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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Victory: The Illusion That Leads To Heartbreak


So we have won, and I use the collective as opposed to the royal, like as in "we won" when your town's NFL franchise wins, but you can't afford the four hundred bucks it would cost to take a friend to the game. You, like me, sit at home with your friend, drink cheap beer, snack on cheap snacks and watch the game. In politics we make small donations, defend our candidate against ignorant attacks, write the odd letter to the editor and put a new post in your blog every once in a while. My political activist stage is in my past. I don't have the fire in my belly. Well there may be a fire in there somewhere, but the belly does such a good job of hiding the embers that I can't tell.

All I have to do is remember Rove's "Permanent Republican Majority" and that purges any thoughts of victory from my thoughts. Victory is so illusive in Democratic and democratic politics. The idea of true victory is a bit un-American if you think about it. Dictators can have the ability to have genuine victories. Burma's and North Korea's ruling generals both have had a perfect victory. In the messy reality of Western politics the next election is just around the corner, and none of your allies can be trusted absolutely. Before you revel in stepping on someone's face on your rise to power just remember that face, and think of the next time you may see it.

Only a person without ambition, and with no fear of death can afford to be ruthlessly blunt with the truth. Don't take that last sentence as permission to be a jerk.

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