November 4, 2016

To My Daughter on the Occaision of the Election

Ok. Hi. You flatter me by asking. Thank you. That 10% to 35% thing is terrifying, especially considering the meta-variability or uncertainty between 10 and 35. I resent the hell out of not being permitted to vote for the candidate of my choice. Polls, yes, but the voters have never seen these choices. Hope nothing destabilizing happens globally or nationally ‘til after Tuesday. But. These matter are unprecedented in my lifetime. There is a tiny possibility that differential popular voting vs. electoral college will be technically meaningful, but do you think it is symbolically meaningful to have the popular vote as high on the left as high as possible this time? Sometimes results that express DISATISFACTION might (have been) be good. (That is not at all the point of voting third for me. For me, it is an outrage and a travesty to be compelled (or shamed) to do otherwise. I just about can’t.) But exactly that repulsion has utterly degraded our public life, and totally contaminated this election. The dissatisfaction with the truth and the ginned-up polarization of everything has done indescribable, permanent, damage. Maybe sometimes coming down strongly on the dipole of collective morality and justice is important, as not doing so is damaging to one’s own mental health and morality. But this time…is it is essential? Not just pragmatically but as a rejection of how repugnant we (they) have become? That other pole of reactionary, racist xenophobic hatred is so strong at this time, that we are in civilizational peril. I love to state things in extremes, but jeez, Laine, this is unprecedented. The rest of the developed world is freaking out with Brexit and LePen and so forth, and a mentally ill maniac like Trump in the presidency could radically inflect the trajectory of civilization. I’m, um, no fan of neoliberalism, but I have enjoyed watching Hilary. Personally, she has rocked it. It moves me. I’m stunned by the fact that the woman archetype who for her adult life has been the one (and been hated for it) who is going to be the first woman president of the United States has had to face… that man. How incredibly, dialectically weird. And in the face of this risk. Women have some serious thinking about men to do. Something like 60% of the white men in this country have been willing to at least say they will vote for Trumbo. And too…. Think of the psychic torment that Trump has experienced because he has had to face…. That Woman. Wow. It has done damage to not just our dignity and polity that we have not been able to simply dismiss and reject his man, but it has been awful to be unable to just say I beg your pardon, but you may not treat me, or anyone else, that way. I pity my poor, dead mother and the death of the manners of her generation. This really is a mass demon. I did vote for Nader. He is brilliant on the topic of the corruption of the claims that we have to vote a certain way. I think Jill Stein is the shit, too. I am more uncertain this time that there may be overridingly compelling reasons to polar vote. What do you think about this? Gary Johnson is a dullard and an asshole, BTW. Your distant cousin was his personal counsel while he was Governor of New Mexico. That all said, I wonder what YOU think about this: Do you think it’s risky for me to vote third in Michigan? So: Proposition. Voting for the candidate of your choice is ALWAYS a PRINCIPALLED choice. Always. Will you help me understand the epistemological defensibility of this statement? Feeling compelled to do otherwise is ALWAYS a consequence of a corrupt and deficient system. Diagrammable? My view, Laine? Vote third, with pride and conviction. If I do, I will. The people who will remonstrate with you are principalled, passionate, but craven. What do you think?

Loving you.

Dad

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