Well, happy new year. Maybe. 2011 kind of sucked — earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear meltdown for the Japanese; total fuckup for the Eurozone; continued suppression of the working class in the US (albeit with some vague rays of hope); general craziness, with only minimal hope of non-authoritarian governments, in the Middle East; droughts and floods in Australia; more of the usual shit in sub-Saharan Africa; slowing economic growth in China; Putin being Putinesque in Russia; etc., etc.
Now, our American news media are wasting our time by devoting tons of time and space to the Iowa Republican caucuses. Does anybody remember who they selected last time? Mike fucking Huckabee! Why would anybody take Iowa Republicans seriously? As of tonight's network news, Santorum is surging there.
Anyway, back in the summer of 1976, I pulled off the interstate for want of a vodka gimlet in Harlan, Iowa, and found myself in a bar that turned out to be the hangout for local government officials. I can say with more than reasonable certitude that they were not evangelical Christians, but they still held Jimmy Carter in very high regard. Harlan, they said, was "Carter Country." I stayed for several days, and had a hell of a good time.
Jimmy Carter is the kind of man we all would like to have as our president. Sadly, our disgustingly corrupt political system cannot accept a genuinely good man at its helm. The presidency did its best to corrupt Jimmy Carter but, fortunately for him, he did not win a second term. He's been spending the rest of his life making up for the damage he was forced to do in those four sad years. Yes, he's the best ex-president in American history, and if his beliefs about redemption are correct, I'd imagine he's redeemed by now — but he still keeps trying, harder and harder.
Iowa doesn't matter — nor does New Hampshire. It's all just a show. Even without the Citizens United decision, it still would be all about the money. Obama has been sucking up to Wall Street just as hungrily as he did four years ago, and any Republican who wins their nomination will be just as deeply in Wall Street's pocket.
Let's all sing along with the chorus from Les Mis: "We want a revolution — now."