As a recovering political junkie, I feel compelled to offer some unsolicited advice to anyone devoting more than 3 minutes a day to presidential politics: just stahp.
Celebrities say it’s our duty. Activists say our children’s futures are on the line. The political class says there’s nothing more important (than them). Super. But exactly which brand of bullshit are you embracing as you analyze the properties of this Giant Douche or that Turd Sandwich?
“My commentary is insightful!”
No, it’s not. Douche has always been a lying, philandering attention whore. Turd has always been corrupt, power-hungry politician. If someone still hasn’t realized these simple truths, your mini press release about the latest scandal isn’t going to suddenly bring clarity.
“But I’m helping!”
No, you’re not. There are few things in this world more divisive than presidential politics: it’s a personality cult; it’s an irrational obsession; it’s mental midgets bickering about whose click-bait is more clickable. Even if you could pull some sort of meaningful conversation from the midst of all this noise (unlikely), you’re still making it louder.
“There’s so much on the line!”
No, there’s not. Candidates never differ as much as they’d have us believe. The president is only one part of a larger administration, which only influences a small portion of new policy, which only accounts for a tiny faction of the Federal cluster-f*ck-erment, which only controls about 20% of the GDP. And the majority of human activity is neither political nor financial. Have you ever considered that the biggest #outrage here might actually be the over-hyped reality show that they foist upon us every 4 years? Do you really want to be its living, breathing, never-shutting-up publicity machine?
“This time it’s different!”
No, it’s not. Every presidential election provokes prophesies of doom and threats to invade Canada. And, yet: the Canadians have triumphantly held back the onslaught of Rush Limbaugh and Rachel Maddow worshippers; the Federal government is still predictably incompetent; and American quality of life continues to improve. Yes, the crap is piled higher this year, but you’re still sniffing the same porta-potty.
“Every vote counts!”
No, they don’t. In order for your vote to be truly consequential, you’d have to cast a tie-breaking vote in a state that ultimately either awarded or denied that coveted 270th delegate. Needless to say, this has never happened and probably never will. And if your own vote doesn’t really even “count,” why the h*ll are you so intent on manipulating someone else’s?
I get it. Everyone hates Douche, or Turd, or both. Everyone wants to show how principled, and insightful, and totally extraordinary they are. There are ways to act on this impulse and impress your fellow humans … but talking about presidential politics is not one of them … certainly not during the Douche-Turd-ity of 2016.
Tap your inner alcoholic and repeat the following: “god, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference.”
You cannot “raise awareness” or “organize” your way out of this election. You can organize your house. Have the courage to organize your house. Here’s a picture of my cabinet: impressive, no?