Web Cowgirl 衛 思 維 (webcowgirl) wrote,
Web Cowgirl 衛 思 維

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What can a reasonable person hope to do?

When I was studying political philosophy, it became clear to me that the study of American Politics was being done ass-backwards. The focus was all on numbers, numbers, numbers, and national elections. Meanwhile, I was off in some dusty corner, trying to figure out what the philosophical underpinnings of "democracy" were. Occasionally this would lead to a look at different ways to implement democracy (direct vs. republican, occasionally a bit about parliamentary vs. whatever we've got going here), but mostly we just buried our heads in our navels and called it good, waving at the people on the other side of the "political science" spectrum (whose heads were stuffed up their asses). But in both cases, it seemed like acceptance of how things are in the world we live in was a given - no one was looking at how to change things, no one was writing manifestos.

I've had some luck engaging in democratic practice in the years since, from working on congressional and city council campaigns to actually doing citizen organizing (this was the most satisfying method of putting my money where my mouth was I could ever desire, and yet I could see it was full of potential for, say, causing me to disintegrate into a heap of bitter anger if the cause I had fought for was not successful). Yeah, sure, dealing with issues like limiting parking on your street or trying to get a new park built seems so darn small but at least with these kinds of issues you can not only see a direct impact on your life but you can try to attack it meaningfully.

Unfortunately, it seems like once you get beyond local politics you're almost completely incapable of having any influence at all on anything that happens unless you're filthy rich. Which leads me with one question: how do I know which Democratic candidate is actually capable of taking the presidency away from Bush? Are the Republicans actually running scared from Dean, or is he truthfully not viable? If it's not him, will it be Clark? How can we figure out who the right one is before it's too late and Bush has secured another four years of crony capitalism headed from his throne?
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