Posts Tagged ‘Election Day 2020’

Election Day

November 3, 2020

Miss Mia Sopaipilla, who has seen a few elections,
says this one is in the bag.

My first election was Nixon-McGovern, so I am no stranger to the thorough electoral beating.

Man, talk about taking a header right out of the gate. Forty-nine states; 520 electoral votes to 17; 60.7 percent of the popular vote.

For Nixon. Jesus H. Christ.

I had tried to register as a member of the Youth International Party (YIP), but the county clerk wasn’t having any of that bullshit.

Just as well. After the election Jerry Rubin swapped Yippie for yuppie and became a bidnessman. Abbie Hoffman got arrested for nose whiskey and took it on the Jesse Owens. So it goes.

After that thrashing I figured the GOP had all the votes it was ever gonna need. And so even when the Democrats pissed me off, which was and is often, I never voted for a Republican. Ever.

In 1976 I voted Socialist Workers Party (Peter Camejo and Willie Mae Reid). Four years later I gave my nod to independent John Anderson.

Fear and Loathing, Campaign Trail style

The more things change, etc.

But in 1984 and ’88 I held my beak and voted for Fritz Mondale and Michael Dukakis. By then I had friends in the Colorado political apparatus and had gotten personally involved in a few campaigns, in a small way. Pulling the lever in ’88 took some doing. The Dukakis people I met at a Denver event were some of the biggest douchebags I ever met in my life. They could’ve made a brother vote for David Duke, who was also on the ballot that year.

Gore. Kerry. Fuck me running. I’ve backed a long string of losers. “All horse players die broke,” as Damon Runyon has taught us. Especially if you bet on horses’ asses.

Still, I keep coming back to the track. Why? Because it’s the only game in town. Unless you want to start shooting people, which strikes me as a hamhanded way to win an argument.

I had doubts about that program even when I was a half-assed Maoist. Political power may indeed grow out of the barrel of a gun, but occasionally a fella finds himself on the wrong end of the ol’ smokepole.

And for what? Knock over all the ducks you want, Bubba. The carnival goes on.

In “Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail ’72,” Hunter S. Thompson recounted a chat he had with Edward Bennett Williams, a trial attorney and president of the Washington Redskins, who was backing Ed Muskie.

Said Williams:

“If Nixon wins again we’re in real trouble. That’s the real issue this time. Beating Nixon. It’s hard to even guess how much damage those bastards will do if they get in for another four years.”

Thompson found the argument familiar and depressing.

“How many of these goddamn elections are we going to have to write off as lame but “regrettably necessary” holding actions? And how many more of these stinking, double-downer sideshows will we have to go through before we can get ourselves straight enough to put together some kind of national election that will give me and the at least 20 million people I tend to agree with a chance to vote for something, instead of always being faced with that old familiar choice between the lesser of two evils?”

Quite a while, it seems. Because here we are, and without Herr Doktor Thompson to advise us. Imagine what he might have written about our latest stinking, double-downer sideshow if he could’ve gotten himself straight. This time around the greater of two evils makes Nixon look like Pat Paulsen.

That said, don’t expect any wisdom from me. Thomas McGuane’s Chet Pomeroy thought he could “handicap the track on this whole shit-heel civilization and truck paychecks till doomsday,” but I ain’t him. Me, I’ve picked exactly two winners since 1972 and they were the same guy.

This election is lucky No. 13. Oh, Christ. I’m crawling into a Sprouts sack with the cat. Let me know how it all turns out. If nothing else we’re gonna need a bigger sack.