The Political Poem
By Kenneth J. Wolf (8/12/92)
A conversation about politics gets most people uptight,
When you start talking about the left and the right.
I remember the first time I discovered the game,
And thinking it was more interesting than a beautiful dame.
A lighthearted study can make it seem fun,
I've always preferred thinking to shooting a gun.
(I say the word "gun" softly when liberals are near,
`Cause gun control is an issue which to them is very dear).
A conservative is a man who is happy with life,
As long as every other man has some kids and a wife.
But the man who is different and doesn't hold to his view
Is considered a radical who belongs in a zoo.
It's exciting to watch political opposites clash,
Within five minutes, the topic turns to "who has the cash."
"Survival of the fittest" is the right winger's creed,
Just hearing such talk makes the liberal's heart bleed.
"Though I'm not a socialist," the knee-jerk liberal will say,
"`Laissez-faire capitalism' is not the best way.
"Karl Marx had the right idea when he uttered his creed,
`From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs'."
This kind of conflict goes on for awhile,
Until the charges and rhetoric have created a pile.
But what some, looking on, fail to understand,
This is the talk of a free people in a free land.
Second to money, the subject which generates the most heat
Is a three letter word progressives want to do in the street.
Most everyone agrees sex is healthy and fun:
The divisive question is "With many or with one?"
Conservatives argue, "Only heterosexual monogamous acts."
As usual, liberals don't agree with the conservatives' Biblical facts.
The liberal cries out, "Do it with one or with many"
And "It's my business if my partner's name is Penny or Benny."
Old-fashioned traditionalists aren't afraid to declare,
"Actions have consequences!" with a self-righteous stare.
Libertines get angry when moral types strut.
With control of the press, the libs verbally kick butt.
Control of the press is a luxury of the left,
Leaving those on the right forlorn and bereft.
But ask mossback conservatives why the media is not theirs,
And they look at you with the most dumbfounded stares.
Oh, I think I know the answer to that paradox,
Conservatives have to spend a lot of money for locks --
Locks which safeguard their material wealth
Which they have accumulated for the interest of self.
I know liberals also love money... don't think I'm a ding dong,
But they are more willing to spend some "trying to right every wrong."
The bending of minds and reality is their stock-in-trade;
Their utopian vision requires a past which must fade.
If conservatives and liberals were all that we had,
The political landscape would be fairly well clad;
But at least two other factions share the land,
Libertarian and populist are the names on each brand.
"Total freedom from government," is the libertarian's cry.
This creed nearly makes him an anarchistic guy.
Free markets without Big Brother would satisfy him,
As long as we can also fulfill our every sexual whim.
When a libertarian discusses economics, conservatives smile,
But when our bodies are the issue, he's a liberal for awhile.
He claims, "Pure anarchy is not wanted by his kind,"
But reduction of government in any area suits him just fine.
The populist, on the other hand, is a simpler breed.
"The little guy is getting the shaft", is the heart of his creed
"Too much wealth in the hands of a few," is his constant plea,
The system has been fixed against you and against me.
More government regulation of the economy would solve many ills,
Redistribute the wealth, so we can all pay our bills.
Bigger government can be the peoples' best friend,
The liberals are political brothers in achieving this end,
But populists and liberals fight like cats and dogs,
With "traditional American values," the conversation bogs.
The populist would also use big government to do
The regulating of the individual behavior of me and of you.
This puts populists and conservatives in the same boat:
With social and moral issues, they both stay afloat.
But "morally sinking the country" they both agree,
Are the liberals and libertarians, at the bottom of the sea.
Now the last question which we've failed to address
Is why Americans hate politics, which may be anybody's guess.
But America has two parties, not four or even three,
Trying to keep all these political factions happy.
Conservatives and libertarians are fighting to see
Which individualists will control the Republican Party.
The collectivist Democrats' internal struggle never passes.
Liberals and populists are always battling for the party of the asses.
All of this political friction keeps America healthy:
We'll always have the immoral as well as the wealthy.
As long as we limit our politics to parties of two,
It will seem a ball of confusion to me and to you.
This political poem is not meant to shame,
But rather to describe the players in the game.
Politics is a compromise, it's a game of give and take.
No one can say it is a simple piece of cake.
Liberal, conservative, libertarian and populist too,
One of them is me and another is probably you.
"The political scales are balanced -- if you're not sure, don't bother it;
If you don't know where you stand by now, you're probably a moderate.