Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Election Blues

The day is here. A Nation awaits the reflection of its own confidence. Its a treat to be in the US at these times.I remember the last election clearly. I was in my graduate class (Operating Systems) at the time the calling of votes was being done. My instructor(whose looks and sounds like the school counselor in South Park) asked if we had any questions.Lost in my own world. I asked "When will the class be dismissed ?". He politely gave me a chance to correct myself by saying "Excuse me..!". I said its fun to be outside the class at that point of time. I came away chuckling noting that Gore has bagged Florida. I took the usual CUE bus enroute to home and saw that Fox News had this sensational turnaround in the calling of Florida.The rest is a mess and supposedly gonna go down in History books as one of the most controversial.

Hailing from India(where the irregularities in the electoral system seem very commonplace )but I was shocked to see the fury,agony and disappointment of people around me. Now I see that spirit being rejuvenated albeit in different tones. Its almost festive feeling out here.

I have an interesting workplace where both of colleagues are of different political inclinations(which usually means only 2 in US unline Europe/India). I have worked with him and have my own personal bonds with each of them differently. The proper study of mankind is man and hence the proper study of a political party would be its own adherents.

Its tough to calibrate the either political philosophies just by watching my co-workers alone. One is a funny, chruch-going, chivalrous, good boy whereas the other is a little electic mix of liberal ideas, flexibility and a healthy disregard for religion. For the sake of convenience lets name them X and Y. I am just conducting a thought experiment here to answer the question "If I had the power to vote, which one would I choose nased on my interactions with both?" . The reason I dont have a vote is because I am classified as a Non Resident Alien.(Before you jump to conclusions that I might be a resident of Mars, I have verified the interepretation to be claiming that the designation means a inhabitant of this third rock of the sun but being born in a different geographical location than the US.)

I frequently enjoy chat with X whereas Y hardly speaks.But whatever little he speaks he tries to be witty.X hates bigotry of any kind whereas Y thinks it is healthy to have some kind of bigotry.X has flexible limits of tolerance whereas Y does not but at the same time wont tell it on your face. I can go on and bore you with details but let me stop here.

The question is not whom you like better but rather transforms itself into "Who sucks less?"
because either way you are gonna get some and lose some. I am just confused. So it boiled down to this. Since I couldnt decide between the two contenders, I was trying to choose from Party Symbols.I like Elephants relative to Donkeys.But then I like color "Blue" relative to "Red"..So you see I am a healthy centrist who likes to see an Independent (with a liberal or conservative slant) rather than somebody who just toes their party lines.Just to satisfy me The US has to create a new party (I say revive the Federalists!) if they have to have my vote.But then that might exactly be the reason I dont have a vote.Hmmm..I'll go watch TV then.

ps : Finally realised this bit of truth.No point pondering on the current crop of leaders.There is a generation out there who are just playing video games and watching TV and spending more time at home than outside doing apparently boring but safe stuff.This generation thinks that a college is a place where guys hook up with chicks. The scary part is one of them is going to lead the nation in the future.(It doesnt matter India or US...)


Anonymous said...

Hush! Hush!
It's Bush
Is n't that what a democracy is
Where your vote doesn't matter
But your fears does
Needless to say, I am happy
Just that my vote was not uncounted
Only I was uncounted.

-The usual anonym

Ekta said...

Hey ,
Clnt help commenting when I read your blog coz was noticing exactly the same thing at my workplace about the US elections.

Its almost like its not two people contesting but the whole world taking this as an opportunity to figure out what are their philosophies!..and half of them just follow what the "seems to be in the air" without having a clue on what their supporting!

Anonymous said...

What happens to those few reasonable dissenters, when a republic gets the kind of leadership it
Being part of a mean-spirited, selfish, egocentric, self-serving, ugly America, what do we do when the country gets just who it wants, and our decency and social caring are collateral damage in the process?
I weep (but somewhere, deep down inside, is a decidedly unchristian gnashing of teeth and burning anger; diffused, undifferentiated, and
unfocused; but - heaven help me - there and almost lethal).
When did decent, caring Americans fall into the minority? Are those who are reasonable condemned to be expatriates in our own land?

Paddy said...

Thank you guys for taking the time to respond on this issue.All I can say is recollect the quote from Joseph Heller "It is neither possible nor neccesary to educate those who do not question.."

[Ekta] Good Observation.Reminded me that it takes an earthquake for people to get interested in geology!