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Politics

Who Are These Idiots?

Show of hands:

Who is voting for Rick Santorum?

Who has a Michelle Bachmann sign on their front lawn?

Am I the only person who thought Newt Gingrich was dead?

Does Rick Perry scare anyone else than beside me and people on death row in Texas?

If Gary Johnson walked into your living room and introduced himself, would you know who he is?

What could Ron Paul say or do that would get your vote?

Is anyone mad at Jon Huntsman leaving the Utah governorship and leaving us with Gary Herbert?

Do the words President Mitt Romney make your skin crawl?

It must be tough to be a Republican these days. At the very least, it must be difficult to be a candidate for president for the GOP in 2012. How can the Republicans compose over half of the nation’s voting population and the best they can produce is this Motley crew? If I was a Republican, I don’t think I could stop vomiting to know that this is the pool of people I could vote for. Seriously, isn’t there one decent conservative in this country that wants to be president? I am dumbfounded that with less than a year away from the general election, the best the GOP can put up would have a hard time getting elected in Carbon County.

I think it would be easier for me to get a temple recommend card than vote for any of these big dumb ding-dongs. Even if I had a problem with President Obama, there is no way I could put my “X” next to Michelle Bachmann’s name and I even own one of her t-shirts. I bought it as an eff you to my liberal friends and promised to throw it away the moment I say a Bachmann sign on somebody’s front lawn. As it is now, that shirt is folded nicely and safely in my chest of drawers.

I am a Democrat for a variety of reasons but the biggest reason is that my parents were. I was raised in a house that worshipped Robert and Jack Kennedy, Martin Luther King and Jimmy Carter. My first memory of national politics was my father promising to drive to work on top of his car if Carter beat Ron Reagan in the 1980 presidential election. I woke up extra early to see my father pilot his whale of a Buick Electra to the hospital only to sadly see him sit behind the wheel.

I am a Democrat because I believe in the equality of people, the right to earn a living, the role of government of providing social assistance to the public and the right for women to control their reproductive rights. I believe in social welfare and public health care. Government should support the arts as well as protect veterans. I am also a Nevadan and this means that I support capital punishment, gun rights and the role of the Federal Government to protect this country’s borders. I might be on the conservative side but I am still a party line voting Democrat and would rather sacrifice my first born than vote for a Republican.

In a word, I am pro rational people and anti wackos and if you are too, you’d vote for the donkey every November. Don’t infringe on other people’s ability to live their lives and try not to impose too many restrictions on our day-to-day activities. The problem is that I am living in a country that is chockfull of Toby Keiths and Glenn Becks. There are way too many rightwing wackos trying to make this country like the 1950s and unless these creationists can invent a time machine, there is no way we’re going back to the days of Don Draper and Dwight Eisenhower.

I used to care about politics. I graduated from the University of Nevada with a degree in Political Science (for the record, the hardest of the soft sciences). I interned for the Nevada State Legislature for a woman named Gene Segerblom (D-Boulder City). I used to read the newspaper with an eye towards national politics and I considered the election cycle to be the ultimate sporting event. I think I mostly cared about politics because there was a guy named Bill Clinton running the country and I loved him.

I became a Bill Clinton fan at the right time in my life. I was 18 when I voted for the first time in the 1992 elections and I remember the excitement of watching “my guy” win. We have this roster of folks that compose “our guys” and Clinton was batting clean-up behind Tony Gwynn, Indiana Jones and Frank Zappa. It seems almost inappropriate to gain heroes as you get older. Because of this, I am very careful when I describe my fascination with Tim Tebow or Adam Carolla. I am a little long in the tooth to start putting up strangers posters on my bedroom wall.

I think there are only a couple of times in our lives that we are allowed to love or hate somebody with reckless abandonment. I was talking with my buddy, Brandon, about his hatred of John Elway. He ranted and raved about how much he hated that tombstone-toothed Boy Scout and what a tool he was. He told me that he would never hate anyone as much as Elway again. I agreed. There is no way that he would ever waste so much time and energy hating a stranger. There are simply not enough hours in the day with work, family and the entire minutia that we need to satisfy in order to go to bed and wake up to do it again.

The two events that stopped me from following politics happened recently. The first was moving to Utah. When I was living in Nevada, state and national politics meant something. Nevadans are a feisty group of people who have issues that they are ready to empty out their gun lockers to solve. Whiskey is for drinking but water is for fighting is the title bout during every election. We had rural versus urban issues that impacted the state and citizens willing to take to the streets to show how they felt how the state was being run.

Coming to Utah, I discovered (and I hope you’re sitting down) that the Beehive State is the most homogenous group of people this side of a Michael Bolton concert. Between the Mormons and the rightwing Kool-Aid, following state politics is like watching paint dry. The statewide GOP controls the state and they allocate a handful of districts for their liberal brethren. Republican control of the assembly and governor’s house makes for rubber stamp politics and that makes for some pretty boring headlines.

The second reason that I lost my love affair with politics was meeting Utah Democrats. What a group of pussies. Have none of these people seen Rocky or 300? Utah Democrats are a party of appeasers and history has never been kind to those who bow down to tyrants. If I ever ran for office in the state, the first thing I would do was find a soapbox the size of the Tabernacle and pump my fist into the chest of every Republican in the state demanding an explanation why they act as if we are still living in the 19th century. If you already know that you are in the minority, why not be the loudest, most obnoxious force during the campaigns? What do we have to lose? Our dignity? Living with Republicans has already stripped us of that. Our values? We’re forced to compromise on that every day. Utah Democrats need to take a page from King Leonidas and stand up to the hordes of un-bathed conservatives.

Republicans make my skin crawl because they can’t seem to go two minutes without bringing up Jesus or a balanced budget. In addition, Republicans are terrible bores. Ever since Chuck Heston died, I can’t think of one entertainer on the right side of the aisle that I liked. I am a really big fan of The Planet of the Apes movies. They’re not funny. Think I am wrong? Tell me if you might be a redneck. What you would rather watch: the Country Music Awards or the Golden Globes? The only way Ricky Gervais is at the CMAs is if he is being burned in eulogy.

In the end, it won’t matter. Obama is going to make mincemeat out of any of the dunderheads that win the GOP nomination, Utah will vote red and Mike Lee will still be allowed to play senator. How did Utah double-down of two of the most repulsive politicians in Congress: Mike Lee and Jason Chaffetz? What sort of nefarious deal did these two turkeys make with the devil to be allowed anywhere near Washington? Makes me long for the days of Las Vegas versus the rest of the state…

At least I can ski and golf in the same day.

Ben Raskin bartends at Keys On Main Wednesday through Saturday. Follow him on Twitter @BennyRaskin. He’ll need your vote this November.

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About Ben Raskin

Born in El Cajon, raised in Las Vegas, educated in Reno and living in Salt Lake City. I bartend, write, box and live in Sugarhouse UT.

Discussion

4 thoughts on “Who Are These Idiots?

  1. Yet another good post Benny!

    Posted by Paul Malmstrom | December 14, 2011, 4:42 pm
  2. “Is anyone mad at Jon Huntsman leaving the Utah governorship and leaving us with Gary Herbert?”

    YES. Painfully so.

    Posted by Molly | December 15, 2011, 12:08 pm
  3. Great post Ben.

    Posted by Marie Allan | December 15, 2011, 1:24 pm
  4. Great column.

    Posted by Ryan Rettke | December 16, 2011, 7:17 am

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