Last night, I woke up at 4:30 A.M. from a deep sleep. I was having an anxiety dream.
A couple of weeks ago, while I was standing in line to register or filling up my arms at the bookstore, the thought actually crossed my mind, "What would be the content of my anxiety dreams now?"
I understand that commonly, most people's anxiety dreams look a lot like mine. There I am, back in school, the papers are being handed out for a final exam. I realize that back at the beginning of the semester, I misread my schedule and so I haven't actually attended any of the classes or heard any of the material on which I am now being tested. All these years later, and the anxieties that plagued me in high school and college are still with me.
And so it occurred to me that now that I'm back in college, going to classes and taking exams, what would I dream about when my sleeping mind got all anxious?
And last night, I got an answer to that idle question.
In my dream, it was election day, 2008. I was incredibly anxious because John McCain might win.
Back in 2000, I gave money to John McCain's Straight Talk Express. I liked the guy, and I liked what he had to say. (On the Democratic side, I was favoring Bill Bradley, for many of the same reasons.) Somewhere, in one of these many boxes I have yet to unpack, is a McCain 2000 button I got for my check.
But reading about the campaign over the past couple of weeks, I've grown more and more worried.
I think the first thing that caught my attention was Sarah Palin's statement in her acceptance speech that Barack Obama (spellcheck on Blogger still fails to recognize that name and it appears with a jagged red underline) found time to author two books but hasn't written one piece of legislation.
That's not true, I thought.
And, as the press and independent fact checker websites confirmed, that's not true.
And then came McCain's recent attack ad in which he claimed that Obama wrote and passed a law (uhhh... wait a minute...) that would teach sex education to kindergarten students.
It turns out that what the ad refers to was legislation passed by State Senator Obama to educate children about the threats posed by sexual predators. A "Bad Touch" kind of thing.
So John McCain was lying.
And I happened to be watching The View the other day when McCain was on and was asked by Joyce Behar (or whatever her name is) why he was lying about Barack Obama in his campaign ads. And he denied he was lying. Which in my book counts as lying again.
Here's why that bothers me so much: that's exactly why I've come to hate George W. Bush. George Bush looked me in the eye and told me a lie. And I believed him. I believed him when he said that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction that posed a threat to us, and after a war that would be in-by-April-out-by-June, we'd eliminate that threat and establish a democratically elected government in the Middle East and that democracy would spill over into Iran and Saudi Arabia and Syria and everything would be hunky-dory. And I believed that.
George Bush lied to me.
And now, John McCain's lying to me.
And so is Sarah Palin.
And another aspect of my dream--I swear--was that before he could be innaugurated, McCain had a fatal heart attack and Sarah Palin was to be sworn in as the forty-fourth President of the United States of America. (I actually have no idea what would happen in that situation; to the best of my knowledge, it wasn't contemplated by the framers of the Constitution.)
And that really scared the shit out of me, that a woman who lies and keeps on lying (about her opposition to the Bridge to Nowhere) who before she was the governor of a state that has the overwhelming lion's share of it's revenue come from tax payers in the other forty-nine states, was the mayor of a town not quite as large as Doylestown, Pennsylvania. And because she made some Really Bad decisions about the building of a new recreation center, she left Wasilla with a deficit of several millions of dollars and no recreation center when she ascended to Governor.
Up until now, up until this dream I had last night, I've been leaning toward Obama, but not because I think he'll be a superdooperincredible President. But just because I want three things from the next President:
1. I want health insurance I can afford;
2. I want us to get the hell out of Iraq; and
3. I want the United States of America to stop torturing people.
And Obama seems to be slightly more likely than McCain to fulfill those objectives. Because Obama at least has talked about each of those, and all I've heard from McCain is how tough a McCain presidency would be on Pork Barrel Spending, an issue about which I care just about not at all.
But now, fuck John McCain. That man will say or do anything to get elected. Including looking me in the eye and lying to me. And I see no indication that if elected, he and his Vice President wouldn't lie and lie and lie and lie and lie.
And I don't want that from my President.
But, I'm worried that just like me back in 2003, at least 50.5% of the voting populace in a handful of swing states will believe the lies they're being told, and we could indeed be in for four more years of complete and unmitigated moral bankruptcy in this country.
God, I hope not.