1. But he’s not. He’s buying into this myth that politicians are all the same evil, lying fucks. And we learned in 2000 that that really wasn’t the case. Some of them really are much better than others.

    And frankly I honestly think a lot of politicians really do have their hearts in the right place, even the ones with their heads up their asses. I’ve gotten a lot less cynical as I’ve gotten older.

    Anyway, politicians are not all the same, and voting really does matter.

  2. On October 24, 2007, Obama spokesman Bill Burton declared that “Barack will support a filibuster of any bill that includes retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies.” He then voted for the FISA bill earlier this year. That would put Obama quite squarely into Carlin’s categorization of politicians as a liar. I’d be happy to offer more, but I don’t think that questioning Obama’s motives makes one a cynic. A healthy skepticism SHOULD be the cornerstone of any political thinker. Alas, with the Obama acolytes, the mania has taken away their ability to see the man’s opportunism. (And he voted for the bailout bill too, by the way.)

    Obama is a liar, less so than other politicians. But he is a politician.

  3. “He’s buying into this myth…”

    Carlin saw things with utter, soul-blackening clarity: you could see that the toxic material he was handling virtually ate him up over the years.

    When you write, “I’ve gotten a lot less cynical as I’ve gotten older,” you’re describing some sort of self-defense mechanism (the soul’s endorphins?) as they kick in. You certainly can’t be basing your mellowing optimism on a clear-eyed reading of the era. Things are as bad as they’ve ever been. This is the awful truth.

    The American political choice presented is between Right and Ultra Right: what kind of “choice” is that? If anyone would’ve told me, back in the late 1980s, that Al “Tipper’s Husband” Gore would one day embody American *Liberalism*, I’d have considered that person an idiot, a lunatic or a comedian with George Carlin’s wicked sense of the hideous.

    It’s fairly naive to believe that a system installed and refined by The Machine can be used to defy or alter The Machine: if voting could bring about fundamental change, it would be forbidden; and please don’t bring up the noble principles under which the system was first put into place by the Founding Fathers. Things have changed immensely since even Jimmy Carter’s run. The Founding Fathers would shit a collective brick.

    Not that they didn’t see it coming… but the safeguards they tried to put into place turn out to be useless when the electorate has been turned into a big fat docile dairy farm.

    Anyone I’d have the slightest inclination to befriend or even admire wouldn’t stand a chance in modern politics. However: vote Obama, because the alternative is unthinkably evil. But raise smarter, more ethical children, who will in turn raise even smarter, even more ethical children… if you want to see real change.

  4. The man was uncompromising, and God do I miss him. He said this in ’96. Pace Eric Rosenfield above, I’d like to know if he revisited the subject after 2000.

  5. Obama is a politician and plays the game, and I admit that bothers me. However, to equate him or lump him in with Bush/Chaney/McCain/Palin/Rove is a disastrous overstatement of the case. All politicians are NOT the same. Anyone who thinks they are isn’t paying attention.

    Again, it was very easy in 1996 to say it doesn’t matter who you vote for. Dole would have been a different president than Clinton, but not that different. In 1996 I took for granted that all politicians were the same, and voted Libertarian. In 2000 I voted for Nader.

    Bush was the wake up required to tell us that these people are not all the same, that the wrong man in a place of power can have direct and terrible consequences for our country and our world. I should hardly need to list all the reasons, from Iraq to Guantanamo to Katrina to the deregulation that’s lead to the current economic turmoil.

    Seriously, you need to vote in this election, and you need to vote for Obama. Any other decision, any other conclusion about the state of affairs in America today, is either stupidity or lunacy.

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