159,000 jobs lost in September equal 159,000 reasons why John McCain loses
I’m starting to think maybe I should have majored in economics when I was in college. That way I would have a much better understanding of just how screwed up this economy really is – and how screwed up my life is about to become.
Oh it’s not that I don’t know it’s really, really, reeeeeeally bad. But most Americans can figure that one out on their own. It’s kinda hard to miss. But after reading this recent article in the Oct. 3 New York Times that 159,000 jobs were lost in America in September alone? And more than 700,000 during the past nine months….?
It’s not good enough any more to simply have a general understanding that life as we know it here on Earth is going up in smoke. When my house is on fire, I don’t want to have only a basic understanding that it would probably be a good idea to leave the house. That won’t work. What I want to know is precisely what I need to do to rescue as much of my home as I possibly can.
Because this is where ignorance becomes a deadly disease. We are so accustomed to accepting ignorance as the norm, that we don’t trust those who have risen above it. Sen. Barack Obama is the best example I can think of. Here we have a man of mixed-race parentage who was raised by a single mother and his grandparents and who didn’t have much at all growing up. But then he gets accepted to Harvard, where he excels, and consequently he grows up to become someone who carries himself like someone who was educated at Harvard and excelled. So what is the label tossed around his neck for succeeding against all odds at one of this nation’s most demanding educational institutions? He is called an “elitist,” which is today’s codeword for someone who is educated and has a hard time hiding that fact.
And then we have Sarah Palin, who went to something like 4 mediocre colleges in 5 years (and it shows) but her aw shucks folksiness is supposed to erase that fact because this lack of qualifications magically makes her more like the rest of “us” and therefore more trustworthy and “real”. At least that’s what the McCain campaign has been banking on. Thankfully that strategy finally appears to be losing altitude because it’s becoming apparent even to those who would rather not think too deeply that perhaps it’s not such a good idea to send someone like themselves to the White House. Why? Because the White House is a place for the absolute best and brightest we have to offer, meaning the absolute best this nation is capable of producing. We don’t need the guy we feel comfortable having a beer with at the wheel. That is madness. We need that kid – now all grown up – who sat in the front row in school and was so smart he scared the rest of us. Because it will require scary intelligence to run the most powerful nation on Earth.
We need someone who truly understands all the implications of that Oct. 3 article in the New York Times. We need someone who knows how to navigate through every detail that most of “us” will never be able to understand unless/until we can find the time to homeschool/upgrade ourselves to a significantly higher plateau than where the majority of us currently reside. Because right now? I think it’s safe to say that higher education is not nearly the priority it needs to be for most Americans, which is why McCain felt safe choosing Palin. He figured the majority of Americans would feel much more comforted by the presence of a perky, energetic ditzy parrot on the ticket than the threat of a true intellect. Because intellect scares a lot of folks. Makes ’em feel like “this guy thinks he/she’s better than me.”
Well right now folks, we need the guy with the scary intellect. And then we need to change course and begin producing a whole lot more like him. A whole lot more. Because our ignorance is killing us. Our ignorance is how George Bush got elected in the first place. And in the second place. Our ignorance is why the race between Barack Obama and McCain was ever even close. Our ignorance is why more of us didn’t see this economy rolling over us until we’d already been flattened.
It is the economy that will win the debate for Obama in Tuesday night’s debate on October 7, and it is the economy that will take him to the White House. But it will be our refusal to remain ignorant to all that which threatens us that will free the nation to become the kind of place we need it to be.
The kind of place it must be.