I've rarely ever called myself a "Badger" or "Cheesehead" but tonight I'm pretty pleased to say I'm from Wisconsin. We learned about "Fighting Bob" La Follette and Wisconsin's progressive political traditions in grade school back in the early 1970s and I hope they are still teaching the children of Wisconsin about them today. "Fighting Bob" would be very pleased with his State and his people tonight, I think. I certainly am. The voters of Wisconsin showed the nation that they are deeply concerned about the future of this country and unwilling to be cowed by negative campaign tactics and imagined inevitability. I lift my beer and brandy to you, my sweet drunken friends, family and neighbors! You did good today, very good.
The other side of the coin tonight was the McCrazy "Straight to Hell" Express and the unveiling of what will probably be his one and only campaign meme from now on: BE AFRAID, BE VERY AFRAID! McCain went completely over the top, trying to out-fear even Bush and Cheney, casually throwing out the word "apocalyptic" even! (And if that's not code to the Christian Right, I don't know what is, kids.) It's hard for me to believe that I once thought very highly of this man, considered him a real political maverick, willing to stake his political life upon his actual beliefs. And now all of that has been tossed out the back of the bus for his fevered pipe-dream of presidency. It's sickening to see a real American hero do this to himself and his country, absolutely sickening.
Last political thought of the night: Kudos to Michelle Obama. She's gonna be blasted left, right and center for it, but when she said that "for the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country" I knew exactly what she was saying. A lifetime of bitter cynicism about politics had left me scarred and hateful for decades, but in the last year I've felt those scars begin to heal and new, proud flesh emerge. It's a helluva feeling, folks. I've always cared about my country, but my cynicism has always stood in the way of acting upon my concerns. That's changing, that has changed. And change is what we have to do and where we have to go from now on.
Say it with me: Yes, we can! Yes, we can! Yes, we can!