Archive for October, 2008

the world, the french and the u.s. presidential election – or, why i don’t talk about politics

First off, I’m sorry I’ve been gone half the summer. I’ve had Burning Man, O’ahu and East Coast posts on the back burner; I’ll retroactively post them in the next week or two and will turn to my regularly scheduled itinerary from then on.

This post, however, is mostly a rant. It’s about why I don’t like talking about politics— or following it too closely, for that matter.

For one, I’m a flaming liberal— pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, pro-alternative energy, pro-universal health care, pro-globalism, anti-war, anti-oil, anti-tax raises for everyone but the rich. That’s all well and good at Stanford, but my family would likely have been a bunch of super-Catholic conservatives if my parents weren’t going to hell for producing bastard children. As I pointed out when I was in Southeast Asia, I apparently cannot and should not talk about religion or politics with anyone Filipino. It just stresses me out way too much.

I guess it could have been worse, though. My father is still a Philippine citizen, but otherwise he’d vote for Obama, and he still engages me in debate from time to time like he did when I was younger. My grandparents are voting for Obama thanks to his fantastic elocution. My mother is going to vote for McCain, partly because his illegal immigration policies are more lax than Obama’s, but partly because, in her words, “The American president shouldn’t have the last name ‘Obama'”. I’m probably not going to be talking to her during the month of December.

Anyway, I digress. The second reason I don’t like following politics is because I don’t see the point in getting so angry about shit all the time. I watched the Palin-Biden debate yesterday and ended up throwing a shoe at the screen when I couldn’t take Palin’s ass-kissing and issue-skirting any longer. That was fun because my house was watching the debate like a bunch of frat boys would watch a football game– drunkenly and belligerently, yelling things at the giant projector screen.

But after the debate, a couple of people in my house were ranting to anyone within earshot about how Palin is an idiot. Of course she is, and the majority of the developed world agrees with you. There’s no point in running your mouth off about it in the safety of a liberal hotbed with people who aren’t experts on the issues, so if you really give a shit, do something tangible elsewhere. Join the Stanford Democrats. Lobby your goddamn representatives. Team up with people who feel angry too. I’m just not one of them.

I’ve taken to politics like the French take to life. With a French accent: “Yes, maybe parts of it suck, but ‘o ze fuck cares? Ze people who care can complain. I ‘ave my sirty-five hour workweek and five weeks of ‘olidays. I do not geeve a sheet.”

That said, I completely understand the French view of the U.S. presidential and vice-presidential candidates this year. The economy is shot to shit and there’s a nonzero chance that Palin could end up in the presidency. Ah, les americains, those stupid fucking idiots.



This is a blog of things place-related, by a cash-strapped Stanford grad who's lived in various places and writes about life. She's currently looking for a job in Manhattan or the Bay Area.

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