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Tue

01

Jan

2008

Predicting the Winner of the Presidential Election
Tuesday, 01 January 2008 05:28
by Rosemarie Jackowski

Pundits, poll-takers, and politicians have taken over the airwaves. The operation of the US government has become more and more like a game - the terminology of the "race" - questions about who the "winner" will be.

Since I successfully predicted the outcome of the previous presidential election, I will go out on a limb again. Last time I predicted that the winner would be the candidate that most voters would choose as a beer-drinking partner.

The mood in the country is different this time around. Being a good beer-drinking buddy is no longer the most important consideration. Things have not been going so well for many - lack of health care, mortgage foreclosures, a Congress that has been unresponsive to the voters. Sorry folks, you have been screwed again by those you voted for. Anytime you have been the victim of a con, a lesson should be learned. The typical US voter is notoriously a slow learner when it comes to affairs of the State. Even now, as the pundits lead the masses down the garden path, there is very little outcry.

There have been blips of resistance. Talk about Impeachment seems to be counter-productive because it trivializes the crimes. A movement to arrest the Bush/Cheney gang has been started in Vermont. The movement is based on the Principle of Universal Jurisdiction and deserves support, but there is a downside. It exonerates the Congress - those who have abdicated their Constitutional responsibility and who are now cowardly hiding behind the skirts of the Executive Branch. We have a "Don't blame me, I didn't do it, the dog ate my homework" Congress.

Many candidates say they voted for the war because they were lied to. The voters deserve a better explanation than that. Any candidate who is that gullible is dangerous, and should never be in any position of leadership.

Kucinich has been silenced by the media. Shunning by the Press has been a problem for years. Think Nader. The control of the debates has been taken over by the one-party system. Choice, what choice? Why not have three or six or ten political parties - it would energize the masses, it would allow other viewpoints to be expressed.

There are many deficiencies in the system. For one thing, too many people vote. How about a campaign that would encourage people who have not studied the issues to voluntarily stay home on election day. Their votes cancel out the votes of those who have done their homework. Then the inevitable happens. Within days of the election, voters' remorse sets in and then four years of national whining begins.

The ultimate responsibility for the current mess is the voter. Forget Bush and the Congress. The voters could have voted for other candidates if they had really wanted to. Searching out third, fourth, and fifth party candidates is not a difficult process. Voting for an Independent candidate is an empowering experience.

Maybe the idea of political parties should be re-examined. The system is not working. Why not have a system that would choose leaders by a national lottery? It might result in having a president who actually could represent the people. It would raise the possibility of opening up the Presidency to those who are not wealthy. There would be no need for campaign finance reform or term limits. Imagine having a farmer, or teacher, or nurse as our president. How refreshing that would be. My Aunt Helen would make a better president than any I have seen in my lifetime.

This prediction of the outcome of the next election is not based on the pundits, but on what ordinary citizens have been saying on talk radio. It is based on letters to the editor in newspapers across the country. It is based on the current mood of the voters. The news is not good. Albany, New York - Hazleton, Pennsylvania and other cities around the US have exhibited a mob mentality when dealing with the immigration issue. The candidates know this and each has taken a public position on Immigration.

The fear of terrorists is also a hot button issue. How often have we heard that we have to keep killing them "over there" so we don't have to kill them here. Every voter remembers 9/11. Very few remember that more US citizens die every year from lack of health care than were killed on 9/11.

Paranoia and xenophobia will rule the next election. The winner of the next presidential election will be the candidate who is most willing to abuse immigrants and also most willing to bomb those in other countries.

For the sake of humanity, I hope that this prediction is wrong.

Rosemarie Jackowski is an advocacy journalist living in Vermont. She was arrested, tried, and convicted for having participated in a peaceful protest of the war. Her conviction is under appeal in the Vermont State Supreme Court. She can be reached at: dissent@sover.net.
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