Journal: News & Comment

Wednesday, November 03, 2004
# 9:58:00 AM:

Cracking a beer

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Rather than stressing over the election contest across the border last night, I went with a friend and his father-in-law to see Team America: World Police, which seemed an appropriate film for the occasion. Then I came home, looked at the numbers, cracked a beer (something I rarely do—Canadian beer, by the way), and went to bed, to find things hadn't changed for the better overnight.

With high voter turnout and a majority of both the popular vote and the electoral college, George W. Bush's victory in yesterday's U.S. election may be narrow, but it is clear. Most American voters looked back at the past four years and decided that Bush is, on balance, leading them where they want to go. I think most of us outside the U.S.A., and many within, looking back at the same four years, don't understand that decision at all.

Late last night, Dori and Tom in California wrote that "We feel that we no longer recognize our country." For me, it's like seeing an old friend turn from vibrant and friendly to cold and bitter—and (finally, belatedly, woefully) being able to acknowledge the change, because of how hard and unwelcoming their face has become.

I hope now that the next four years, and the years after that, are better than I fear they might be.


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