Whadda Ya Mean, Disenfranchised? Well, Let Me Tell Ya…

Disenfranchised:

1. To deprive (a person) of a right of citizenship, as of the right to vote.

2. To deprive of a franchise, privilege, or right.

I suppose we could start with a definition, tends to set the ground rules so to speak…but sometimes dictionary definitions don’t always cut it man, so stagnant, cold…and this definition certainly is. When one says they are or feel disenfranchised this often lends itself to all topics voting, such as not having the right to vote or being barred from voting but in my situation, this is certainly not the case. I can vote in every damned election I please, but that isn’t the point; what is it I am voting for?  Voting is only as good as your choices, yes sir, and this gets to the heart of it, many ideas to come. All through my raising’s in this country I was taught the virtues of voting, civic responsibility, my voice…blah, blah, blah…and at one time I believed it. Hell I did vote before, Clinton, voted for Clinton and then I never voted again. I helped to put that guy in office and then I watched his move to the middle, directly away from everything I believed in. He cut benefits, health care failed, he passed the telecommunications act of 96 (thank you for clear channel), oh and he bombed Iraq. Why the hell did he bomb Iraq? What the fuck did the Iraqis ever do to me?) I bet I would feel different if they told me I couldn’t vote anymore, probably, yeah…but they haven’t, they won’t. I’m part of the ruling class. I am a white male in a privileged society which means I typically don’t have to deal with race or gender issues unless I decide to, so really, what’s the problem? What’s one bad president? Isn’t just one. I can’t think of a good one. Jesus, look at the last election…I could have voted for McCain or Obama. Sure could have, but I didn’t. What for? A quick perusal of the campaign literature showed neither one would have represented issues important to me, as an American citizen. Issues such as the environment, transparency in government, repealing the patriot act, increasing the benefits to the most disadvantaged, net neutrality, stopping the wars, bringing home the troops, prosecution of the previous administration, restoration of the Louisiana wetlands, rebuilding the levees round New Orleans…etc…man, the list goes on and on. I could have voted, but when one candidate is against everything I believe in, and the other only pretends to be for it while taking huge contributions from British Petroleum, I got no choices. The campaign machines got together and gave me snake eyes, nobody to believe in…therefore I was left without the vote.

Let’s talk about the environment. James Lovelock, a globally respected climate thinker and founder of the Geia principle said recently, “I don’t think we’ve yet evolved to the point where we’re clever enough to handle as complex a problem as climate change,” which is a polite way of saying we’re too stupid to really do anything about it and I would happen to agree.  The only individuals and entities in any position to do anything large enough, fast enough to make an impact on global warming are politicians. So what do they do? Band-aid’s on severed arms. I mean, jesus christ, in this country, these jack-holes are still debating whether there is even a problem. Emotions dictate how this makes absolutely no sense, none at all; these are typically the same people still debating Creationism. But when logic steps in, it all makes perfect sense. People and entities making a great deal of money right now could find their fortunes changing if the status quo were changed. The people and the entities with a great deal of money right now, they also have the power, the money to sway politicians, the money to be politicians, the money to buy advertising, run full-fledged sabotage campaigns against anyone who disagrees. When scientists show time and time again that we are in big trouble, the response by those in power has seldom been to do anything about the problem, unless you consider the problem to be science and scientists. What the fuck? I gotta think a lot of these people have children, grandchildren. It would seem they have the same vested interest in solving the environmental problems as I do, maybe more cause I don’t have any kids and don’t intend too. Do you ever take a look around you? So many days I move about my environment…a dying factory town and I just look at the families and houses and listen to people arguing about who has the biggest yard. I watch them build interstates and I stare at polluted great lakes and, I wonder, amazed…”Do you people realize, really understand that your way of life is ending? Do you stop to think how radically different things will be when your kids are your age? Do you realize there is a good chance that your grand-kids will never get to be your age? This isn’t science fiction, it’s real…very real. I’m convinced that people either don’t understand, or they willfully ignore it…(like I once did, just not wanting to know about it), try to avoid the reality at all costs. Any politician that really tried to do something about this problem is dead in the water. Every corporation with an interest in changing nothing heaves money on his opponent and attacks environmentalist caution as the work of quacks. They have to I suppose. What if they’re wrong? So I do what I can. I recycle, turn off the lights and conserve water. I walk wherever I can and try to do all things environmental…but so what? When everything I do for a year is dwarfed by one company in a  day who doesn’t give a fuck and there is nothing I can do about it?

This is being disenfranchised.

When every politician (especially on the right) makes it a point to go to church, or at least say how they go to church, the mosque, the temple…and they vote their conscience with the lord or Allah…what does this mean for me? Nothing, but it usually works against me. These Christians especially…man, Republicans have turned the manipulation of Christians into an art form. This party fucks them every chance they get by gutting unions that protect the right of red-staters, by scaring them with abortions and homosexuality while they rob em’ blind and set up legislation to make it possible for the banks to take everything the politician’s can’t on the front end, and any time anyone makes some headway against their coercive bullshit, and actually gets a voting bloc to understand how no, the Republicans have never cared about your small farms, hardware stores, mom and pop anything in your small town main street… someone on the right shouts Gay Marriage! Abortion! And the red staters fall in line so fast the next thing ya know the Democrat is saying the same thing. Both sides use the loss of jobs to justify never changing anything that would be helpful in the long run and then when they get into office what happens? The jobs disappear anyway.  And then at the next election when someone issues a warning about the way that coal mine is dumping runoff into the river and destroying your water supply…the goddamned Republicans and Democrats do it again, what, ya wanna lose jobs? What? Ya wanna let homosexuals and lesbians abort babies for sport? Better vote with me or you’ll be truly screwed in the eyes of the Looooorrrrrdddd!

Eat me, this is being disenfranchised.

I believe there is a limit to the amount of prying the government can do in one’s life and I don’t care if we are in a war without end. I don’t care if the terrorists are hiding in the frozen food section of my grocery store. I don’t care if the technology has changed and now the FBI wants…the NSA wants…the CIA wants…the local cops want… don’t care. My right to privacy is inviolate, and no, much as many politicians would like you to think, this doesn’t mean I have something to hide. I don’t, but what I do have going on in my life is none of your fucking business, unless I choose to make it so. Don’t try to scare me. Don’t try to strong arm me. Don’t try to tell me how unpatriotic I am being. I’ve read the constitution and I’ll take the comparison of my beliefs to your action any day of the week, so fuck you. My local police department has a fucking armored personnel carrier. What? What the hell for? And no, I don’t believe in gun control, but I do believe in gun safety. I don’t even own a gun but I start to wonder whether I’ll need one, but it isn’t the drug dealers or the burglar that has me concerned. I have hockey stick hanging on the side of my door, just ready for those gentleman should they ever decide to come in uninvited and I don’t really need anything more than that against them, but a tank? Jesus Christ. One candidate said he would never repeal the laws that have given these agencies this power and despite being a Vietnam Veteran who was tortured, he also said he wouldn’t do anything about the way our operatives now torture? Oh and Obama, well, he said he would do a lot, but hasn’t done much to impress me…banking reform and health care reform he caved in on, watered down to the point of near meaningless…Band-aid action, baby…so what is it I am supposed to do about this?

This is being disenfranchised.

I believe that Wal-Marts shouldn’t run small towns. I believe they should give health insurance to everybody, pay adequate overtime. I believe that in times of economic crisis, this isn’t the time for state and federal governments to cut services and benefits to people who are losing everything, who are mentally ill, who are old and infirm and on and on to essentially everyone who gets impacted by severe economic crisis while plenty of money is given to prisons, to subsidies for agra-corporations who are screwing with our food supply without long range epa testing (the funding for which Bush gutted) to big box stores like Wal-Mart so they can go ahead and run out of business mom and pop stores thus ensuring there are that many more people who need services that are getting cut to help them build more and destroy more…and the cycle goes on and on and nobody does anything about it because they figure that for shit Wal Mart jobs are better than no jobs, but I happen to disagree with this lie of reasoning…

This is being disenfranchised.

I believe in the right of assembly, that means that containment zones at Democratic and Republican conventions are bullshit.

I believe that when buildings are abandoned by corporations in decaying downtowns, these buildings should be taken over by squatters with no place to live.

I believe in universal, single payer health care systems.

I believe that the war on drugs is racist and used to inflate budgets and build prisons and do we really need it anymore anyway? We have the war on terror now.

I believe in restoring the wetlands of the Louisiana coast, that everyone kicked out by Hurricane Katrina should be ushered back in, that the housing projects shouldn’t have been closed and that the flood act of 1928 should be repealed so we can sue the shit out of the corp of engineers.

I believe in net neutrality.

I believe that the solution to higher crime rates is not tougher policing and longer jail penalties but more opportunity for people in poverty.

I believe that the assets of British Petroleum should be seized, BP should stop using Corexit and the executives who ran this show should be brought up in charges, instead of some guy who just went for a swim off Grand Isle.

I believe that whenever a talking head on the radio or sunday morning news programs says something he knows to be a total fabrication, and a quote is provided to prove they lied, they should be fined a grand, every fucking time.

I believe that most people who define themselves as an expert, are full of shit.

I believe that Yoo at Berkeley should be locked in fucking jail.

I believe in a shield law for every reporter and whistleblower.

I believe that when the founding fathers said we all had a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness and they meant everybody, and no, they weren’t kidding.

I believe that the concentration of wealth is not just a matter of hard work and is generally bad for everyone.

I propose that everyone who criticizes this country as heading down the road to socialism be barred from a public education, libraries, and when they’re in trouble neither the police are fire department be allowed to respond. Fuck ’em.

I believe that the Israeli government sanctions murder, treats Palestinians horribly and should be put on UN sanctions, as should we  for doing the same thing to Native Americans in this country.

I believe that slavery still exists in America, except now we call it the prison system.

And yes,

This is why I feel disenfranchised.

I’m an American…yeah, but I sure as hell don’t feel like I’m in America. I don’t know what I’m suppsoed to feel like when I am not represented by any politician, no way, no how. I do understand I have it prety good here, but this doesn’t mean I should lie down at the feet of everyone who is trying to make this place even fucking worse in the name of God, or fear, or jobs or whatever bogeyman runs the news agenda for the day.

I don’t go that way.

All I got left is a voice, that is ever more difficult to hear due to the consolidation of radio, publishing, newspapers, television and if the telecoms have their way, the internet…

This is why I feel disenfranchised.

This is being disenfranchised.

This entire voting scam only works for the mainstream of society, for those who believe in the myths of our country, the idealism spoken of at fourth of July parades, on Memorial Day and on Anniversarys of September 11th: land of the free and the home of the brave, real patriots and real America, this is a god fearing, christian country

Essentially, all these ideals that don’t speak to me now, and never did.

This is being disenfranchised.

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