Tuesday, August 08, 2006

the Revolution starts now

Today's the day, the Connecticut primary between Joe Lieberman and Ned Lamont. The netroots have thrown their full weight behind Lamont, and will undoubtedly face heaps of scorn no matter what happens: they'll be "inquisitors" purging all moderation from the Democratic party if Lamont wins, or ineffectual losers if Lieberman does.

Of course, both are already demonstrably false, but that's never been a factor in editorial writing before, eh?

Speaking of editorializing, the New York Daily News this morning broke with journalistic tradition, which says you can't publish election-affecting articles within 2 days of the election, and released a hit piece on Lamont this morning. Classy. I guess it's ok if you're backing the guy the right wing supports.

I personally am pretty nervous about the election. I really do want Lamont to win it, and I think it's important for the party that he win it. At the same time, I'm nervous about the vitriol that's sure to ensue either way. I'm nervous about the possibility of being wrong (seeing as I called this thing for Lamont a couple of days ago). It wouldn't be the first time by any stretch of the imagination, but still...

In a way though, I'm glad to be nervous, because it means that I believe in something. Too often, we as a society deride the "starry-eyed idealists," the people who dare to care, and revere snarkily apathetic types like Trey Parker and Matt Stone, or the writers of Wonkette. Reporters and editorialists try to maintain such a facade (though, of course, they tend to be quite ideological), pretending to stand above the fray, eyes half-closed and mouth contorted in the smirk that screams, "I'm witty, really!", trying to tap into that natural admiration people always felt for the rebellious kid with his feet up in the back row in high school (and what was he rebelling against? no one ever asked, no one ever even expected him to know. It was irrelevant).

Personally, I find such an attitude pathetic. Apathy is merely a defense mechanism, a way of avoiding scorn or failure for those too weak-kneed to endure it. It doesn't take any courage or intellectual acuity to stand back and poke holes in other people's candidates or ideas. Anyone can do that. It's standing up for something that's the hard part.

And on days like today, facing the possibility of defeat, it's hard to stand up and be counted among the believers. And yet, exhilerating.


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