Even though I am English, I still take an interest in American politics. At the moment, I am despairing that all the main players in this election all seem to be anti-gay and anti-abortion. It sickens me that we live in a world where, despite everything, all people are not equal and two millenia old superstitions still have a tight grip in politics. So here is my question:
As an atheist, who do you want as president?
All the republican candidates are certifiably crazy. I am very disappointed with Obama, but better he than any republican.
Hmm, lemme think... icepick to the forehead, or M16 to the forehead...?
In all seriousness, and at risk of sounding like a paranoid conspiracy theorist, if we ever get big business to stop directing our public officials like marionettes, then maybe I'll start caring who gets elected again. As it stands now, it matters about as much to me as who wins the next American Idol (which is absolutely none, just to be clear).
M16 seems like the clear choice here. I mean the force of a 7.62mm round at point blank range, you'll probably be dead before you can be said to have felt anything. An ice pick, that it seems like you'd feel. Maybe you wouldn't even die, you know? You'd just stay alive, feeling that mind-numbingly insane pain. I'll be voting for the M16 every time.
M16 is 5.56mm, but I don't think it would matter greatly in the end. :)
Ha, WOW. Yeah. In my defense, I'm a 240B guy. I only touched my M4 to clean it.
Well, to answer this, let me first define my demographics:
I am a 17 year old, democrat, texan, that is STRONGLY tied into politics (get into this later). My family is also in the top income percent.
Now, basically I've been raised in an intellectual environment of fact based on interpreting one's own research (almost all cross examining books and research papers with one another). I, like I would assume many other atheists, am very tied into politics (As I can see you are, even from across the pond, which is AMAZING to me that your that "curious?" about our republicans L.O.L).
So now I can say why I got into politics because it really does apply to answering your question haha. Basically living in the absolute HEART of the United States of Jesus that republicans seem to think America is, and also being in a family that is in the top percent, I am absolutely painted as a Republican from birth. And that is what I thought I was until about my freshman year of high school. I dug into the republican party thinking after all these years (and actually TAUGHT) that the Democrat Party sucked the money from your pockets and gave it to hobos that didn't want to do shit for you. Oh boy was I wrong. I found all the facts I needed, and could actually weigh the differences.
Sure if I myself was rich like my parents, or even in my countries top .1%, I would vote republican based on money. But based on ethics, that's where the Republicans fall short. Their full Republican agenda is nothing but evangelical bullshit used to shove rhetorical moral questions at the voter to make them feel bad if they didn't vote Republican (sounds a lot like religion ROFL!).
So, Republicans are Evangelical plain and simple. But, still being in the grey area between the two parties, I still did more research, and after all that, I was well appalled at their agenda. Anti-gay marriage? Okay jealous? I'm a straight guy, and I don't feel any sort of emotion towards them like the anger that republicans seem to spew.
What really caught my eyes though, wasn't necessarily my research as much as my real world experience did. Comedy Central. Yes, a comedy television channel in America hosts a show called "The Colbert Report". It is the most down to earth comedy show that covers today's media and politics.
Warning. It is silly. But it is also truthful. It is also told through a catholic that seems to question everything and mock everything even his religion. Here is what turned my away from republicans:
So now for this year's politics:
Mitt Romney: flipped back and forth from literally every side of every argument every. Basically a vote whore that pleas off of dumb republicans angry that their lives didn't go anywhere
Rick Perry: WHY THE FUCK DOES HE HAVE TO BE FROM WHERE I AM FROM???? HILJAKJFHAKSLHGFDKLFSADKJHGF HATE HIM SO MUCH! I play tuba, and our school have a budget cut to where the band bought nothing last year and the athletics buys brand new uniforms when the band's are 30 years old. (I know this is county which is a retarded school board, but the budget cuts are by the governors office). He also claims to have created jobs. false. Idk if he even lives in texas or has seen the job market for the lower class. He also is a heavy christian that will "end the war on religion [by starting a war on all other religions other than Christianity]) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PAJNntoRgA <- just watch for a good laugh
Michelle Bachman: doesn't know anything about American history and basically is basing all her own politics on them. go figure.
Hermain Cain: jk. He's not running. But I'm still buying a t shirt to make fun of him.
Ron Paul: This old bastard seems to be the more liberal, but he seems to metaphorically put a little crazy in even when no one even listens to him. He isn't winning in Iowa and he's the only one that hasn't royally fucked up.
Newt Gingrich: Attacks the media because he doesn't have any true presidential plans. Don't bother researching him, It's a waste of finger strength guaranteed.
Jon Huntsman: A mormon. They're nice people, but I may want a scientologist running america under that than the book of mormon and the only reason people live in Utah. But, he is basically a conservative Republican with the same crazy views.
Keep praying Republicans and god is sure to answer!
Barack Obama: Basically an average democrat that I don't mind. He is trying to change things to see where they will take us. At least its not as crazy as republicans, but they are getting a lot of block from the republican filibuster in congress.
Basically Obama gets hate for his ethnicity and name and democrat views. He seems to be blamed for everything gone wrong in the past 30 years due to reagonomics. It is very hard to make a change in 4 years with the rest of the law process blocking you because of false religious views and false facts. He seems to look like he feels the way I do: annoyed by Republicans. Even when asked to debate the republican candidates, he was basically saying "You guys and the stupidest mother fuckers I know... no. But you guys can troll yourselves though."
Sorry this is a long post! I just really needed an outlet for my democrat views. The only other people that back me in my whole city, literally, are a few friends in the band and 2 teachers that are the only ones to actually travel to and live in other governments/economies.
Also, if anyone wants to know exactly what it's like as a democrat in Texas, just email me and I might have some good stories! looool.
I was also thinking of moving to England for my graduate school (currently accepted in a top university for electrical engineering college I would like to keep unnamed for my own protection). I don't care how much taxes are, but I am now curious... how are English politics compared to American? I love your interest in our Republican sit coms.
Please don't apologise for the length I LOVED your post. So much insight! I will definitely be watching the vids you linked (The Colbert Report sounds fascinating). :D
I am not very politically active over here- but voted when I became old enough (Lib Dem) as I saw it to be the socially responsible thing to do. Sadly, not many other people do, and I think there were figures showing that more people voted in The X Factor then in the election. I honestly can't believe that people care more about next week's has-been than who will be running the country. Politicians are not trusted or respected here. There have been too many scandals I suppose. Including the MP expenses scandal in which lists of what each MP had claimed for off expenses with public taxpayer's money (the most famous of these being a "floating duck house" and porn) and the newspapers dined off this for weeks.
Jacqui Smith was heavily criticised and mocked for her pervert husband XD
The best debate on religion I have seen is the Intelligence Squared Debate where you can see Ann Widdecombe (conservative Roman Catholic) *shudders* and the national treasure that is Stephen Fry (presenter of QI, noted intellectual and atheist) and Christopher Hitchens :D.
Part 4/5 are Stephen Fry's bits, the vote at the end gives me a little hope :P
Colbert is definitely political satire/farce at its finest. :) Both Stewart and Colbert are on my HULU list. :)
That's why I like him. Because he doesn't pick sides politically, even though he plays the Right..
Wonderful post - Australian politics is based on English politics - we are a colony of convicts after all - but we see most of what you see - both England and Australia have left and right wing - Tory right wing and Labor left wing in England and Liberal, right wing and Labor, left wing.
Both countries are nowhere near as radical or fearful or evangelical as America. Both countries have their nut cases, but nowhere near the numbers in America. In both countries, one can 'come out' as an Atheist. No problem, keeping in mind Christopher Hitchens, Stephen Fry, Eddie Izzard and Ricky Gervais - all poms.
I know about Rick Perry, Michelle Bachmann, the lovely Newt Gingrich, who at the moment is winging and bleating foul, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, and Rick Santorum, and the others. I have been watching whatever news items that have come this way.
From this end I think Rick Santorum might squeek in as the Republican that goes against Obama, and people will realize just what a nut case he is, just how dangerous he is - I think Obama will win in the end - he must.
Australia has PBS, and SBS which is also a public channel - but everybody should be watching American politics - the influence goes around the world, a finger in most pies.
Our politicians are not quite as rampant as the 'floating duck house' but the Capital of the Porn sales is Canberra, which just happens to be where the politicians congregate.
I just don't see the connection :D
I also saw the English ex-poliican Anne Widdecombe, a raving Catholic who looks and sounds like a caricature, debate against Stephen and Hitch. Just because someone seems to be educated, does not mean they are smart.
Of course, Stephen and Christopher wiped the floor with her. I also watched a show with the said Anne being apologetic for all the atrocities done in the name of religion, mostly hers, and said it was "Just of the Era, a product of the times - what the????
I watched a show called The Spy Factory - everyone should watch this video if they already haven't - truly fricking scary and makes me realise just how incompetent the American Secret Services really are. Its about NSA, CIA and FBI. This will kill any conspiracy thoughts anyone may have. It's an oldie but a goody.
Both Australia and England have excellent satirical and comedy shows, pillaring both sides of politics. We also get, my personal favourite American Show Jon Stewart and also Stephen Colbert and Penn and Teller.
Both England and Australia have very outspoken, very intelligent Atheists on TV, and American Atheists visiting doing shows. American Atheists are very well known in both places.
Thank you Sophie for posting the links - it is a reminder just how bloody good they are.
So both countries are excellent, but Australia's weather is better :D.
Here in the United States, the extreme conservatives are certifiable. In the UK, it's the extreme liberals. One example: some of their radical leftists were considering legislation requiring all knives (apparently including chef's knives and surgical scalpels) to have rounded tips so people couldn't use them to stab other people. Maybe all baseball bats should be made of flubber, too, eh?
I'm gonna go into this one empty-headedly (Buddha anyone?) but, what are the downsides to this if the knives still cut? How great exactly is the inconvenience? Are they rounding up the pointed knives, or just only producing pointless knives from now on? Would certain people still have access to pointed knives? Maybe they could get some kind of license?