INKED! Post-election hangover is a messy affair

The chaos, anger and, ultimately, the sadness so apparent in the afterglow of this election — presidential and otherwise — is far worse than anything that preceded it.

At least when it was ongoing the crazy rhetoric and bile spewed from all ideological ends could be chalked up to the obligatory carnival-barking that occurs when one side is trying to stand apart from the other, when issues are no longer enough and showmanship has to cut through the endless noise.

There were a few occasions when pundits with a pretty good body of work behind them, making a pretty tight case, claimed that the rancor between the Obama and Romney camps and their supporters was decidedly issue-based, and did not veer into attacks on faith and associations and birth rites, among the other personal issues that often rear their ugly heads.

Yet what you have in the aftermath is an unhealthy combination of anger, true intentions and a lack of all pretext and decorum that at least kept some of the nastiness in check, to a degree.

We all wanted the election and the politics of division to go away Wednesday morning, but what we have had — at least through the end of the week thus far — is braggadocio and bitterness, some false pride and some true hate.

These are not new concepts, and the lingering resentments with emotional losses and the chest-thumping that comes with big wins have hung around post-election probably through the history of the democratic process.

But they’ve never had a bigger stage, a more endless, quick-hitting, venomous theatre as they do in 2012, where average Joes and celebrities, media pundits and policy analysts, where authors, artists and auto mechanics can take to Twitter, Facebook or dial in to the clearly partisan 24-hour news networks to have their pain or pompous satisfaction satiated and given an extended life.

It’s been ugly so far, and it has nothing to do with being a Democrat or a Republican. In fact, much of this is just the turning of the worm; Democrats had just as much anger left over after George W. Bush won a second term, as the Republicans have for Obama’s coming second term.

Liberals threatened one-way tickets to an expatriated existence in places like France after Bush took office for his final term. The fact that Republicans, Libertarians and Obama nonbelievers will threaten something similar is not surprising.

The difference has been the vehicle of delivery, the speed and intensity to blast out some serious hate in 140 characters or less with no filter or the ability to walk it back once it’s out there.

Twitter is the worst medium ever, for any type of opinion-based thought, really. Countless celebrity and media personalities have taken the opportunity to weep and cry and mourn for America in the wake of Obama’s re-election.

With the longer-form postings of Facebook, these opinions can be given more weight with added context, or less weight with an apparent lack of knowledge. What Twitter does that’s different is distill everything to some wild-eyed, manic pathway right into a sociopathic brain, or so it seems.

Seek out these post-election tweets, but beware. They’re kind of depressing, and surprising that people would really say this often perverse stuff.

The reality is, much of what I’m referring to is the Obama-bashing. And that’s to be expected, since he just won. Liberals and Democrats would have been doing the same thing if we were awaiting Romney’s move in to the White House. It’s the nature of man, amplified by the technology at our fingertips.

Today we have the worst kind of presidential election hangover possible — there’s the guilt, the resentment, the regret, wondering where we go from here, but there’s the added problem of still being a bit drunk from the night before. We’re drunk tweeting and texting, when we should still be sleeping it off and choosing our initial comments carefully.

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