Politics: you can't escape 'em. Even if you're not a die-hard CNBC junkie you probably have an opinion about the 2008 Presidential election, and if you don't, well that's a political decision as well. And no matter how hard you try, affairs of state will enter into your relationship in some form or another. So whether you're thinking about discussing Sarah Palin with your new beau, aruging about voting with your old man or wondering what goes on between Barack and Michelle, YourTango's got you covered. Check out our stories below to find out about the intersection of politics and relationships.
If politics are important to you, discussing your beliefs early on in a relationship is important. Differing views shouldn't kill a bourgeoning relationship (Democrats and Republicans can get along in the bedroom and in life), but is there a stigma against those who opt out entirely? Love Buzz polled our friends and contributors to find out.
Politics makes for strange bedfellows indeed. My husband and I have been married for 21 argumentative years. Technically 10 argumentative years, until I switched my political party affiliations. We had never seen eye to eye on anything, and we rarely had the same opinion on politics. When we first met, we had rousing arguments about who should be President of the United States. We had different opinions on why past politicians did lousy jobs as president or vice president. The only issue on which we agreed was that President Ronald Reagan's trickle down theory of economics was benefiting people who were already rich.
I'm a social liberal, a product of my New England upbringing who thinks government can be run by professional Robin Hoods who redistribute wealth and carefully protect civil liberties. She is a fiscal conservative who thinks that the free market should be upheld at all costs. She's no war hawk, but she's no pacifist either. She thinks wars should be fought with hostile takeovers and marketing blitzes. I called her a robber baron, and she called me a socialist lite. They were like pet names. It's our luck that we met during the reign of Bush. We were equally disgusted by the ruling executive. Sure, we had different points of attack: I was horrified by the assault on civil liberties, while Karen was more concerned by the fiscal incompetence and costly doctrine of interventionism (she was, and still is, one of the few true isolationists I know). But we had a common enemy, and that allowed us to overlook the differences. But it was just that: an oversight.
During the vice-presidential debate, my normally peaceful relationship with my husband turned into a Soviet-era showdown. We both sat icily on opposite sides of the couch, and when I snorted at Sarah Palin's winking he glared at me. When he mumbled "lies" under his breath while Joe Biden was talking, I chucked a pillow at his head. An iron curtain has descended in relationships across the country—on one side lie McCain supporters and on the other side Obama backers. With a looming economic crisis, two wars, a crumbling health care system and the future of energy in the balance, this election has captivated our nation. Voter registration is at an all time high and pundits expect turnout to be even greater. But the cost of this intense political passion is often our relationships. Politics can highlight fundamental differences or similarities in values and character and how these issues are handled can either make or break a relationship, so when is the right time to introduce them into your relationship without destroying it?
Sex and politics? Although the combination may sound strange, the two controversial subjects met yesterday at the New York Museum of Sex. The third presidential debate aired last night on every news network and also on screens inside the New York Museum of Sex. Google News reports that, "The session of naked politics took place in a hall where dozens of TV screens only minutes earlier had been filled with quite a different kind of nudity."
As we approach the 2008 presidential election, we're naturally inquisitive about our future leader: his standpoint on the economy, his views on foreign policy and his choice of running mate. Many are also curious to know what his relationship with his wife (or potential other woman) is like. The secret love lives of our presidents are not only indicators of their character, but they can shape our values about sex and relationships as a nation.
Huffington Post has rounded up a slideshow of John and Cindy McCain showing public displays of affection. Just looking at the lack of PDA between John and Cindy, suggests the would-be president's one true passion is cutting taxes. Little pecks on the cheek here, pats on the arm there, a couple tight-lipped smiles -- the McCains are downright prudish!
It's bad enough to be single and watch happy couples being all cute in public. But now we have a PDA-prone Democratic presidential candidate to make us feel extra-lonely on those long, cold nights. Rubbing salt in open wounds, Huffington Post has rounded up a slideshow of Barack and Michelle Obama nuzzling, kissing and cuddling. The couple has already earned praise for being a model of a healthy, happy relationship. I mean, really, how in-love are these two? It's enough to melt a Republican's heart!
Back in September posts popped up on Craig's Lists job boards in various cities soliciting a "Sarah Palin look alike for adult themed video production." Yesterday The Daily News reported that Hustler was behind the ads and this morning Radar published the actual first scene of the film, which you can read here. (In a subsequent post Radar swears that the script is "100 percent genuine and not in any way made up.")
Joe and Jill Biden have a strong relationship. Jill told Time that Joe has a romantic side to him and The New York Times described him as being head-over-heels in love with his wife after 30 years of marriage. When Biden introduced his wife at the Democratic National Convention he described her as "drop dead gorgeous." No matter who wins the election this November, the Bidens will continue to be an example of how a marriage should work.
Amid all the bluster about "foreign policy experience" and "abstinence-only education," there's been one meme missing. Thankfully, the UK's Daily Mail picks up the slack by asking: Would your guy bone Sarah Palin? Even if your feminist bone is the size of your pinky finger, it's hard not to be offended by such sexist drivel as this:
Do you ever think about Laura Bush? May sound like a strange question, but it's really not: Do you ever consider what life must be like for the woman married to the most powerful man in the world? The author Curtis Sittenfeld is picking up the slack. She has parlayed a deep fascination with Laura into the 558-page novel, American Wife, which imagines the courtship and marriage of a librarian named Alice and her hard-drinking, baseball-team-owning, born-again husband Charlie Blackwell. Through good times and hardship, a doting Alice stands by Charlie's side—all the way to the White House. (Did I mention she even imagines their sex life, too?)
The United Nations estimates that 5,000 women worldwide are killed each year in the name of preserving a family's honor. The transgressions that these women commit to justify their deaths? Being raped, wearing Western clothing, marrying a man from the wrong sect or community, and communicating with men on Facebook, to name a few. Often, their brothers or fathers carry out the murders themselves. Pakistan is currently under the media lens after a member of its Parliament vindicated the mass killings of five women--three teenagers deemed guilty of dishonor after attempting to marry without their families' permission and two older women who tried to stop them from being killed--as "centuries old traditions," ones he vowed he would continue to defend.
You probably heard that news that John McCain's VP nominee Sarah Palin has a seventeen-year-old daughter, Bristol, who is pregnant and plans to marry the father. In today's New York Times there's a piece with the headline, "In Political Realm "Family Problem" Emerges as Test." Swap in the word "relationship" instead of "political," and you could be describing the experience of meeting your significant other's family. The questions in both the political and relationship realms are these: How much is someone's family a reflection of them, and should your lover's clan influence the decisions you make about him or her? In the relationship realm, someone's family probably isn't a