WD Jenkins: Yes, Virginia, There is a Bright Side
Yes, Virginia, There is a Bright Side
By W. David Jenkins III
Democrats and much of the world community have been shaking their heads in disbelief the last few days while they try to make some kind of sense out of what happened here the other day. There are rumblings of major discrepancies between exit poll numbers and actual vote totals. There is speculation that those touch screen voting machines "did their job" and delivered Ohio 's electoral votes to Bush just as the guy who makes those machines had pledged he was determined to do. The thing is there's simply no way to know. But many people realize that nothing makes much sense right now.
There is a palpable air of apprehension in our world right now. While that idiot big mouth in the next cubicle is gloating over how awesome Bush is going to be and what a bunch of losers everybody else is, others are searching for any ray of hope in all of this foreboding. And, although things look pretty bleak right now, history shows us that hope is not as elusive as we might think. But it sure does feel that way, doesn't it?
For those of you old enough to remember, this point in time feels much like 1972 for many. Nixon was given a mandate in a landslide election back then and many felt like it was the end of the world. America was stuck in another quagmire at the time and there was a level of distrust and loathing directed at the Nixon administration. The country was divided over a disastrous war and a cultural upheaval that would forever change America and, obviously, that time in our history failed to teach many the lessons that should've been learned from that era. I'm certain that the next four years will prove me correct in my assumption that history will repeat itself.
America is faced with another four years with an administration more reckless and destructive than any other. The progress made in our short history will be threatened by a small group of ideologues who now realize that they have a very short time to leave their mark on this country - more than they already have. Social programs like Medicare and Social Security have been added to the Endangered Species list. Civil rights and women's rights stand to be reversed with the likely appointments of three, maybe four, Supreme Court justices. Iraq will become more of a burden as we find ourselves waving goodbye to more and more members of the "coalition." In fact, Hungary has announced it will remove its non-combat troops next March. And the great wedge which has divided this country for four years will continue to grow.
After listening to more than enough of Washington Journal callers announcing how Democrats should just "move to France and join al Qaeda" I decided to see how the rest of the world - outside the CNN/MSNBC bubble - were reacting to the news. And you know what? They're on our side. The general consensus is that it'll be just four more years of Bush against the world. In other words, we' re not alone. Even though Bush may feel he has finally won some sort of mandate, he is still faced with the same adversaries as he was on November 1 - and that would be you and me and the world community against the gang that has finally been given enough rope to hang themselves - much like Richard Nixon did.
I know I stated that there is a bright side to this predicament we find ourselves in, but there is a price tag. It consists of sacrifice and empowerment and the willingness not to give up - especially now. And I promise it's not going to be easy because we are at a point where the neo-conservative movement has arrived at or near its apex. Things are going to get much worse before we can begin to make things right again so allow me to highlight the bad stuff first.
Where sacrifice is concerned, we are going to have to come to grips with the fact that many, many more American soldiers and Iraqi citizens are going to die or become maimed and disfigured before Bush admits that he screwed up the whole invasion thing beyond repair or anything that can be described as victory. More and more Americans will fall through the cracks made wider by this administration, losing their jobs, their health coverage and their hope.
The additional sections to the 9/11 and Iraq intelligence reports which address individual responsibility to those who let us down that September day and those who lied us into an illegal invasion, due to be released after the election for "bi-partisan reasons," will be filed away and hidden by Porter Goss in the most blatant un-American cover up effort ever in our history.
To be sure, in the first few days Bush will speak of reaching across to everyone and trying to heal the divide - but the last four years have shown us that it is only lip service and if we are not with the president, then we are with the terrorists. Somewhere out there, Osama bin Laden is celebrating the reality that enough Americans bought the lie perpetuated by this administration that has enabled them another four years. To be sure, Bush's return to the White House must be music to the ears of those who recruit for al Qaeda. Our dangerous world just got worse.
Then there is the unknown future of Colin Powell, Condi Rice and John Ashcroft - three major figures who may not figure in the next Bush administration. They have all made noise about not sticking around for a second term and their departure will cause unrest in Bush's inner circle. It also sheds light on the fact that whether or not we agreed with what these people said or did, they can no longer deal with being a part of this administration. And that says a lot. Lest we forget, there are still investigations regarding outing CIA operatives, manufactured intelligence, civil rights abuses, the torture of war prisoners and the flagrant disregard for the Geneva Conventions and other corruption, which is basically the calling card for this administration. Who could blame anyone for wanting to get as far away from Bush and Cheney as possible?
But we must remember that there are those who still stand with us. There are still those Republicans like Lincoln Chaffee, Chuck Hagel, Susan Collins, John McCain and Olympia Snowe, among other prominent and influential conservatives, who will find themselves in a position to confront this administration in order to preserve the very principles that their party used to stand for. These conservatives were speaking out prior to November 2 and they're still there and they and others like them still see Bush as something serious, a blotch on true conservative principle, which needs to be confronted if not harnessed and ultimately dealt with. We need to remember that they too are dealing with four more years that they'd most likely rather not deal with.
And we must also realize that the world hasn't changed. One lady from England being interviewed on the NWI (News World International) channel stated that Bush's return to the White House changed nothing. It is still the world against - not America - but George W. Bush. Sure, we will have to suffer the consequence of his actions, but this country is strong. You and I are strong and I cannot think of anything worse than being defeated by the likes of the spoiled little bastard from Crawford , Texas …..and I won't be. And neither will you.
Now more than ever, the Republicans are in charge. They have their mandate of fear and propaganda. There are those, like the idiot in the next cubicle, who will support Bush the most while benefiting the least and, unfortunately, it will probably take four more years of this administration for these people to finally realize that you and I were right. But we cannot throw up our hands and quit. America needs us now more than it ever has.
Think about it. Four more years of Bush and his policies will undoubtedly insure that he will go down in history as the worst president ever. We must remain strong and aware. We must continue to defend this country against the impending theocracy that Bush would have America become. We must continue to speak up, speak out and speak loud. We must keep the specter of Nixon alive in our minds in order to remind us that evil leaders will eventually fall by their own means - all we must do is keep up pressure and give them space and they will collapse by their own corrupt hand. We must do whatever is necessary to reassure the world community that America is not George W. Bush. We must let them see the numbers, the masses that crave to have this country back to what it once stood for - even in the face of those leaders who would gladly undue our foundations as long as it benefited them in their pursuit of their perverse and misguided goals.
The return of Bush to the White House, believe it or not, signals the beginning of the end of the neo-conservative movement. America will be beaten and bloodied in the process but we can make their demise a reality. We've been able to survive the first four failed years - we can still make it. We'll just keep handing them enough rope to hang themselves. And they will.
All America has to do is survive. And we will. Just hang in there.
History is on our side.