And so it begins anew.

I came back online last week. I’ve not posted, though. I wish I could say that it’s because I’ve been busy, but that’s only partly true. The main reason is that I’ve just felt overwhelmed lately by the present state of affairs in America and the world.

It feels like trying to dig yourself out of a mountain of shit with a toy shovel, while every shovelful of shit you manage to displace results in many times that amount being added in its place.

The sheer mendacity and malevolence of the Republican Party is only to be expected. Is it not John McCain’s daily lies, but that so many Americans are prepared to believe them. It is not the shallow Christian corruption of Sarah Palin, but that so many Americans have been distracted by McCain’s new shiny thing. Polls now show a tight presidential race: how could this be? Are people so blind? Are they so stupid? Are they so evil?

Sure, it might not be that way if not for the fecklessness of the Democrats. Barack Obama has had so many chances to prove himself the better candidate (and, next to McCain, he remains such), but he has failed again and again. Once he got the nomination, another Obama arose to take the place of the first one. For me, it was his vote on the FISA bill that did it. I swore after that that he had lost my vote; if McCain were not such a fucking mess, that might still be true.

For the record, I have been unimpressed by Obama and the Democratic Party since that fateful vote. Obama is not a “progressive”, nor is he a “leftist” or a “socialist” or a “Marxist”. I am all of those things, to varying degrees, and he can only disappoint. I am also an atheist, and the Democratic embrace of religiosity at the DNC did not go over well with me. Like we needed anymore, that was just more evidence that the Democrats are “Republicans-lite”; there is no left-wing in American politics.

It’s enough to make you want to throw up your hands and walk away from it in disgust. We Americans live in the wealthiest country in the world, which shares far too many vital statistics in common with third-world countries. If this election goes the wrong way, then that will be it for America’s relevance in the world; the country at that point will exist only to be feared and hated, to fear and hate.

John Edwards always talked about “two Americas”. I never really liked Edwards, but at least I can say that that precluded any disappointment on my part regarding his affair. He was right about the “two Americas” thing, though. How can you tell the difference between the two? One of them doesn’t have to surrender their civil rights to get on an airplane.

So, this has been my “back from hiatus” post. Not quite as brief as I had originally intended, but it got the job done. Now I can write without having to explain my absence (though I will do that soon).