Don’t write yourself off yet. #PlagueSongs, no. 23

You look like you could use a little encouragement. Yes, you. So, I’ve recorded this version of Jimmy Eat World’s “The Middle.”

You may be thinking, yes, that’s a nice sentiment, but will everything be alright? Really? Well, that I don’t know.

But I do know this. We can work to make it better. There is nothing broken that we cannot fix.

So. Vote. Tell your friends to vote. Make calls in support of Democratic candidates. I’ve been phonebanking 6 hours a week for the past few weeks, but my approach doesn’t need to be yours. Just do what you can.

In the words of the song, do your best. Do everything you can.

If the regime tries to steal another election or refuses to concede, take to the streets. March. That’s the only way to get rid of autocrats.

Do not be intimidated by the regime. It has never been legitimate. Through its support of the regime and attacks on democracy itself, the Republican Party has forfeited its right to govern.

Indeed, as I type these words, that very same party is using the old fascist tactic of seizing control of the judiciary, in an effort to secure minority rule. The nomination of Judge Handmaiden, just like the nominations of Justice Rapist and Justice Nostalgia are all illegitimate. The “President” who appointed them “won” his presidency via treason. The party who advanced them violated precedent in denying President Obama a hearing on Merrick Garland and then violated its own recently invented rule in advancing Judge Handmaiden. All three of these seats are stolen.

In response to Republican court-packing, we must expand the courts. These whiny fascists will cry foul, but they are hypocrites interested only in their own power. They have no moral standing to cry foul. They are foul. They must be opposed at every level of government.

The Republican Party is the greatest threat to American democracy.

Should the Democrats overcome Republican voter suppression and Russian interference to gain power, the party will need to act quickly and decisively to rebuild democracy. It will need to be more vigorous and swift than it typically is. It must prosecute the criminal regime and its accomplices. Restore voting rights. Eliminate the Electoral College. Fight the pandemic sensibly. Provide relief to all who have lost jobs. Expand healthcare — which, frankly, has been the number-one issue in my own calls to voters.

All of these efforts can be blocked by a Supreme Court with three stolen seats — indeed, a court mostly appointed by presidents (and one “president”) who lost the popular vote. The court does not reflect the values of the citizens of this country. But it can.

So, let us fight on.


Oh, and, since I typically offer some information about the song in these #PlagueSongs posts, a few more words. “The Middle” remains Jimmy Eat World’s biggest hit — released in November 2001 as the second single from the band’s album Bleed American (2001). It was a top 5 hit in the US, and reached the top 30 in England, Scotland, and New Zealand.

Here’s the video, directed by Paul Fedor.

In our current context, the video looks like a super-spreader event! But back in 2001, it was merely a White lad refusing to abide by the norms of a hedonistic, very White, teen house-party. Or … will our young protagonist succumb to peer pressure? Watch until the end of the video.


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Why not perform a #PlagueSong of your own? I’ve many ideas on this playlist, and there are surely many more I’ve not considered.


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