“I’m so bored. I hate my life.” - Britney Spears

Das Langweilige ist interessant geworden, weil das Interessante angefangen hat langweilig zu werden. – Thomas Mann

"Never for money/always for love" - The Talking Heads

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

the fall of the house of LI

I can feel, as I type this, the wind creaking in the shingles, the moon staring malevolently down, and the curse of the ancient house of UFOB creeping into the LI office like the mummy’s last cough. Because tonight, well, we went to the caucus, we v-v-voted for Obama, and we even signed up to be an alternate delegate to the county convention. Oh no, I see the fatal shadow of the raven on the wall!

So, we’ve cast ourselves into the whole shilly shally of White House Idol. The convention was held at the middle school a couple of blocks from here. About five hundred people showed up, including my worst enemy in the world. We nodded at each other – the WEIW and I no longer threaten bodily harm to each other. The flames have been banked. About 425 Obama people sat on one side of the room, and the rest were Clinton supporters on the other side. I was with the group that encompassed the cool young college crowd and the prosperous homeowners whose housing prices have regularly increased 25 percent a year in my Tarrytown neighborhood. I was staring at the aggrieved Clintonites. They were chunkier, less lively, and even those who did seem to be well employed seemed shabbier. They were obviously my people. This, I admit, has puzzled me through the last four months – my peckerwood genes tell me that Hillary has a lock on the vote of people like me: the losers. The through the cracks folks. To join the winning side makes me feel a bit like… a traitor.

Afterwards, I talked with a couple of Clintonites. Two women in their mid to late thirties who had this bearing I always respect, that down to earth, healthy, outrage outworn, lefty attitude. They didn’t say a lot – a young Obama precinct captain was bantering with them, and couldn’t resist asking whether Clinton didn’t seem to dance around answers during the debates. They didn’t think so. I didn’t ask, why did your candidate sign up for the war – because I doubt these two women were for the war, and they would have had to come up with some bs for it, and that would simply be painful. Oh well, it will be a slow end.

However, although the allure of the Clinton side was powerful, it was, of course, ultimately the Clinton side. As in Hillary Clinton. As in all the old shit. So I was there as the caucusers dwindled down to sixty or so, signed on as an alternate delegate for reasons I don’t understand, and went home.


Brian said...

No! Even when I can't understand what the hell you are talking about, I always read LI! Where oh where has Mr. Scruggs gone?

roger said...

Brian, you would have been torn yourself, though you do think of H.C. as a sort of Elizabeth Bathory figure, bathing in the blood of ten thousand Iraqis, to see this group of Clintonites, weary, unhappy, but willing to suck it up for their candidate. A crowd that cared about health care policy and especially about electing the first woman president. And the over the top sexism of the last two weeks has made me very sympathetic to that - re the insane warmongering Washington Post's latest salvo, women are stoopid - oh, we are just jokin'! I'm fed up with that shit.

Anyway, no cheering from them, as us Obama-ites gave vent to several Texas style yells. A couple of which might have come out of my mouth. I admit that, unlike the stalwart intellectual I like to play on this site, I'm easily influenced in face to face conversation by, uh, almost anybody who wants to make the effort. Luckily, few do! So I could have been tempted to the Clintonite dream except - the dream just can't be hilary clinton. That has to be the wrong dream! Wake me up, operator!

northanger said...



Chuckie K said...

Sad to have no choice. When I was around, Hyde Park went for Jesse Jackson. ddin't seem like much of a choice then. Compared to this year ...

roger said...

Ah, choices. My notion about what works, politically, has certainly been shaken up by the last eight years. But I still believe that politics comes out of a movement, not an election campaign. The people you chose are your favorite enemies - presidents and senators who will bend to whatever manifestation of the popular will emerges in the masses.

One of the excellent things about the caucus was the unaccustomed number of people that came to it. Most people confine "politics" to "elections", but who knows - out of that group, maybe some can be chiseled off for movements, like against war, or for immigrant rights, etc., etc.

So I take White House Idol with a grain of salt.

Brian said...

sadly, don't you think more of the "chiseling" will be for nasty ends-for Minutemen rallies, and religious end times nuttery and the like? Particularly if the economy crashes big time.

But I always take the gloomy view. :)

roger said...

Actually, the biggest mass movement last year was the surprising numbers showing up for pro-immigrant demos.

Now, the media will always concentrate on any movement heavy in disgruntled white men. Because the media is heavily seasoned with disgruntled white men. But what the media emphasizes, and what is real, are two different things.