Wednesday, May 07, 2008

I’m White I’m Working Class And I Love Barack

"You're born with nothing, and better off that way. Soon as you've got something they send someone to try and take it away. Nothing is forgotten or forgiven, when it's your last time around, I got stuff running 'round my head that I just can't live down" Bruce Springsteen

I’m the sort of voter that the pundits and gender politics aficionados say Barack Obama needs. White male working class fly by the seat of your pants lunch bucket, beer swilling “yellow dog” Democrats. As in I’d vote for a yellow dog if it were a democrat. Or at least I have been a working class white guy most of the better part of my adult life having put in 25 years at a 9 to 5 somewhat unfulfilling job of pushing paper around a small cubical while also being the shop steward representing my fellow workers there on the job.

Fighting with management for me was second nature and a distraction from the kind of inauthentic nothingness work product that I was responsible for promulgating on a daily basis. Plus it was a form of keeping the faith with my dead labor leader Irish Catholic father who's father had also come from a long line of born troublemakers. But, of course, I mean that in a good way.

To think I used to have these seemingly endless meetings with management where we discuss the meaning of things like abusing one's sick leave. I was always sandbagging mode with these pinheaded management types while simultaneously thinking that my father would be on heavy rotation in his grave should I not go to the mat if necessary with these Republican tools of the ruling class. I wasn’t well like by my bosses. I took pride in it because you can tell a lot about a person by the asses they will kiss in order to just get by.

Before putting in the 25 years worth of hump days I did lots of even dirtier little jobs like driving taxis, loading airplanes, washing dishes and digging holes in the ground. Let’s just say I’m more qualified to talk about it then Hillary Clinton would like to have you think she is qualified to talk about it. God I hate a phony. I stopped throwing back shots like Hillary Clinton did to demonstrate her kinship with us salt of the earth folks years ago because like many of my ilk I sort of threw too many of them back to the point that it almost killed me a couple of times. Sometimes I think Bill Clinton probably swills too much white wine, because it may explain all the finger pointing and gaffs. But when your privileged you tend be able to get away with it longer. Real working class guys who have drinking problems lose their shirts and end up on the TV programs like Cops instead of on Meet The Press with Tim Russert.

Some mornings I’d get up and come close to emotionally slitting my wrists before having the first cup of coffee and getting past the I hate my job barrier that lots of working class people confront each and everyday of their life that they get up and have to go to work, and that was before I went to rehab for the first time. Remarkably that feeling persisted for years when I look back on it. But there were bills and mortgages to pay. You know the drill if your one of us working class white guys. After 25 years of so of this I decided that it be better to retire early and walk out of the job under my own power with a smaller pension instead of being carried out strapped to a gurney. So I did. Probably the best decision I ever made.

Thankfully, the job never real got my soul.

After years of dealing with this type of shit I can pretty much tell a phony when I see one apart from a more authentic personality. So this is what moved me to Obama over Clinton in the first place. I liked the fact that he threw in with the working class way back when, becoming a community organizer in Chicago for 6 years helping disenfranchised steel workers. When he talks about worker dignity, entitlement and economics he sounds totally authentic to me like he knows from his own personal experiences. It’s not just some trumped up intellectual exercise to sound or look good like you know who.

It bothers me that other working stiffs like me apparently don’t see it. The fact that this fellow Obama would be OUR champion in the white house to me is obvious. He’d not sell us, and the rest of the hemisphere’s workers, down the river like Bill and Hillary did pushing NAFTA down our throats without any labor or environmental standards.

So I hope my fellow workers will wake up and ask themselves if they think Hillary is liable to say anything she thinks you want to hear to get your vote and isn’t Obama the real friend and advocate I’ll need in Washington looking after my interest as a working class person. My working class radar tell me he's really the man for the job.

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