I've been watching a lot of the early seasons of The West Wing this past week. It's my last week of unemployment, so I'm relaxing in front of my new tv watching some of the best tv writing ever done. Seriously. Aaron Sorkin, the series creator and writer, is so good in the first two seasons of the show that I want to give up. Good writing, it is said, can inspire the same in others. Unless it's so good that it makes you want to cry. That's what Sorkin did in those first two seasons. It's painfully beautiful writing. I could take the equivilent of writing steroids and not come close to what he did there.
There's a bit in the first season where Josh and Joey are having an arguement and Josh misunderstands something Joey is signing (Joey is a pollster who happens to be deaf. Josh is deputy chief of staff, for those who never watch the show). Instead of "The voice of the people is the voice of God", well, he accidentally turns God into a dog. It's a quick laugh and the writing quickly snaps onto something else.
But I guess four days into the election the people's voice isn't feeling very godly. It is, in fact, giving me a headache, much in the same way a howling dog does.
One good thing about being in Iqaluit is that I don't have to listen VOCM's open line shows. Under the best of circumstances I didn't like them. During elections, I loathe them. They were an insult to any reasonable person's intelligence. Everyone knows the shows become flooded with politicians and their hacks. So why would you bother to listen? I wanted to pitch the radio out the window.
I think I'm beginning to feel the same way about political blogs. In their defence, I guess it's a good thing to be passionate and involved in politics. Too few are. But who are they talking to? Because I honestly don't know. Too many of the Conservative blogs just bash the Liberals, there is nothing good the Liberals can do and anyone who disagrees with them is wrong. And vice versa, of course.
But the level of the debate - it terms of its nastiness, technical jargon, smugness and spin - makes it utterly worthless to anyone who is undecided. Both sides seem determined to do little more than yell at the other. I honestly don't know who they're trying to convince. Because no sane person would read them hoping to get an idea of who to vote for.
I like Ed and Liam, but I don't know how much longer I'll keep reading their blogs. I'm getting a headache. It's not a debate on which party and ideas are best to run Canada...it's about winning points, dragging up old grudges and having bragging right at the end.
It is, and I say this with respect to the intelligence of both men, boring as hell.
I don't know who I'm voting for yet. I'll figure it out. I've got plenty of time. But I really doubt I'll be finding any answers in the blogosphere. So I think I'll keep watching the West Wing for the next few weeks. Sure, it's U.S. politics and not Canadian. Sure, it's biased. But the writing is stunning, passionate and I never feel like I'm having my intelligence insulted or that I'm being yelled at.
Find me some of that writing in Canada and I'll listen. Until then, the next time I check the blogosphere for answers, I'd best take some asprin first.
Last 5 on iPod
1. The engine driver - The Decemberists (Picaresque)
2. Runaway - Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies (Blow in the Wind)
3. Bottomless pit - Colleen Power (Lucky You Are)
4. Live it up - Bowling For Soup (Goes to the Movies)
5. She's got her ticket - Tracy Chapman (Collection)