Look, call me Cassandra, but I can already tell you who will win the election: someone with an inside edge in Washington who knows how to pander to cameras and populist sentiment whilst working hand in hand to promote their favorite corporate lobbyist.
It's that simple, there's no need for all this hoopla--the commercials, the junk mail, the news "coverage," and the polls. Oi, those polls.
My first encounter with polling was in 2004, the first presidential election I was able to vote in. A woman was going door-to-door and just caught me on my way out. She was clearly Republican; all her questions were about Republicans. The first was "Do you support the President?" Loaded much? Yes, and you're a good Amurrkan, no, and you're disloyal. After a pause I answered, "I don't support his policies" and watched as she checked the "no" box.
This time round, two have caught me on the phone. So far. It's a long way to November, after all. The first was a Republican pollster. He explained each question; the first was which candidate I would support if the election were held tomorrow. Before I knew which party he was polling for, I asked if there was a "none of the above" option. He chuckled; I ended up selecting the "Not planning on voting" option. The other questions, to their credit, weren't that loaded: which three of a list of issues were of most importance to me, and which of a range of neutrally worded options described my stance on Iraq?
Then, a Democratic pollster called, asking first if I supported So-and-so for governor. I replied that I wasn't familiar enough with his positions to make that call yet. Then, my ever favorite question: Which party do I identify with--Democrat or Republican? Argh. I asked, "Is there a neither option?" "Independent." So why not have that as an option, you nimrods?
Even though I'm not planning on voting in either the primaries or the big one in November (more on that in another post), I will answer the pollsters when they come around. I don't know what they do with their results, but I will register my voice as a discontented one.
Nine more months of this nonsense is a long time. It makes the prospect of going off to live in an isolated cabin with no connection to the outside world mighty tempting.