Monday, September 15, 2008

Shock, Comfort and Sarah Palin

For the last two weeks, I've been scratching my head trying to figure out how a country could be seduced into the circus surrounding Sarah Palin. And I think I've got an answer. Shock and comfort. This is just my gut talking and I'll do the research later, but, my personal experience with trauma and shock is that when I'm feeling that way, I usually reach for something that represents comfort - a warm blanket, a baseball game, old episodes of the Mary Tyler Moore Show, red wine and dark chocolate. So what does a country do when it is suffering from prolonged trauma and shock? Return to what we know, or what we think we should know. Return to rhetoric, to the ideas that make us believe we are all going to be all right in this post-Bush/Cheney syndrome we are coming to the end of. To hell with policy, with truths, with what makes sense and is staring us in the face, that a hanging chad at the end of McCain/Palin will take us past reason, past caring, past any semblance of truth.

When we are made to be afraid of everything, then we cling to the things that will make us feel safe. Home, country, the Almighty. Rarely, when most of us are scared out of our bootstraps, do we ever reach for reason.

The real legacy of the Bush/Cheney octet is this - they have successfully created a country where a significant group of citizens are scared. On a daily basis. And not scared of monsters under the bed scared. Scared of basic things such as jobs, bills, health care, education, our planet's well being, security. I know because I'm one of them.

I recently had a heated conversation with a school mom about McCain/Palin and she launched into a talk about self-sufficiency, not expecting others to take care of you and I asked her a simple question - what is so bad about being a nation of people which cares about one another, which translates that care into conscious action that helps to better all of our lives? When did we become a country who cannot display care?

I look at Sarah Palin and I shake my head. I've waited my whole life to vote for a woman for executive office and this is the best we could do? I listen to her scorn and evasion and call herself a reformer and wonder, is this the best we can do? I watch John McCain fumble over words like 'fundamental,' strong' to describe the debacle our economy has become and I wonder, what happened to that war hero?

Is this John McCain the best John McCain can do?

Is this the best we can do?

Please pass me the chocolate.

6 comments:

'cuz I'm the mommy, that's why! said...

I'm going to need something stronger than chocolate for this election.

Boobies&BodilyFunctions said...

No kidding - everyday she scares me more!

Cindy said...

Post election comment here, from a McCain/Palin supporter. Sarah Palin, a Smart powerful women. Not really the best canidate for VP but only because she is so down earth. She needs more time for politics to really corupt her before she is ready to go any further into the political world. As for a caring country. That is a total contradiction for anyone who wants to end the war in Iraq(not saying you said that just that most people who didn't support McCain/Palin were against the war). Why can't people take care of themselves?? I am a 31 year ols Single mom who just recently got a MAJOR cut in my hours at work. to a tune of only making $400 a month compared to my $1400 a month. And I have yet asked anyone for help not even my child's father. I am taking care of my needs. No one else should have to. Who cares if they feel it is there job to or not. Welcome to a world where No I can't live on $400 a month for the rest of my life. But I sure as heck can work my butt off and teach my Child that you don't need hand outs to make it in this world and you sure as heck don't need to take other peoples hard earned money.

Karen said...

Sarah Palin scares the crap out of me. I'm really hoping she just disappears into the tundra now that the election is over, but something tells me she isn't going away without a bit of a fight.

Boobies&BodilyFunctions said...

Sarah Palin has become the thing she was parodied about and now there is something so "Joe the Plumber" about her almost rabid availability for the press. Heard last night she might be signing a book deal - will you buy it???

Lisa Trank-Greene said...

Dear Cindy - sorry so late to respond to your posting - regarding taking money from other people when one needs help. I'll ask you to remember that we are a country 'of the people, by the people, and for the people.' The money you speak about is not other people's money, it is ours in the way of taxes taken out of our dwindling paychecks. Self-sufficiency is admirable and what we all strive for, but please remember that the public money used to pay unemployment, insurance for uninsured children, etc. does not sit in some private bank account. It is part of the public bank account that I've made regular deposits to since I started working at sixteen years of age.