Politics As Usual

I try not to pay too much attention to politics. I tend to dislike the sort of person who is attracted to such a career and the intellectual content of most political statements is low.

I’m with Henry Thoreau on this issue — here’s a quote I’ve always liked from his essay Life Without Principle:

Those things which now most engage the attention of men, as politics and the daily routine, are, it is true, vital functions of human society, but should be unconsciously performed, like the corresponding functions of the physical body. They are infrahuman, a kind of vegetation. I sometimes awake to a half-consciousness of them going on about me, as a man may become conscious of some of the processes of digestion in a morbid state, and so have the dyspepsia, as it is called. It is as if a thinker submitted himself to be rasped by the great gizzard of creation. Politics is, as it were, the gizzard of society, full of grit and gravel, and the two political parties are its two opposite halves- sometimes split into quarters, it may be, which grind on each other. Not only individuals, but states, have thus a confirmed dyspepsia, which expresses itself, you can imagine by what sort of eloquence. Thus our life is not altogether a forgetting, but also, alas! to a great extent, a remembering, of that which we should never have been conscious of, certainly not in our waking hours. Why should we not meet, not always as dyspeptics, to tell our bad dreams, but sometimes as eupeptics, to congratulate each other on the ever-glorious morning? I do not make an exorbitant demand, surely.

It’s hard to avoid politics while cruising the ‘net, though. Here’s an interesting “liberal” graphic which I happened across:

Larry

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Politics As Usual

  1. Whyi does “liberal” apply here? May it’s the right boasting / celebrating / congratulating themselves!! Who helps those who help themselves, anyway?

  2. Joan

    Well, I had a longer post all ready to go, when my son showed up for a short visit. Natch, I ‘disappeared’ it when I was trying to show him something else on the net. So..you lucky people are partially spared. Nevertheless…the chart says it all. Sadly, we will now see the election of more conservative Republicans and even worse catastrophes will ensue unless Obama and the remaining Dem’s grow some collective spines, or unless the Reps finally realize that without an equitable tax and some major military cuts abroad, there will not be enough money left in any domestic pot to cut.
    I can see neither of these things happening. Hey, It’s not the defecit…it’s the economy, stupid.
    Here’s Paul Krugman. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/12/opinion/the-hijacked-crisis.html?_r=1&ref=opinion

    Rant at him in your replies. I’m not an economist. I’m just a broke senior citizen. .

    P.S. I had a Kafkaesque moment last night listening to those in the Republican candidates debate rail against the wars in Iraq, Afganistan, et. all . Aren’t these the same people who were waving the flag around and calling all the Dems traitors awhile back for the same suggestions?

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