I am experiencing something very much like that now and I have as much insight about this behavior as I do over picking at a scab. It is driving me crazy, stressing me out, and causing nightmares. I know it is not good for me, but I can't help myself.
What is it? Reading political news and commentary, watching debates and analysis, and asking myself unanswerable questions. Worrying about the fate of our country, our place in the world, the future we are leaving our grandkids, the quality of our life in the short and long-term.....all of it.
Why? All of my scab-pulling, all my uneasiness, all my fretting will have absolutely no impact on whatever the outcome will be. Eventually things will sort themselves out and we will survive, I keep telling myself. But, that doesn't keep me from paying attention to stuff that upsets me.
Can any of us remember a time when we didn't want children watching and listening to how some of these men comport themselves on television? Has there ever been an election cycle when the leadership of the party spends $10 million in just one state (Florida) to blunt the fortunes of the person who is in the lead?
Things aren't much better on the other side of the aisle, or should I say, wall. One candidate is an avowed socialist who is very much in favor of some serious spanking of Wall Street and those who make a lot of money. I tend to agree with him that the middle and lower class in this country have been royally screwed over by the infamous 1%. But, I am not sure gutting such a key part of our economy is doable or wise.
The other candidate has the advantage of being in position to be our first female president, if all her legal issues don't get in the way. Again, I can't remember a time when someone who is one party's leading candidate is perceived to be dishonest and less than truthful by a majority of Americans.
Knowing all this, I still pick at that scab. I watch the debates of both parties and yell at the candidates and moderators for never answering the questions or asking obvious follow ups. I am embarrassed at the spectacle of grown men interrupting each other or making seriously inappropriate comments about each other.
I start each day by checking the headlines to see if something even more grotesque has happened while I slept. I watch some of the news channels around dinner time to get caught up on the latest slow motion car wreck of our political landscape. I worry about the hidden meaning of caucus results or straw polls.
Why can't I stop watching, reading, and listening? Why can't I just let it be whatever it will be? I guess it is part of the human condition to watch TV coverage of weather disasters or want the details on riots in some far-flung corner of the world. It is why disaster movies make lots of money in the theaters.
In 1976 there was one movie produced in the United States that had a super hero as the star. In 2014 there were 30. Does that say something about us and our need for someone to rescue us from our fears and insecurities? Is that why I keep hurting myself with political obsession: waiting for someone to rescue us from ourselves?
I don't know, but it is driving me 'round the bend.
|Please, be over!|