Comics and Politics (or, why I love Warren Ellis’s Transmetropolitan)

Hey, folks!  John here.  As is often the case in the world of weblogging (I refuse to use the word “blogosphere” in a serious capacity), when you think you have a great idea for a rant or post, someone has usually beaten you to it.  In this case, I would like to direct your attention to a fantastic article from Hero Sandwich that combines two issues that are very important to me right now: Tomorrow’s Presidential election and Transmetropolitan, my all-time favorite comic series.  Go read the article right now, before you finish this post.  Go ahead, I’ll be here when you get back.

* * *

Done?  Excellent.  I’m not sure if I agree with Scottslemmons’ appraisal of Spider at the end, though, because I am pretty comfortable in my assumption that Spider would want everyone to vote.  More than that, he would want everyone to actually think about their decision and vote accordingly, rather than voting for one candidate or another by default.  As Scottslemmons says,

“you should care enough for your country that you give some actual thought into who deserves your vote the most. Not who yer momma wants you to vote for, not who your neighbor wants you to vote for, not who the babbling buffoons on TV want you to vote for. Vote like a grownup — like an honest grownup, not some delusional ‘I’ll believe whatever bulldada a politician tells me so I can feel good about myself’ nitwit – and not a freakin’ sheep.”

I couldn’t agree more with him here, though it’s entirely possible that I’m as guilty of being one-sided in my information-gathering as the freakin’ sheep he refers to.  Perhaps a diet of MSNBC, The Daily Show and Air America Radio is just as unhealthy as one of FOX News and any conservative talk station (thank goodness for CNN and The Daily Beast, which keep me from falling completely over the leftward cliff!), but I’d like to think that the initial research I did on each candidate’s platform during the primaries has continued to serve me well.  Perhaps I’m mistaken, but I believe that the best way to make a political decision is to start by finding the candidate whose platform most closely matches your own.  From there, you can decide if the candidate is credible and/or likeable enough (and if s/he’s not, move down to the next best fit on your list.)  Whichever method you choose to guide your decision, please don’t take it lightly.  This could be the most important election of our (possibly dramatically shortened) lives.  If Spider Jerusalem taught us anything, it’s that people don’t like making hard decisions and will believe the easiest thing they’re told, whether it’s true or not.  You have to fight that urge to be complacent and take control of your government, or it could take complete control of you (and you may not like what it makes you do.)

Vote on Tuesday!  And if you’re looking for something to read while you’re on the voting line, you could do a heck of a lot worse than Transmetropolitan. (The election story kicks off in Volume 3, so I’d recommend starting there.)

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