On Wisconsin, and have fun, neighbors.

(Fueled by today’s comments at Democratic Underground, which are peppered throughout.)

I hope the people who voted for Walker yesterday because they “just don’t like recalls” can sleep well with their high and mighty principles, while their children’s schools are being gutted and when their employers cut their pay and benefits because there are no unions to stand up for them anymore.

People don’t get it, and they won’t grasp the political reality until it threatens them. Either they don’t pay attention to politics and think “all politicians are the same,” or they don’t pay attention to anything happening around them. Either way, they don’t fully appreciate the forces arrayed against them. The race to the bottom just keeps going on and on, and people aren’t fully aware that they are being screwed.

The people I don’t get are those who are fully politically aware, yet time after time vote against themselves and their own interests. Those politically aware folks must truly believe that they will be rich someday, and so they don’t want to vote for policies that would limit their (future) riches. To quote John Steinbeck, they see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires. They know exactly what’s going on, but just hope someday to be in the 1% they are protecting. It must be blind allegiance to ideology, because they really aren’t seeing any payoff in their own lives.

It seems there’s nothing anyone can do about such unrealistic expectations. But then Walker and the rest of the repubs come along and tell them that yes, their lives are bad, but the reason lies with the “bad union thugs” or “government workers” or “illegals” or “welfare queens” or whatever scary “other” they can single out. Divide and conquer: it works. Willfully ignorant people believe what they are spoon-fed on TV and will not do their own research, even if it leads to a better life for them.

I guess all I can say to Wisconsin is “good luck and enjoy.”

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