for Kerry; Louisiana went for Bush; St. Louis went for Kerry; Missouri went for Bush; urban vs. ex.

I like this model, via Lex Communis a while back, that divides the US into ten voting regions that cut across state lines. It makes the point that most states are split between red and blue, and that not all red (or blue) states think the same anyway. Most importantly, we are not just simply two camps who are all about Us vs Them.

Personally, I straddle the line between red and blue both figuratively and literally (raised in conservative Fresno, live in the liberal SF Bay Area). The red vs blue talk is interesting to me at first, but it gets old very fast. To lose either would mean then nation would be incomplete. The election's over, and there is more to life than throwing stones at one's political opponents.

I think a lot of these hotheads need a more constructive outlet for their frustrations. They should do as I do: get Grand Theft Auto, cheat to get the tank, then run over or blast anything that moves. I find it very cathartic, and much easier than starting a secession movement.

Welcome back!

I'm going to have to try that disapperaing act some day. Maybe for a month or two.

I hit the point of alienation that you're feeling starting back in 2000. My disconnect from politcs was local in the extreme sense, and I wound up OD'ing on it, for hours on end every week.

I look at the landscape now, and I'm much happier I voted Libertarian. Not that I agree with everything they say(and I would be scared if that was the case), but I agree with their major points more than I do for either of the big two parties.

As for seccsion, I am content to have Southern Cal ditch the rest of Northern California, but we will have to forcibly occupy the water ways that we need to live on. That's a real issue we need to settle, how much water LA is allowed to steal per year.
Hi Bill, thanks for the greeting.

I think there are actually THREE Californias (I'll write more about that sometime). If you want to keep the water, SoCal will have to occupy or negotiale with the Shasta region, which would fall into California Heartland (inland CA and the Central Coast). I think they would give the water just to screw over Northern CA (basically SF, Monterey, and Eureka).
You're right about there being 3 real ones, but each side only thinks of there being 2. Southern Cal thinks they end at the Teachappi's, or maybe just at Bakersfield. They also claim dibs on the eastern sierra, through the City of LA taking over the water a century ago.

Then there is Northern Cal, which starts at the Oregon border, and ends somewhere on the SF Bay. Some say at the north end, some say at the south end. The culture can even be extruded down to maybe Santa Barbara on the coast, if you're really pushing it.

Then there is the Central California, which doesn't really belong to either group. But if you're in Nor Cal, you call them part of Southern California, and if you live in LA, they are part of Nor Cal.

But I think we can figure out away to take your delta water, and the western sierra while we are at it. Then after that, we will start draining Lake Superior into the Colorado River, and drink that until there are no more great lakes.
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