Politalking: 2016 Election Thoughts   2 comments

Ok, Wow.

This election was intense to watch. Obviously the majority of the media got it completely wrong. I know I didn’t expect Donald Trump to win. Even the most careful poll and aggregate sites, like 538, didn’t predict a high chance of this outcome. Some like the NY Times Upshot gave him a chance in the single digits. So this is a historic upset of a victory, regardless of the side you take.
Most of my friends are distraught over the news. I don’t think it is wrong to be so upset. People’s investment in this election was strong, and certain groups can be very negatively affected by the results. Although I didn’t have a strong pull either way, and although I feel that things are going to be as bad as people think, my heart goes out to you. Know I may not always agree with you on everything, but I will gladly lay down my life to protect your rights and freedoms.

So why did this happen? I don’t believe America’s bigots and racist all came out in droves, waiting for lynching to be legal. I don’t think it was a coalition of misogynist men who can wait to grab some p***y. I don’t think it was xenophobes wanting to get rid of “Jose” and “Muhammed”. I’m not saying people like that don’t exist, and I’m not saying all Trump supporters are saints. But I believe it is something much simpler.

Clinton’s supporters got cocky. Most of the liberals I know became too comfortable sitting in their echo chambers, feeling their sense of smug (and often unearned) sense of superiority. They kept downplaying the scandals Clinton was facing as nothing more than fear tactics and misogyny, and treated Trump supporters as nothing more than hate mongers and idiots. Supporting Trump became a scarlet letter, with people losing friends over even the inkling of support for Herr Furher Trump. I think Clinton supporter were well-intentioned in this, because a lot of the rhetoric being tossed around made him seem like the absolute greater of two evils. But by being so divisive, democrats created their own undoing.

When you make it so unpopular to support Trump that people can’t even speak his name, you don’t get rid of the support. All you do is shut down the conversation and eliminate your chance to convince others. People forced Trump supporters underground, making them insulate themselves in an echo chamber in order to save their own sanity. They stopped talking to the other side, stopped watching and reading most news, and gave up on challenging their own views. Only trolls, contrarians, and the true undecided continued the dialogue and only barely. I know I was terrified to speak out about the election at all, and had to constantly throw in jabs at Trump to show I don’t like the guy.
Come election time, however, his supporters came out in droves, and surprised everyone.

That isn’t the only reason Trump won, but I think it’s a big one. The emails are another reason, as is the 3rd party vote pulling a lot of the younger vote away. It is tempting to blame them for this election, and you wouldn’t be entirely wrong to do so. I think Comey was in a tough spot, and if I were in his position I would probably have done the same. If he didn’t announce the emails and they found something incriminating after a Clinton victory, imagine how much of a shit show would have occurred. As for 3rd party candidates, can you blame them for wanting to buck the system? For wanting to convince people to vote for good and not just lesser evils? Or should we have just embraced the two-party system, and told Gary to smoke a bowl and sit down?

But in the end, it comes down to Clinton failing to convince more people to support her. If we as a country value democracy we have to accept the results, even if they aren’t the ones we wanted. Keep in mind even the popular vote is only separated by 0.1% of the electorate. That could mean half the country is racist, homophobic, and sexist. But I have faith in humanity, nor do I feel I have the right to pass judgment on a large group of people who have just as many diverse reasons for voting as their opponents.

So we are left with Trump as our president. We have to play the hand we are dealt. But I believe adversity begets change, and if you think a Trump presidency is going to be bad, then fight it. Work to defend the rights of you friends and loved ones. Make you dissent and disapproval heard. Pressure your senators to be honest and represent you. Fight for voting reform and what you feel is right. It may be a hard road, but if it is important as you think it is then it is worth it.

I hope Trump surprises us by actually not being the monster he seems to be. At the very least I hope his presidency convinces people that we need to pull the reins on presidential power, because every power Obama grabbed is now in Trump’s tiny infant hands.

But I honestly don’t know. It could be a real shit-show. Either way, we are all in this together. So breathe, think, and realize the sun will always rise the next day. We have made it through darker times, and we will make it through these.

I may talk politics in the future, but this is the last I’m talking about this election. We’ve dealt with this bullshit for a year; time to go back to our car videos and porn for a few months.

Thank you for reading,

Shaman

Posted 11/09/2016 by Shaman in Politalking

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Politalking: In Defense of Not Voting For President   Leave a comment

It is Election Day Eve in America. I’m sure everyone is currently filling up their bunkers and buying their guns. To say this election has been divisive would be an understatement. I’ve avoided talking about it for most of the time, but with it being so close to over I felt I should get this off my chest while this is still relevant.

I’m not trying to convince you to vote for any particular candidate. They all stink, and it’s just a matter of how strong the BO is. Not only do I think there is no good choice, but I believe voting should be as private if you choose it to be. What you do when you sign your ballot or go to the polls is your business, and anyone who tries to tell you otherwise is an ass who is trying to manipulate you. They don’t give two shits about you voting unless it is for their candidate. I will be keeping my vote private, except in discussions with close friends. I think more people should do the same.

That being said, do you even need to vote?

The answer is yes, but only because of all of the local issues. Those are the races that have a direct effect on your life, and the ones you have a chance to influence. Too many people get up on the  Trump Train, the Clinton Hill, the Johnson Bong, and the Stein Totally-GMO-Free-Rice-Cracker, and forget to even look into who their local reps and judges are. The vote for president is the least important part of your vote. Even in swing states (of which Utah is one this year) it doesn’t matter much.

As an example, I know many people don’t bother to learn about the judges in their district. I wish more people would. As a single father, I dread ever having to go to court in Utah, as I would have to face some of the most close minded and negative judges we have in the country. They pass down some of the most unjust and overbearing ruling to fathers who only want to see their kids. I’m not going into specifics as it’s not my case to talk about, but there are some horrific stories.

Many of these judges should have been voted out long ago, but they still serve. You know why? Because people don’t learn about them, and then check yes on reaffirming because they don’t give a damn. Imagine how much change you could make in people’s lives by voting informed. The president may hurt our standing with other countries, but these judges can and have destroyed many families and many lives.

You can prevent it. You could sway the results. Many of these elections ar only one by a handful of votes. Your voice and opinon can actually reach these politions, and you can have real change. I think that is a thousand times more important that deciding if you like spray tans or pantsuits.

So, if you find yourself feeling like you just want to stay home because you think the candidates suck; If you are a burnt-out Bernie Bro or a Guac-Bowl carrying Jeb supporter, please still vote. Nothing requires you to vote for a presidential candidate. You can leave it blank or write in your mom. But don’t ignore everything else.

I hope everyone has a good and swift election tomorrow, and I will see you in Canada as we all jump the border.

Thanks for reading,

Shaman

Posted 11/07/2016 by Shaman in Personal Thoughts, Politalking

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Dead Man Walking   2 comments

I’m boring
I’m dull
I’m an anxious coward
An asshole, not a man
I’m a bundle of insecurities and fears
Wrapped up in day dreams and fantasies
Masquerading as a functioning adult
Who pretends he gives a damn if he wakes up tomorrow or not.

I’m holding on, barely anchored to the shore
But still I’m finding ways to sever what few lines keep me moored
Using knives fashioned from doubt to hack away
One at a time
Until I’m finally released from it all.

I’ve squandered the one thing I can’t get back
Spending all my time hiding in a room
Playing video games and jerking off
That’s not life, that’s just existing
Taking up space in this world until my ticket comes up
And someone else gets my spot.

I’m not a human being
I’m just a future has been
A forgotten memory
I’m not alive
I’m just a dead man walking

-Shaman Romney 2016

Posted 10/20/2016 by Shaman in Poetry

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Dead Bird   1 comment

I walked down the street and cried
As I passed her grave
Unmarked, rotten, and ant riddled.
Her life cut short, her wings clipped
She learned to fly. Learned to fall.
A life without purpose,
At least the one she wanted.
Now she feeds the ants instead.

– Shaman Romney 2016

Posted 10/12/2016 by Shaman in Poetry

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Idolatry   Leave a comment

Never meet your idols. They’re better in your mind.
You’ll find they’ll never live up to the image you’ve designed.
You might get lucky, and realize they’re just human.
They might think you are cool, and you could gain a great friend.
But most likely they just smile and walk away.
You came on far too strong
Like the thousands of other fans they meet everyday.

If I met my idol, he’d pretend to be my friend
But in the end, at best he’d forget me
At worse, he’d regret meeting me.
I’m a reminder of the life he might have led
If he didn’t have the guts to tackle his problems
And pursue his dreams.

So I’ll remain idle in my idol worship
Ideally, I’ll never meet any of them.

-Shaman Romney 2016

Posted 10/07/2016 by Shaman in Poetry

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Pitter Patter   Leave a comment

Pitter patter
My thoughts scatter
Like rain drops in my mind
A constant torrent that won’t relent
At best my mind is like Seattle
At worst its a monsoon
It’s like I live in a steel roofed house
Eventually all the metallic static
Becomes synonymous with silence
Most of my ideas get lost in the flood waters
I’m only left with the biggest, the best, the worst
Imagine what I could do
If I wasn’t mostly water.
If I was filled with sunny days
And springtime weather.

-Shaman Romney 2016

Posted 08/24/2016 by Shaman in Poetry

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Static   Leave a comment

It’s quiet here in the clutter of my room
But BOOM there is thunder in my mind’s confines
And POP something drops from the top of the shelf
I pick it up, I write it down so it’ll make a sound
Like CRASH as I smash it into a line
Now that looks fine; something that I can call mine
And DING hear it ring the timer says time to finish up
But no, my mind doesn’t think it’s enough
So POW hear it now as I’m messing it up
I keep meddling, back peddling. It’s not enough
I SCREAM as I dream of the perfect line
Hiding in the back of my mind and so I mine
My delusions of grandeur, I’m looking for gold
No matter how hard I swing, CRACK, I bring up coal
I’m tired of always digging, but I have to keep at it
Otherwise my mind will devolve into static

-Shaman Romney 2016

Posted 08/10/2016 by Shaman in Poetry

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