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Republicans are the worst.
Okay, are you significantly riled up yet? I was once told that if you had to give a speech, you should start it with an incendiary first line to captivate your audience. Given that 97% of TFM’s readership identifies as a Republican according to a poll I just made up, I think I accomplished that. In reality, what I mean is that I’d really like to vote the party line, but the party is really fucking me. I know, I usually tell dick jokes, but I think it’s time for some real talk.
Here’s the thing. I was born and raised in Texas, in a socially conservative family that didn’t talk about politics. In fact, my parents went out of their way to not tell me and my brothers their political views. But because of my surroundings, I was a straight up neo-con from age 14-18. I voted for Dubya in my sixth grade election. Then I went to college, started a triple major in economics, finance, and accounting, read Ayn Rand, became a libertarian, and worked on Ron Paul’s 2008 campaign. I thought I had it all figured out. Hell, I was the editor of our business review, and made my article advocating for the gold standard a front page piece. Then I switched to a straight political science major with a focus in international relations and learned some sense.
So, seven years later, where am I now, politically? Well, if you ask my roommates, I’m a liberal, apparently. In spite of the many times I’ve tried to explain my political leanings to them, they just assume because I’m willing to at least entertain the economics of single payer healthcare, I’m clearly a left-wing ding dong who thinks Jon Stewart is a non-biased source of news for young people. But in fact, I have been, and will continue to be, registered as a Republican. Why? Because I’m really hoping that the party that used to have most things right can get back to that point. I consider myself a conservative, and I believe that the party that allegedly represents that has been fucking up for at least the last 25 years. Here’s why.
The economy is allegedly what Republicans stake their beliefs on. Lower taxes, balanced budgets, deregulation, lower government spending, individual responsibility, and privatization. The problem is that some of those things have become more popular over others in recent iterations of Republican control. Lower taxes is great as a concept, but we still have to pay for the shit that we’re committing to. So we should commit to fewer things, right? Fox News pundits love to mention the National Debt Clock so much, I’m pretty sure they would let it fuck their spouse if it wanted to. You wanna know one of the main reasons why our debt is so insane? Military spending. As a dude who hates Al-Qaeda and wanted just military action against its supporters, Iraq was a stupid fucking decision, and has cost us more tax dollars than any meager social safety net has.
Speaking of social safety nets, let’s start with entitlements. Social Security is broken. Republicans seem to trumpet this fact more than they try to fix it, but I’ll give them the win, given that Democrats don’t even seem to be worried. Regular welfare is so small compared to the actual problem that I don’t even care. Unemployment and food stamps become a politicized issue every time a conservative candidate talks (welfare queens and all that), but the percentage of the budget taken up by those programs is so insignificant compared to the abuses of the system that it ends up lower on my totem pole of problems than the Kardashians. That’s right, I’d rather government intervention in reality TV show programming before we touch poverty entitlements — that’s how insignificant they are.
Okay, so social issues. The big three are gay marriage, marijuana legalization, and abortion. This is where age is a factor. By the way, for how acceptable weed was for the entirety of the ‘60s and ‘70s, I still don’t understand how this is still an issue. You’d think that Baby Boomers would have smoked enough weed in their day to not give a shit about it. Either way, the answer to all three is easy, and conveniently the same. If you wanna piss off old people, who are admittedly the Republican base right now (I wonder why), then sure, go the wrong way on these. But if you want to survive as a party, guess what? Not only do we as young people not care about any of those three issues, you’re actually on the wrong side of all of them. Even my most right-wing friends are cool with dudes marrying dudes, smoking green on the reg, and helping their one-night-stand with the cost of “taking care of it.”
Young people are your future. You can play to win, or you can play to keep winning. The Cavaliers traded Wiggins for Love. How did that work out for them? Well, Love got hurt, Wiggins balled out, LeBron’s only got probably three great years left, and then your organization’s gonna be shocked when you go back to being a sports punchline for giving up your team’s future in favor of ill-fated short-term success. And for what? Your best player to put everything he had on the court and fall short? Glad that worked out for you.
Another thing: Learn to talk. You’re a fucking politician, you placate people for a living, so I don’t understand how you have made it to your position in life, and still are able to say that women are not physically able to get pregnant from rape. I know high school dropouts who know human anatomy/physiology better than that. And that’s not an isolated incident. I’m convinced there is a pandemic of foot-in-mouth disease among Republican politicians these days, and if the only prescription is anything other than more cowbell, we might be fucked.
I have a lot more to say about this, so y’all can probably expect more from me about this subject in the future. I haven’t even talked about guns, the environment, campaign finance reform, privacy, or most importantly, foreign policy (because it requires a full column of its own). The point is, I’m an old-school conservative in most ways. Barry Goldwater and Grover Cleveland are my dudes. I just also happen to live in the 21st century, and I ask that the people I vote for act accordingly..
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