Here we are, still in the midst of election mania and the chaos continues. Trump will not accept defeat because in his world that doesn’t exist and Biden cannot take over where there is no acknowledged concession. The people have voted and nothing changes. The Republican Party is lockstep behind their zombie leader and we know that it’s very hard to kill the undead.
I walked to our watering hole along the shore that hasn’t changed in millennia, looking out at the misty islands and the North Shore Mountains. It’s a reassuring vista, a solid and perennial certainty, comforting in its stability and longevity. We are lucky to live where we do and are privileged to be lucky.
Camp, my stalwart and dependable drinking buddy, resident cynic, self-proclaimed sage and knower of many things, was already nursing a pint, anxiously scanning his smart phone for the latest updates and gyrations on the US election. ‘Who is winning now Camp?’ I asked, rhetorically. I felt detached after days of anxiety, drained of enthusiasm and interest. Did it really matter anymore?
Camp on the other hand was fully invested, viewing the whole process as an exercise in futility and inconsequential in the long run. He had a much more pragmatic attitude towards the whole process with a certain amount of detachment and the usual dose of cynicism, since it was literally out of his control, whereas I was stuck with introspective philosophical ramblings, unpredictable mood swings and sleepless nights.
‘One half of the electorate voted for a misogynistic, narcissistic liar and cheater and the other half chose a decent and conservative legislator, a transitional solution at best,’ Camp said. ‘But one is a zombie and the other is half alive,’ I said.
Camp gave me a quizzical look. ‘Are you alright mate? You seem a tad depressed. Better water it down with a pint. Reality is: half of the Americans chose religion over science, division over common ground, guns over dialogue, fracking and fossil fuels over renewable energy. The other half must be severally disappointed, as they were in 2016. It seems nothing much has changed. No matter the soaring covid-19 numbers and the lack of management and leadership, the disarray and disengagement in world politics and the self-serving plutocracy or should I say plutocrazy of the GOP legislators.’
‘Rural America is an intellectual black hole, a treacherous, energy sucking void of ignorance, arrogance and libertarianism,’ I said, trying hard not fall into my own black hole.
‘Easy buddy! We cannot go from a Trump nightmare into a Biden dream,’ Camp said. ‘Instead we need to wake up and face reality. Trumpism is not a sleep state, it is the stark reality of a despotic minority rule that is wholly supported by the Republican Party who can only retain their power by not acknowledging the will of all of the people but only of those people who are their own blind followers.’
‘Well, you have a point my friend, and the blind followers, as you put it, will never acknowledge defeat and come to terms with loss. They will deny and react in anger and unlike in a proper grieving process, they will never forgive or accept and seek closure.’
‘Boy, you’re in a funny mood,’ Camp said. ‘Maybe you should smoke some of that Pink Kush you grew. I hear from Muriel who’s got it from Clare that it’s some pretty fine weed.’
I had to laugh. Yeah, maybe it would help. I don’t indulge much these days. It was more of a hobby, now that’s it’s legal to grow your own. And it makes some fine stocking stuffers.’
Vicky came by with our refills and I had to point out that it was very uncanny that she predicted the election.
‘I’ m no prophet or clairvoyant,’ she laughed, ‘otherwise I wouldn’t be slinging beer at a bar but be a multiple lottery winner and successful stock investor.’ She gave our table a perfunctory wipe and said as an afterthought: ‘If they would have let Canadians and the rest of the world vote, the result would have been much clearer.’
We both drank to that.