by Steve Bogira
If Barack Obama wins, I'm still flying to Canada. I'm visiting a friend in Montreal, and the timing is coincidental.
I did consider a Canada escape once, but that was several decades ago. It was option number two, after conscientious objector—but then the draft ended and took me off the hook. I was happy about that, because Canada is cold.
Our weekly Bleader theme is "dread"—we're following the Day of the Dead with the Week of the Dread. Yesterday, my colleague Tal Rosenberg explained why. Whoever wins today will face daunting problems, and probably another implacable Congress.
But I'm not dreading things. For starters, I voted for Obama, and he's likely to prevail. If Romney wins, it'll be a setback for the domestic causes I care most about. But the sun will come up tomorrow. Romney's not the devil incarnate. (That's Gingrich.) The implacable Congress will limit the damage. There will be damage for sure, especially in the Supreme Court. We'll be worse off, but we'll survive; we survived Nixon and Reagan and W.
If Obama wins, he might be a little bolder in a second term. I don't expect it, but you never know.
We have a stodgy political system, and the influence of money makes it stodgier all the time. So no matter who's in office, I don't anticipate Washington making the bolder liberal changes I wish for—at least not until the electorate gets bolder and more liberal. The Occupy movement, even with its flaws, is more reason for hope than anything I've seen lately in elective politics. And though Occupy seems to be in hiatus, maybe it will return in the spring even stronger and larger and with the structure it needs.
I realize I may be in denial. Dread may be a useful state of mind at times, but I don't see much percentage in it. You make the most with the hand you're dealt, as we've learned here at the Reader, and you keep your chin up, because persistent gloom is tiring.