15 November 2006: America’s True-Blue Values

America’s true blue values revealed

Good morning, America, how are you? Due in part to true blue voters in Clear Creek, the hue of the new day’s sunrise is no longer Republican pink. Except for those running unopposed, no Republican fared well locally; Bill Ritter led the Democratic sweep, providing coattails for other Democrats.

On the social issue ballot initiatives, Clear Creek voters showed they are open minded: the Domestic Partnership referendum and the marijuana legalization amendment got thumbs up, while the vote to prostitute the state constitution one more time with the Marriage Amendment went down as it did in most of the contiguous counties along the Continental Divide. From Routt to La Plata County, a progressive swath has emerged, indicating a more sophisticated, enlightened, and tolerant citizenry up here. For sure, Colorado’s purple mountain majesty has shaded blue.

Nationwide, one wonders if the Republican insurgency is in its last throes. By the embarrassed faces of those who got thumped—as George Bush phrased it—by their “Defeato-crat” nemeses, Republicans were seen seeking places to hide and lick their wounds. The Democrats were the Karate Kids to the Republicans’ playground bullies. Wax on, wax off. See ya, wouldn’t want to be ya. Now Karl Rove can spend his time and energy defending himself in the lawsuit brought by Valerie Plame for outing her as a CIA agent. Along with Rummy, it seems his services are no longer needed.

As I posited few months back, the Age of Conservatism is dead. A wooden stake has been driven into its heart with the sun’s rays causing the cadaver to melt away like Vlad the Impaler’s corpse. Rightwing pundits and Republican true-believers argue America remains, nevertheless, a conservative nation—that the Republican rout was due to their straying from conservative values. In fact, America is more of a Puritanical social-welfare state. Americans like to believe they are exceptional, uniquely blessed by God, and hold to the value of hard work and personal responsibility. But that Puritanism is balanced with a pragmatic sensibility that prefers an active governmental role in such areas as Social Security, Medicare, and environmental protection

Back to Clear Creek, it would be good to hear from those who voted against 1A, the open space tax. It simply doesn’t make sense. Questions abound. Was it due to an aversion to any tax proposal no matter the reason or to the lack of knowledge or disapproval of its specifics? Does this vote, along with the overwhelming thumbs down voters in both Georgetown and Idaho Springs gave their towns’ tax increase requests, suggest a general lack of faith in their political leaders to spend the money appropriately? Or, are we just tighter than a drum with our dollars? It seems Clear Creek voters have been quite reluctant over the past few years to increase their tax load even by the tiniest bit.

My gut feeling is 2A in Georgetown lost due to the citizenry understanding it was a bad plan and 1A simply got overwhelmed by the number of issues on the ballot. Like the Georgetown usage tax that was voted down in 2005, 1A was a no-brainer. Perhaps 2007 would be an optimum time to place the usage tax and 1A once again before the voters for reconsideration.

On another note, I’d like to lay claim to prophet status when last time I penned “gay fundamentalists and hetero agnostics,” but I really had no conscious knowledge of Ted Haggard’s impending ordeal. The good reverend does have a lot of work to do with coming to grips with his reality and in atoning for offenses he has committed towards the GLBT community. My fear, however, is that he will continue to live in denial and submit to the goofy and dangerous “restoration process” that claims to changes one’s sexual orientation. Nonetheless, the Haggard Affair has ripped the veneer of righteousness from the Religious Right, exposing it for the hypocritical and judgmental movement it is. After Mark Foley and now Ted Haggard, one wonders how deep goes the iceberg of anti-gay gay Republicans?

Finally, the latest edition of the Nation, lists 10 steps to ensuring democracy in America including establishing a national election holiday and standards and funding elections with public money. Imagine a world with no more attack ads. Most of us wouldn’t feel blue seeing that happen. Still, lots of work to do before 2008; but all in all, a great time to take pride in one’s Americanism—proving that ultimately the people are the deciders.

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