Well it’s time to vote again. And I’m not very excited about it.
It’s just that I’ve been disappointed by politicians so many, many times. I have trouble thinking positive thoughts about any of them and finding the motivation to trudge up to the voting place. Once again.
Back when I was a a very small child Harry Truman was president. He was my first big disappointment because he was not my mother. Back then if you were not my mother you were a big disappointment. Even Dad fell in this category. If you did not have a bottle in your hand tuned to the right temperature you might as well forget about it.
Then, of course, came Eisenhower. He was a big disappointment because he picked Nixon to be his VP. And I hated Dick even as a small child. I could tell he hated me too.
After Ike there was JFK. I thought I liked him for awhile but then he started being mean to Marilyn. And I liked her more than I liked him. So that was a big disappointment.
After JFK left us there was Johnson. I actually had a really good reason to dislike LBJ. He was determined to send me to a jungle half way around the world for no particularly good reason. I was afraid of snakes and other creatures of the jungles. So he had to go.
Next came Dick again. He was back and I was not happy. I could tell he was lying every time because his lips were moving. He left abruptly and we had a party. It was the first of many.
Gerald Ford was next and I thought I might have finally found a politician I could like. But then he kept falling down for no apparent reason. One of the Manson family took a few shots at him one time and he had to duck but most of the time he was just clumsy. I was still very young and needed a role model I could look up to. Ford was not the guy for the job.
After that we had Jimmy Carter. I thought he might be the one for a short while. And then he tried unsuccessfully to beat a rabbit to death with his boat paddle. This led to some questioning on my part of his capabilities as Commander In Chief. But the clincher was when he made some derogatory statements about Playboy Magazine. He was dead to me after those remarks.
About the time I reached maturity of some sort Ronald Reagan became president. I tried once again to have an open mind and like the guy. Lots of people seemed to like him. But then he made some comments into an open mike about bombing the Soviet Union before nightfall. He was smiling about it and I suddenly remembered all the movies I had seen about WW Three and nuclear radiation. I actually started liking all the other presidents I had known a little more at that moment.
But they were gone. And so I waited for the next one. George Bush senior. He liked to say “Read my lips no new taxes” but I had been down this road with Nixon years earlier and so I heard ” Read my lips because when they move I’m lying”. And so it turned out to be.
The next one in line was Bill Clinton. I really enjoyed Bill for awhile. He helped me to understand the meaning of the word “is” a great deal better. And he was always acting like there were more important things in the world than being president. Like training interns for example. Or making sure McDonalds didn’t go out of business. I liked Bill but Hillary scared me much like the inhabitants of a distant jungle. And she seemed to be the one in charge much of the time. She was a co-president and I didn’t like her. So the streak remained alive.
After Bill was George Bush junior. He was an affable guy and I was open to liking him for awhile. But then, one day, he fell off his couch and almost died while eating a pretzel. I started having flashbacks of Gerald Ford soon after and was unable to get on board with Bush the younger.
And finally there was (and is) Barack Obama. I started liking him when he beat Hillary Clinton in the primaries. At least we wouldn’t have to go down that road. But then he threw out a pitch at a baseball game and it went off towards the dugout. It never came close to the catcher. I was thinking that there’s something wrong here.
He still has a couple of years left in his first term so I’m not going to close the book on him yet. He has a lot of people mad at him from the left and the right. So he may actually succeed in uniting the country like it never has been in my lifetime. Or anyone’s lifetime.
United in its opposition to Barack Obama.
So I’m having trouble getting it together to vote for one more guy or girl politician. They all seem to disappoint in the end. But at least they have all (so far) ultimately done something very pleasing to many of us.
Eventually they have all gone away.