No predictions. It’s a fool’s game to presume to predict the outcome of an election like this one. Tomorrow I will cast my vote for Kerry, then I will come home and turn on the TV and wait and watch, trying to Keep Hope Alive. Yes, I said Keep Hope Alive, despite being an inveterate pessimist.
I feel like the country is more divided now than ever. More even than in the 1960s. But without the utopianism of the 1960s. No counterculture, no dreams of revolution. Only this gulf. I do not understand the 50-million-odd Bush supporters; I do not know how to reason with them. I feel like we live on different planets.
All we ask is that the national nightmare be over. That we return to merely ordinary stupidity, incompetence, and oppression (sort of like how Freud said the aim of psychoanalysis was to dissolve neuroses, so that people could return to ordinary unhappiness, the intractable difficulties of just living). Doubtless Kerry will be a mediocre President. And the Iraq situation and the US economy are both in such a mess that, even in the best-case scenario, there is little he could do to make things better. But that sort of doesn’t matter. Voting out Bush is the only thing that matters, ending his four-year reign of terror, his assault on 9/10ths of the Bill of Rights, his Big Lie propaganda campaigns, his running amok over the rest of the world, his crony capitalism.
Nobody I’ve talked to is that enamored of Kerry. What we share, instead, is the sense that a vote for Kerry — really, a vote against Bush — is a minimal act of human decency, a simple effort of joining together to turn back the tide of ignorance and bigotry that otherwise threatens to engulf us. Which is why I’m trying to Keep Hope Alive.