Krist Novoselic (former bassist of Nirvana) appeared at a book signing last night at Powell's on Burnside to speak of needed electoral reforms and his new book "Of Grunge & Government: Let's Fix this Broken Democracy!" But it didn't take long for Chris to reveal his true allegiance, which was to be a shrill for the Democratic party.
Being a long time Nirvana fan (largely because they rejected everything corporate and did things the way they wanted to, rather than following the usual formula for monetary success in the music world),
I was very happy to hear that one of my all-time favorite bands had someone who was advocating the type of electoral reforms that I see as being necessary if recapturing representative government will ever be possible in the "current bought and sold duopoly" that now reigns supreme in the United States.
Krist began his talk by talking about his upbringing and how music introduced him to a whole new way of approaching the world. He advocated the need for instant runoff voting and proportional representation and went on to provide a plan for implementing these reforms through the creation of "super districts". He compared our Democratic framework to the hardware of a computer system and our electoral system to an "operating system" and went on to say that while our CPU is just fine, but we are using a operating system that can only be compared to 1980's DOS.
But then a very strange thing happened.
Krist began to stump for John Kerry.
The usual predictable preaching of "voting for your fears" instead of with your conscience, was followed by more fear mongering about how third parties were responsible for putting Bush in office.
It didn't make sense to me, because here you have a man who understands the need for instant runoff voting and major sweeping electoral reforms, but who is now advocating we maintain the very status quo that he claims these electoral reforms are designed to address???
During the Q&A that followed, I challenged him directly about why he aligns himself with a party that has done everything to block the electoral reforms he advocates, but he seemed taken aback and somewhat confused.
As he struggled to answer my challenge, more people in the audience began to challenge his call to support the duopoly and he began to unravel.
It became obvious that Krist (while good intentioned) was in way over his head on a subject he did not know very much about. He became emotional and told one lady that she better be prepared to lose her right to an abortion!
People began to walk out.
I was very disappointed and felt like I had been lured to this book signing under the guise of creating and forcing much needed change, but was awoken to the same ol tired rhetoric about the need to vote for the lesser of two evils.
Somehow I think Kurt would be turning over in his grave!