Virtue signaling at the end of the world
Serious business on your lapel, let the people know how you feel. And every bumper sticker on the back of your car makes you feel a little more real, a little more real.
Mr. Freedom, big time talker, oh thank you very much but no.
For real, I can’t.
The two closest friends I have in the world, I have no idea what their political leanings are. And I couldn’t give less of a fuck. As a matter of fact, if I hear someone start talking about it I’ll break out into a full sprint like Carl Lewis in the 100 meter. As long as I don’t break a hip, and I can get my hands on some electrolytes, I’ll be grateful I didn’t have to hear that shit.
I only voted once in my life. I really liked the way that Obama dude talked. Whether he was a good President or not? Ask a hundred people and you’ll get a hundred opinions. But later that day I had to go to work. And the day they elected the next guy? I had to go to work. And the next guy? You get it right? The idea that Barak, or any other dude in a blue suit gives a rip about me or my family never even crossed my mind. I see folks standing on the overpass for I-95 holding up signs supporting the last President. Walk on over to his country club and see if he’ll buy you a sandwich. Not likely. These guys are not from our world, and we are not from theirs.
Which flies in the face of how this thing was set up originally doesn’t it?
To quote the great Philadelphian Rocky Balboa – “Yo, don’t I got some rights or something? The ones they wrote on that paper down the street there?”
Maybe I misunderstood when they explained it to me in school, but I always thought that each state would send someone to represent them for a few years. Then that representative would return to their normal life, family, job etc. That way we’d be represented by a person from our community, someone just like us, with our best interests in mind.
What we’ve got now are these career sheisters bending over for whoever gave them the money to run their campaigns. Big Pharma, Big Oil, Big Agriculture. Big pile of dog shit. Well, I’ll step around it before it get’s on my Chucks Taylor’s.
I try to keep up and understand what’s what. Not by watching the cable news channels I’ll tell you that much. It’s like listening to sports radio in Philly versus sports radio in Boston. You know what they’re gonna say before you even turn it on. And social media is like listening to the callers on those sports shows back in the day.
“John from Northeast Philly, you’re live-“
“Tom Brady sucks!”
“Well John, you know he has more Super Bowl rings than any quarterback in history.”
“He sucks! Giselle should dump his ass! We’re gonna crush him on Sunday!”
Okay… Go ahead and insert any President and First Lady for Tom and Giselle and you get the gist. You root for your team, understandable. Admirable even. I mean, it took a lot of intestinal fortitude to be an Eagles fan most of my life. But when the Cowboy’s had Troy Aikman and Emmett Smith, I never actually thought Dallas sucked, but I sure would chant it at the stadium. This is the type of thing I’m talking about.
There are some independent journalists I look to for an unbiased take on issues that I have questions about. Real journalists who look at both sides and present facts that I can use to draw my own conclusions. People Like Matt Taibbi https://taibbi.substack.com/ or Breaking Points podcast with Krystal and Saagar https://www.youtube.com/c/breakingpoints. But honestly man, the whole thing gives me a migraine.
After of all the reading, all the listening, weeding through the endless slick quotes curated by press advisors, the people in power don’t tell you shit. And they run off behind a closed door and make whatever decision is in their best interest. The one most likely to keep them in power. Then they trot out two ancient, out of touch curmudgeons who never worked a day in their life and you gotta pick one. This is the best and the finest people our country has to offer? Where are all the young, idealistic, driven, sharp, healthy people with their finger on the pulse? I’ll tell you where they’re not: In Washington. I mean, who in their right mind would want that job in the first place?
Listen man, I dig it. There are issues we all feel strongly about. Things we care deeply about. We don’t want our rights infringed upon. Hell, a couple years ago they told us all to stay inside and not come out. And when we asked why, they gave us that response our parents used to give when they were out of answers. “Because I said so.”
I just don’t think electing some blow-dried fart is the answer.
Far be it from me to tell anyone else what to do. Same as I don’t want them telling me what to do. If you like some DC suit and you think they’re gonna solve all your problems, then go vote for them. Wear the t-shirt, tell everybody on Facebook. Have at it man. It’s your world and we ain’t got a lot of time here. I just feel like I want to spend my time and attention focused on where I can actually have an impact. Like my community. The people I come into contact with. My family. My friends. That’s what matters.
So, I leave the house, I do the things, I go to the places. And I live in South Florida. Where America comes after they went too hard with the drugs. Not a day goes by that I don’t talk to someone about the number one most important thing in my life. Addiction and recovery. I’ll buy the eggs and the coffee and talk as long as we need to. I’ll tell my story because I know there’s no substitute for one addict helping another. I’ll listen to your story, and if you’re interested, and if you ask, I’ll offer some suggestions. If I don’t have the answers, I’ll help you find someone that does. I’ll do that freely because that’s what people did for me. That’s the way shit’s supposed to work I think.
Anyway, whether you’re on the blue team or the red team, I love you. I really do. You and I are the same thing, we came from the same place, and we’re going back there someday. All the rest is just stories we tell ourselves.
Go outside, do some push-ups if you can, eat some healthy food. Hug the people you love. And maybe talk with someone on the other team, really try to see them as a person. It’s different in person. Face to face. Without a screen, without likes and comments. Spread love. Try to be kind. Maybe don’t let these creeps separate us from each other, ‘cause that’s right where they want us. While we’re busy trying to win a debate with some nameless, faceless person on the internet, our elected officials are sneaking up behind us ready to pull our pants down.
And no one wants to see that.
Jai Guru Deva