Thursday, October 27, 2022
Dark Dreams and Politics
Good Lord, I had some weird dreams last night. I don't remember them all, but in one I was visiting the neighborhood in Florida where I grew up. It was kind of post-apocalyptic. One of the neighbor's houses, which always looked very stately and manicured and traditional in real life (he was a judge), had been turned into a pile of blackened rubble. The house where I grew up was gone -- the lot was completely empty. There wasn't even a slab, though the trees remained. Other houses appeared to be OK. The car I was driving lost control and I almost ran into a tree, but managed to stop in time.
There was more to it, but that's all I remember. I'm sure a psychiatrist would have a field day with those images, but here's my interpretation. I'm thinking a lot about Florida at the moment, since I'm trying to organize our Christmas trip, so it makes sense my mind would go there in dreamland. The devastation and the absence of our house could be a reflection of my mom's memory problems, the fact that so many memories that were dear to us and to her appear to be gone now. I suppose there could also be a political meaning in the judge's house being wrecked -- the death of the rule of law and the precarious state of democracy, etc.
Heavy stuff to wake up to on a Thursday morning! I was reading the news a lot yesterday so that's enough to instill apocalyptic images in anyone's brain.
I've been thinking about the Pennsylvania Senate race, of all things. It's apparent from the recent debates that John Fetterman, the Democratic candidate, is not in optimal health. What to do, in that situation, when your choice is between an obviously impaired small-town mayor and a Trump-supporting TV doctor? I believe I'd vote for Fetterman anyway, and I don't mean to blame him for a stroke he obviously could do nothing about.
But I'm left with a feeling in many current races -- not just that one -- that the Democrats aren't running the best possible candidates. We need younger, more vital candidates who are engaged with everyday issues and problems, like inflation, homelessness, runaway student loan debt and "deaths of despair" from opioids and other addictive substances. Democrats need to reconnect with the center and remind voters that the right-wingers are the out-of-touch ones, protecting the wealthy while they bang on about ridiculous non-issues like drag queens in schools.
How can Republicans possibly be leading in so many races now, given what's happened to a woman's right to choose an abortion in the USA? Where are all the angry women, and the men who support them?
I just don't get it.
And for the record, I like Joe Biden as a person, but I don't think he should be our presidential candidate in 2024. I think we need new blood. Buttigieg looks most promising to me at the moment, but I'm open to suggestions. If Biden runs of course he'll have my vote, but I won't be happy about it. We've got to bring along some new leaders. (I guess Fetterman might have been that -- and could still be if he fully recovers, although he didn't look like the healthiest guy in the world even before the stroke.)
Anyway, that's what's running around in my brain in the pre-dawn darkness this morning. I'm giving you a couple of autumnal portraits of Olga. It's looking very much like fall out there but it's not very cold -- a high of 68º F today (20º C) and 85 percent humidity. The forecast calls for rain every day through Nov. 10, with the exception of Friday and Saturday. That's not a bad thing given we're still under a hosepipe ban because of our summer drought.
I've been running our dehumidifier and it's been taking about two liters of water out of the air every day. Insane!