The American people are natural dreamers. We are idealists by default, which stems from the way in which our country was founded, the legacy of which has continued through the past 230 years, highlighted by several great shining triumphs. We rose from a disorganized amalgamation of 13 colonies to evolve into the unchallenged Superpower that we are today in grandiose fashion. We’ve gone to the moon, saved the world from fascism, and broken down social, racial, and gender related barriers which have truly started to deliver on the promise to provide “liberty and justice for all.” These are powerful ideals, and a powerful idea from the right person at the right time is what keeps societies in check.
Because the American people are idealists at heart, they can be (and have been) fooled into voting with their hearts instead of their heads, but I still believe in their ability to critically think. No matter who we are, no matter where in the country we live, I think that we can all agree that the country has fallen into a rut. The electoral process is a sequence of fundraisers, stump speeches, and television interviews, one after another, after another. The system is rigged, and the little people get left out. Maybe we should start looking at little politicians.
Regardless of who wins either of the two major party’s nomination, you can be sure it will be an upper class, property owning individual who has not lived in the Middle Class for the majority of their life. This is a problem. The country is being run by those who own all of us.
The Democrats have fallen into a bad pattern, and the country has followed due to a lack of leadership, on both sides. What the Democrats have done is to adapt Republican Electoral Techniques to try and siphon off just enough votes from the GOP to skirt out a win in the General Election. (I like Hillary to a point, but if she triangulates one more time I’m going to vomit!) That doesn’t work. We’ve already proven it twice.
This is not a business as usual election cycle. I’ve stumped for Hillary for 10 months, but I left her after the debate in Philly. She’s proven herself to be no break from tradition, even though she’s a woman. She’s a Clinton, and I feel like I am watching the “Bush/Clinton” legacy march on, and I think the country is suffering from a lack of new ideas, and the people are being suffocated by a divisive stagnation in our politics.
Enter my little politician, Dennis Kucinich. Unlike with any other Democratic candidate for President, if you ask any party member, country-wide, what they think of Kucinich (and if they are up to date on the issues and positions) you will inevitably hear, “I love Dennis Kucinich!…he could just never get elected.”
I reject that notion. If you voted for him, he could get elected! The 2008 Election has been weighted down by the same monied groups and interests that have dogged every election in the past 20 years, and I will be completely baffled if the public goes along with ‘business as usual.’ However, if the public votes as they usually do, they deserve what they get. That is the nature of a democracy.
This is when I usually sit my friends down on the couch to ask the big “What If?” question. What if Kucinich was President?…without worrying about anything else. What if Hillary or Barack was President? Who best represents the Democratic platform? Who stands for Not-For-Profit Universal Health Care, truly ending the Iraq War, redistributing burden of the tax code from the poor to the rich, etc? Kucinich. He is the only candidate running who voted against the war, voted against the Patriot Act, and consistently voted against funding the war each and every time. He’s mainstream, he votes like he says he will, he’s married to a hot young red head, and he stands on principle – not politics – which is clear to anyone who has seen him speak. Somehow, candidates like him never get through to the public. He’s too much like us.
Electability. I hate that word. From the moment it is uttered it detracts from the substance of an argument by proposing that a ‘real’ candidate for President has to look a certain way, speak a certain way, and pander to just the right people, or it’s not possible. That is not what America was supposed to be about. Call me an idealist, but I miss idealism in America.
America is sick of pandering. America wants a straight talker, the real deal. We are tired of answers that are filtered through focus groups, which in the end only serve to dumb down the public to a 4th grade level. The rest of the world has been playing chess for the last 25 years, while we’ve been content to play checkers, and America has fallen behind because of it.
In a race filled with Titans like Hillary, Obama, and Rudy, someone like Kucinich gets lost in the fray. He’s a short, white man with pointy ears. Who more unlikely, especially in 2008, to be considered for the nomination of his party? We’ve become so obsessed with making history in this election (by electing a woman or a black man) that we’ve overlooked the other, more pragmatic candidates in the process. Does anyone really think Hillary Clinton can unite the country?
Kucinich has a political style that I liken to the politics of hobbits: direct, honest, idealistic, and hopeful, and he gets a huge response on stage. People like hobbits, and they sell, so there’s a lot of untapped potential here. The PEOPLE like him. The electoral process does not. He’s a man who doesn’t accept the limitations of what can be achieved, which so many of us accept without a second thought. He’s someone who isn’t interested in political power like Hillary, someone who has the experience Obama lacks, and he’s a man who actually has a positive message….unlike Edwards. He’s also the most rational one of the bunch. Don’t take my words alone though, check him out for yourself.
People have said that they want a President who can get the two divided sides of America to work together again, which is why Obama’s candidacy has taken off so quickly, and who better to get the people to work together than a man without any personal political greed? No one could say that Kucinich is owned by anyone other than himself. To me…that’s the most important quality a leader can have. Independence.
Above all I’m an idealist during the Primary, and a pragmatist in the General. I realize that Kucinich doesn’t have a statistical chance, but I still believe he’s the best of the lot. Once my options shrink, and I’m forced to choose between Hillary and Obama, I will choose Obama. I obviously do not control the political ebb and flow of the country, but I choose, for me, to give change a real chance. Taking money from defense companies and the insurance industry is no way to represent anything new, and the American people have been given the heavy choice to either sell out once again, or reach for a better future by rejecting the limitations of Washington. My only fear is that this country has become so conditioned to selling out that my words may fall upon deaf ears, but I can hope…since that is the theme of the 2008 Election, in which a short white male with pointy ears has no chance, even if he could be the best choice.