where will your vote go when you leave the booth?
We observed the 4th of July holiday yesterday by watching Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9/11." [I just can't imagine how anything traditionally celebratory could be appropriate just now.]
Because I haven't been tied up in a cellar for four years, I think I can say I did not learn anything new during those two hours, but when the film's chronological sequence reached the moment that the United States bombed Baghdad I just lost it.
My only thought then was that if we were being watched by a wrathful, Old Testament god he would have instantly crushed our nation for its selfishness, its stupidity and its cruelty. More privileged than any people which has ever enjoyed the bounty of this planet, we have no excuse for the evil we have unleashed upon others. [And no, since we have absolutely chosen ignorance (we have the media we want) there will be no absolution there.]
We are very lucky that old god isn't out there. It now appears that we're waking up and don't like what we have done. I really believe most of us will not vote for Bush in November, but I also firmly believe Bush will be declared winner of the election. They aren't going to let go.
How will this happen? Nothing has been done in Florida to repair the system responsible for that state's abominations in the 2000 election, and meanwhile the possibilities for mischief have expanded elsewhere. But the decisive assault to our voting rights is the introduction in many jurisdictions of electronic voting machines which leave absolutely no paper trail and whose programming remains secret to all but their large Republican-dominated corporate makers. Sophisticated push-button control of the ballot box: the dream of every modern tyranny.
Why are we trying to raise millions of dollars and raise up millions of people, if in the end the election can be fixed? Especially after what happened four years ago, why aren't we hearing about this horrible threat? Even the most energetic opponents of the Administration are not pointing out the danger. Other than to suggest the most cynical of possibilities, I don't have an explanation for that silence.
Because of his film's brilliance and because of its huge popular success, Michael Moore seems to have awakened his audience in time, and he should soon enjoy the highest honors available from a grateful nation. But I'm afraid he has one more job to do, and I say it is his because I cannot imagine anyone else who could get the voters' attention, anyone else who could save us from another, even bigger fix in November.
We're going to have to ask him to help, and we're also going to have to talk it up with anyone else who might make a difference.
Everything depends on it.
It's no longer enough just to pick the right candidate in the voting booth. We have keep our eyes on what happens afterwards.
[image from Dangerous Citizen]