Friday, November 5th, 2004
17 Reasons Not to Slit Your Wrists...
by Michael Moore
Ok, it sucks. Really sucks. But before you go and cash it all in, let's, in the words of Monty Python, “always look on the bright side of life!” There IS some good news from Tuesday's election.
Here are 17 reasons not to slit your wrists:
1. It is against the law for George W. Bush to run for president again.
2. Bush's victory was the NARROWEST win for a sitting president since Woodrow Wilson in 1916.
3. The only age group in which the majority voted for Kerry was young adults (Kerry: 54%, Bush: 44%), proving once again that your parents are always wrong and you should never listen to them.
4. In spite of Bush's win, the majority of Americans still think the country is headed in the wrong direction ( 56% ), think the war wasn't worth fighting ( 51% ), and don’t approve of the job George W. Bush is doing ( 52% ). (Note to foreigners: Don't try to figure this one out. It's an American thing, like Pop Tarts.)
5. The Republicans will not have a filibuster-proof 60-seat majority in the Senate. If the Democrats do their job, Bush won't be able to pack the Supreme Court with right-wing ideologues. Did I say "if the Democrats do their job?" Um, maybe better to scratch this one.
6. Michigan voted for Kerry! So did the entire Northeast, the birthplace of our democracy. So did 6 of the 8 Great Lakes States. And the whole West Coast! Plus Hawaii. Ok, that's a start. We've got most of the fresh water, all of Broadway, and Mt. St. Helens. We can dehydrate them or bury them in lava. And no more show tunes!
7. Once again we are reminded that the buckeye is a nut, and not just any old nut -- a poisonous nut. A great nation was felled by a poisonous nut. May Ohio State pay dearly this Saturday when it faces Michigan.
8. 88% of Bush's support came from white voters. In 50 years, America will no longer have a white majority. Hey, 50 years isn't such a long time! If you're ten years old and reading this, your golden years will be truly golden and you will be well cared for in your old age.
9. Gays, thanks to the ballot measures passed on Tuesday, cannot get married in 11 new states. Thank God. Just think of all those wedding gifts we won't have to buy now.
10. Five more African Americans were elected as members of Congress, including the return of Cynthia McKinney of Georgia. It's always good to have more blacks in there fighting for us and doing the job our candidates can't.
11. The CEO of Coors was defeated for Senate in Colorado. Drink up!
12. Admit it: We like the Bush twins and we don't want them to go away.
13. At the state legislative level, Democrats picked up a net of at least 3 chambers in Tuesday's elections. Of the 98 partisan-controlled state legislative chambers (house/assembly and senate), Democrats went into the 2004 elections in control of 44 chambers, Republicans controlled 53 chambers, and 1 chamber was tied. After Tuesday, Democrats now control 47 chambers, Republicans control 49 chambers, 1 chamber is tied and 1 chamber (Montana House) is still undecided.
14. Bush is now a lame duck president. He will have no greater moment than the one he's having this week. It's all downhill for him from here on out -- and, more significantly, he's just not going to want to do all the hard work that will be expected of him. It'll be like everyone's last month in 12th grade -- you've already made it, so it's party time! Perhaps he'll treat the next four years like a permanent Friday, spending even more time at the ranch or in Kennebunkport. And why shouldn't he? He's already proved his point, avenged his father and kicked our ass.
15. Should Bush decide to show up to work and take this country down a very dark road, it is also just as likely that either of the following two scenarios will happen: a) Now that he doesn't ever need to pander to the Christian conservatives again to get elected, someone may whisper in his ear that he should spend these last four years building "a legacy" so that history will render a kinder verdict on him and thus he will not push for too aggressive a right-wing agenda; or b) He will become so cocky and arrogant -- and thus, reckless -- that he will commit a blunder of such major proportions that even his own party will have to remove him from office.
16. There are nearly 300 million Americans -- 200 million of them of voting age. We only lost by three and a half million! That's not a landslide -- it means we're almost there. Imagine losing by 20 million. If you had 58 yards to go before you reached the goal line and then you barreled down 55 of those yards, would you stop on the three yard line, pick up the ball and go home crying -- especially when you get to start the next down on the three yard line? Of course not! Buck up! Have hope! More sports analogies are coming!!!
17. Finally and most importantly, over 55 million Americans voted for the candidate dubbed "The #1 Liberal in the Senate." That's more than the total number of voters who voted for either Reagan, Bush I, Clinton or Gore. Again, more people voted for Kerry than Reagan. If the media are looking for a trend it should be this -- that so many Americans were, for the first time since Kennedy, willing to vote for an out-and-out liberal. The country has always been filled with evangelicals -- that is not news. What IS news is that so many people have shifted toward a Massachusetts liberal. In fact, that's BIG news. Which means, don't expect the mainstream media, the ones who brought you the Iraq War, to ever report the real truth about November 2, 2004. In fact, it's better that they don't. We'll need the element of surprise in 2008.
Feeling better? I hope so. As my friend Mort wrote me yesterday, "My Romanian grandfather used to say to me, 'Remember, Morton, this is such a wonderful country -- it doesn't even need a president!'"
But it needs us. Rest up, I'll write you again tomorrow.
Empty space voted for Bush -- that's interesting. Bonnie (my wife, for those of you who I don't know but am nonetheless polluting your mailboxes) suggested that people who live in close quarters with others have found it necessary and good to be tolerant and get along with one another. Perhaps they have also learned that their happiness and well being depends in some part on the happiness and well being of their neighbors. Strangely, I think those were supposed to be the small town values that people are seeking when they flee the cities to move to rural or gated suburban areas, aren't they?
I spent some time in Hong Kong back in 2000 when I was working for a company that is based there. Talk about crowded! There is absolutely no room for all of those people to drive, so they mostly travel by walking and taking the MTR train system. Sidewalks are typically full from storefront to curb, and the trains are standing room only, but everything moves.
During my six weeks there, I commuted to work in the same manner, about 40-60 minutes round trip each day. What struck me about that city was how everyone seemed to move harmoniously, as though there was some mass physical consciousness that caused them to move in an efficient concert of motion. It's not that they are more polite -- step in front of an oncoming taxi and you'll get two beeps of the horn but no brake lights. And it's not that everyone moves along at the same pace -- there are old people with carts of stuff, and confused tourists (like me), and delivery trucks with boxes stacked on the sidewalk, and people in a big hurry, and people in no apparent hurry at all. And yet it all works. I think that years of conditioning in those crowded conditions have taught people that it is in their most selfish self interest to get along with everyone and everything around them, and that's the way to get ahead in their world.
So that's one of the reasons why I think the blue votes were in the most populous areas, and the red votes were in the empty spaces.
On the otherhand, paraphrasing Jon Stewart, people with boats voted blue and the landlubbers voted red.
Mute Film Presents... Film Night in London
On Saturday 20th November, Mute and The Grey Area of Mute will be screening rare and unseen film and live footage at The Ritzy in Brixton, South London for this, the first in a new series of film nights.
Mute Film Presents... will be an exclusive chance to see incredible footage from the Mute Films archive and for the November screening the programme will feature:
* Unseen live footage of the Virgin Prunes from the Haçienda, Manchester from 30th November 1983
* 30 selected one minute movies from The Residents' brand new Commercial Album DVD
* 30 minutes of rarely seen promotional videos by Laibach
Future Mute Film Presents... will screen material from artists ranging from Can to Virgin Prunes and including Cabaret Voltaire, Throbbing Gristle, Residents, SFT and Einstürzende Neubauten, amongst others.
MUTE FILMS PRESENT...
The Ritzy Cinema (Cinema 2)
London SW2 1JG
Box Office: 020 7733 2229
Tickets: £5.00, Friends & Concessions £4.00 Senior Citizens £3.00, Children (up to age 14) £3.50
MUTE FILM PRESENTS...
SATURDAY 20th NOVEMBER 2004 - 11.30pm
Knitting Factory Los Angeles
Sunn 0))), Earth, The Hidden Hand, John Wiese
Price: ADV $11.00 | DOS $13.00
Date: Thu, Nov 18 // Start Time: 7:30 PM
Wiese will be performing with SUNN O))) in LA
Independent San Francisco
SUNN O))), OM (Rhythm section of SLEEP) • Hidden Hand (feat. Wino)
Sunday November 21 //Doors 7 PM | Show 8 PM
Tickets $11 Adv | $13 Door
Gerritt & Nate Carson will be performing with SUNN O))) in SF
Hail & Greets to Dave & Robin for the good times. Cheers Alfred, Cyril, Kyle & Asa.
MORTIIS Jackolantern uber alles!
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