« Intelligent Opposition Requires Accurate Knowledge (Personal) | Main | Can Amazon’s Kindle influence Drug Policy? »

April 19, 2008

Are Election Politics (finally) Catching Up with the Drug War? (Personal)

Enough of what’s been happening both at home and abroad since 2001 has paralleled what pot smokers have been (unwittingly) teaching me over the same interval to be downright uncanny. I believe that a major conclusion to be drawn from my study is that human emotions have always played a greater role in our decision making than most of us care to admit. A recent example, one with a particularly interesting twist, was just aired on PBS.   

 The Weekly Political Wrap is a moderated Friday program in which David Brooks and Mark Shields discuss the week’s politics; yesterday’s program elicited seemingly different opinions from the pundits in which each recalled the outcomes of American Presidential elections since 1968.

 I wasn’t surprised by Shields’ annoyance at what he considers the unfair treatment of Obama by Pennsylvania debate moderators. Brooks, whose personality I’ve always found somewhat smarmy and unattractive, justified that impression by opining that the questions directed at Obama were “fair” and that he had "not come off well.” His main conclusion seemed to have been that Obama is being revealed as a (typical) losing Democrat in the mold of Carter, Dukakis, and Kerry.

i was caught a bit off guard by the fury audible in Shields’ response; although ostensibly not directed at Brooks, he clearly saw his double standard. What also gave me some hope for the future of this benighted republic is that Shields was also specific about a couple of sacred cows: super patriot Dick Cheney’s five (count them five) requests for draft deferment in the Sixties, and his citation of an issue fairly close to the drug war: the high incidence of PTSD among Iraq returnees for which the VA has no plan.

What Shields’ anger suggested to me is that our brighter pundits have not missed as much as I feared; they have simply not spoken out because of the usual concerns about being politically incorrect. Thus Shields’ incomplete melt-down may really be a sign of hope that when things get bad enough, the hypocrisy required to sustain our drug war might finally be discarded by enough people to make a difference.

Although not often credited, it's quite obvious that the Great Depression played a role in the Repeal the 18th Amendment.

OTOH, if this nation is frightened enough of the idea of a black president to elect John McCain, we could be in even more trouble than I suspected...

Doctor Tom


Posted by tjeffo at April 19, 2008 09:17 PM