Winter Sunlight

Untitled political fluff

Fandom: SGA
Word Count: ~900

Falling asleep last night, I was amusing myself by contemplating the political affiliation of various people on Atlantis (hey, I'm easily amused) and this happened as a result. Gen, John and Rodney bickering, no plot to speak of.




"I can't believe you're a Republican."

Rodney sounded personally affronted. John spared a moment to smirk at him before trotting up the stairs to the transporter. "That's what you get for poking around in other people's personal files, Rodney."

Rodney didn't deny it, just continued to glower as he caught up. "Seriously, I thought you had more sense than that."

"Rodney," John said patiently, "we're on a military base. I'm a ranking officer in the U.S. armed forces. What, did you expect me to be a member of the Green Party or something?"

"It's a civilian-run operation," Rodney sulked, as John tapped the infirmary on the city map.

"With a huge military presence. Besides, take a look at your side once in a while. Have you talked to Simpson about politics lately?"

"That's completely --"

"Biro?"

"Okay, I'll grant you she might be, but --"

"Parrish."

"What? Now you're totally pulling this out of your ass!"

"Kavanagh?" John winced at the look on Rodney's face. "Okay, forget that one."

"See, him, I would have guessed. But seriously," Rodney whined as he trailed John into the infirmary, "why?"

The other two teammates looked up; Keller was just removing the blood pressure cuff from Teyla's arm, finishing up her physical. Keller rolled her eyes and slid in the direction of her tray of supplies.

"I'm not gonna want to know about this one, am I?" Ronon asked quietly.

"No," Teyla said with a sigh.

The argument carried on without a break as John hopped up on the nearest gurney and rolled up his sleeve. "What do the Democrats want to do, Rodney? Cut military spending."

"Yes yes, I'll take your word for it, being as I'm Canadian and all, but your country spends far too much on its military as it is."

John snorted. "Yeah, and what's the biggest unexplained chunk of pork on the military budget right now?"

"How should I know? It's not my country. Iraq?"

"This, Rodney, you nit." John poked him in the forehead. "Us. Atlantis. You actually expect me to cast a vote that's going to get me sent home?"

"Are you even voting at all?" Rodney asked suspiciously, swatting him away.

"Well, probably not, but it's the principle of the thing. Two words, Rodney: gun control." John mimed firing a handgun into the middle distance.

"I can't believe I ever bothered speaking to you," Rodney snapped, turning his back. Unfortunately this gave him no choice but to meet the eyes of his other teammates. Ronon looked bored. Teyla looked as if any Earth human so much as mentioned the word "election" around her again, they'd have two broken arms. Rodney hastily looked away.

"Your people take this very seriously," Teyla said, with a clear subtext of Because they lack real problems, such as enemies who use them as a food supply.

"I just can't believe I actually respected you," Rodney informed John over his shoulder.

"Rodney, if you don't shut up about it, I'm putting you on Lorne's team and we'll see how you like dealing with four heavily armed Republicans instead of one."

"You're not a Republican, are you?" Rodney asked Keller morosely as she came back to draw John's blood.

Keller stared at him. "What? God, no; what do you take me for?"

"At least someone has some sense." Rodney projected an air of cheerful smugness, loudly, in John's direction.

Keller wiped down John's inner elbow with an alcohol swab. "Lifelong Democrats, my entire family, back three generations."

"You know, Doc, I hear your condition's curable," John said, grinning, and winced as she jabbed his arm for the puncture a little harder than necessary. "Ow. And while we're on the subject, I suggest you have a gurney waiting on standby for Rodney, in case he tries to discuss politics in the mess with the entire military contingent present."

"Not everyone in the military is a Republican, you know, Colonel," Keller said, briskly capping tubes of blood. "You never discussed politics with Carter, I take it."

"I try not to discuss it in general, if I can help it," John said, shooting a glare at Rodney, who was radiating little smug rays again.

"See, Sam has excellent political taste, like her taste in all other things."

"Such as her purely platonic interest in you?" John shot across his bow.

Rodney folded his arms defensively. "We're friends. Platonic friends. We have a respect that transcends mere physical attraction."

By now, Keller and Teyla were both rolling their eyes. John decided that a change of subject was probably wise, considering that one of them had a sharp object stuck in his body and the other kicked his ass on a regularly basis even without provocation. "So! Who's ready for lunch? Tuesday is fishstick day in the mess, you know."

"As soon as I get your fasting bloodwork samples drawn. Both of you," Keller announced sternly, descending on Rodney.

Rodney rolled up his sleeve, but his attention was still fixed on John. "Don't think this is over, Colonel. I plan to grill you on every one of your country's issues until you admit that you're utterly, irrevocably and in all other ways wrong."

John closed his eyes briefly in despair. Two months until the election, but it couldn't get here soon enough for him. He didn't care whether Hayes won re-election or not (it was still Hayes, wasn't it?) if certain people would just shut up about it.

"Your people really need more hobbies," Ronon said.
*lol*

Considering the mess of the election coverage these days? Yeah, this was a fun insight into what they might be thinking. :)

Besides, do the Canadians even do repubs vs. dems? I have so lost track.... (not like studying Canadian govt structure was ever covered in any class I took, because, hello! Stuck smack dab in the Midwest here. *laugh*)

Cute, I liked it and I loved Keller being a Dem in all this madness.

Thanks for the laugh, I needed it tonight! :)
Thank you! :D

Besides, do the Canadians even do repubs vs. dems?

Well, not as such - most democracies (at least AFAIK) have some sort of liberal-to-conservative or socialist-to-capitalist spectrum, but it's a little different everywhere. However, if most of the non-Americans that I know online seem to have a passing familiarity with the American political system and some sort of vested interest in its politics, it makes sense to me that Rodney would have definite and LOUD opinions on it. *g*
"Your people take this very seriously," Teyla said, with a clear subtext of Because they lack real problems, such as enemies who use them as a food supply.

Hee! Totally.
Yeah, I can totally see Teyla and Ronon watching the brief pre-election flurry of partisan madness and thinking, "Wow, do these people ever need to get a life." *g*
Heh-heh, this is a good example of why I hate politics all together. You make the mistake of announcing which party you're affiliated with and suddenly it's "You're a kind, wonderful person but I can't like you because you're Rep/Dem and, therefore, an idiot."

Poor John *pats his head while slipping him a stunner.*

Heh, yeah, the vexing nature of partisanship (and the tensions that it creates) were what prompted this story, basically. Well, that and wondering how Atlantis was dealing with those sorts of challenges. *g*
LOL! So very Rodney! (and I like Keller's reaction to being asked if she's a Republican!)

I see John as trying to avoid politics, for the most part, but it makes total sense he'd be Rep. Not just from the military, but also his personal background. His family almost certainly are.
Yeah, John totally strikes me as someone with vague conservative leanings (I think the ideal of "small/unobtrusive government + lots of guns" would totally appeal to him, plus, as you said, he was almost certainly raised that way) but he's almost totally apathetic about it these days and hasn't voted for anything in ten or fifteen years. He makes irreverent jokes about it because he keeps forgetting that other people take it a lot more seriously than he does, and then can't figure out why they get upset.

... yeah, I've probably been overthinking this. *g* It beats thinking about real politics!
Heee, this was perfect. The election can't come soon enough, then we'll have what, 15-18 months of peace until they start campaigning for 2012?
Thanks! I'm definitely looking forward to having things decided one way or another ... *g*
Hah! I agree, John as a non-voting Republican makes sense. And most foreigners these days (that I know of, though I'm not sure about Canadians specifically) tend to be Democrats-in-spirit, because the current Republican president terrifies them when it comes to the US's foreign policy.

& Teyla & Ronon's attitude makes much sense!

Though in the SGA 'verse, without Bush, they might not be quite as bi-partisan anyway? We can hope? (I think the current Red vs Blue environment worries me more than the Republicans do...)
Yeah, I think of John as a guy who doesn't really like playing the political game much at all, but when he stops to think about it, he considers himself on the conservative side. And Teyla and Ronon are totally sitting back thinking "... these people really need a REAL crisis to worry about!"

Though in the SGA 'verse, without Bush, they might not be quite as bi-partisan anyway?

Hmm, that's an excellent point! Their USA has other things to worry about (such as where all those billions of unallocated funds actually go, and what are those strange flashes in the sky, and why deployed overseas relatives keep sending letters with Colorado Springs postmarks) but the partisanship is probably much less...

(Hee! No Bush! There's a reason to move to the Stargateverse! XD)
ROTFLOL

Yeah, I bet the government in the Stargate universe has even more budget problems. Not to mention that they must look totally ridiculous with whatever the cover stories for both the spending and the periodic alien invasions are. OTOH they probably could generate secret income from the technology or exploration that covers some, so that it's entirely in hidden funds. That'll only backfire once they have to go public, as it's kind of the opposite from transparent government.

Edited at 2008-09-05 05:59 am (UTC)
Hee! The government in their universe must employ mafia accountants to help them make all those billions of dollars look rational on paper! I can only imagine the weird projects that are supposedly sucking down all that money! Though you're right, that it seems as if the government is happily generating its own income from alien technology (as in the episodes that dealt with the nanotech company).

Somebody needs to write a dystopian AU where the US government goes totally darkside with all of this power. *g* I mean, they basically have their own income independent of the taxpayers, they have all of these astonishing weapons -- I'm thinking "1984" is only a few years around the corner!
I am very, very amused! *g* Too early to be coherent, but - hee, Teyla!
I think Teyla is wondering why in the world she ever thought these people were capable of saving the galaxy. XD Come to think of it, she probably wonders that a lot ...
Hee! I loved this, especially Ronon and Teyla's reactions, and Rodney's amazement at John as well. Politics almost never make it into fic, other than in Sorkin shows, and I kind of miss it. It's a very cool insight into characters' minds.

I've always pictured John (and most of the Atlantis military) as Republican - not agreeing with them on all the issues, but with the ones that are most important for him.

It's weird getting into a character you love's head without agreeing with their core beliefs. I know that I keep trying to get into Ziva's head, but I know, know that in RL she'd be right wing, possibly even extreme right wing, and just getting into her POV would mean showing that, whether I'm discussing politics or not. (Just as uncomfortable for me to write a religious character, as an atheist. I usually end up making characters atheists as well.)
Thank you!

I think TV shows often tend to avoid discussing their characters' political or religious beliefs because they don't want to alienate any groups of viewers. It produces a weird, sanitized sort of version of reality, though, because of course, in real life people talk about that sort of thing all the time; it colors everything they do. I do like this sort of story as a window onto the characters' minds. I wish that SGA's general format and genre allowed for more of this sort of thing.

It's weird getting into a character you love's head without agreeing with their core beliefs. I know that I keep trying to get into Ziva's head, but I know, know that in RL she'd be right wing, possibly even extreme right wing, and just getting into her POV would mean showing that, whether I'm discussing politics or not. (Just as uncomfortable for me to write a religious character, as an atheist. I usually end up making characters atheists as well.)

It's tricky! I think I've become much better at writing characters whose convictions differ from my own as I've gotten older -- and, actually, this is one area where fanfic has really helped me, because the characters come with a pre-packaged set of personality traits and beliefs, some of which invariably will differ from my own. I usually feel like I'm doing something wrong if I end up writing a character who agrees with me on everything. *g* Part of the fun inherent in writing, for me, is doing justice to a viewpoint different from my own. I'm not sure if people generally assume that my characters' views represent my own, but, while I'm sure it's true to some extent, it's not always true. I like to work with a group of characters who have a variety of viewpoints, and there are many times when I write about a situation where I actually disagree with how the characters handle it -- but I have to write them doing what they think is best, not what I think is best.

For some reason, despite being a lifelong atheist, I don't seem to find it difficult to write religious characters. I think it's probably more comfortable and easier for me to slip into a character who's either openly atheistic or doesn't every think about religion much, but there are a few characters that I actually like to write because I get to do a point of view that is much more religious/spiritual than my own outlook (e.g. Teyla). I don't think I've ever pushed myself to write a sympathetic portrayal of a deeply religious character, though, someone for whom religion colors even their minor everyday actions. Hmm...
"Your people take this very seriously," Teyla said, with a clear subtext of Because they lack real problems, such as enemies who use them as a food supply.

I love this bit

*g* I totally think Ronon and Teyla would react to the Earthlings' obsession with politics the way we do to someone who has, say, devoted their life to collecting different kinds of teaspoons: sort of a combination of amusement and a horrified "Wow, you're taking this really seriously, aren't you?"
I experienced some dissonance while reading this simply because in any McShep fic I've read that mentions politics, John is a Democrat all the way.

The fact that it's McShep is of course the reason why (though even with that way of thinking he could be Log Cabin Republican). But as I'd never seen him presented with a Republican affiliation it was weird to see that for the first time.

You've convinced me that he'd think Republican regarding the military, but I'm not convinced he'd take the Republican stance on gun control. Always carrying a gun in the Pegasus Galaxy, or when he's back on Earth WORKING is one thing, believing that all Americans (barring those in teh exception laws) have a right to carry a gun is something else. Having said that, I'm not convinced either way. As you said above, SGA isn't into having political discussions (at least - not textually) other than the one about capital punishment in "Condemned", so it's hard for me to decide for myself without the sway of fanon.
Hee! That actually had something to do with me writing this, because John pings me so strongly as a politically-apathetic conservative that stories which depict him as a politically-active Democrat seem OOC to me. It reads to me like the author imposing their own political affiliation on the character, and it makes me twitch.

John being a "hands off my guns" type of guy totally works for me, but it's certainly also possible that he was just saying that to wind up Rodney. *g*
"Your people take this very seriously," Teyla said, with a clear subtext of Because they lack real problems, such as enemies who use them as a food supply.


Wonderful!
LOL!! You made a subject I have a passing interest in (I'm not overly interested in my own country's politics, though I have to make an effort every so often so as to vote!) into something that was a lot of fun!!

I love Teyla and Ronon's view on it all (especially Ronon's last line *g*)!! And the banter, oh the banter!!

"Ow. And while we're on the subject, I suggest you have a gurney waiting on standby for Rodney, in case he tries to discuss politics in the mess with the entire military contingent present."

Which is entirely possible that Rodney would do!! *g*
*g* Glad you liked it! I do think Teyla and Ronon would be quite bemused by the whole thing ...
You know, one of the things a fair number of militarily oriented Republicans always seem to leave out is that it was Democrats who funded the atom bomb, Pentagon, and what was that, directly related to being in another galaxy? Oh yeah, created the space program.

What can I say? Just 'cause we're liberal doesn't mean we don't like our toys and snazzy buildings. :)
Oh yes - this is definitely true. *g* Politics is always way more complicated than the water-cooler discussions suggest...
Teyla looked as if any Earth human so much as mentioned the word "election" around her again, they'd have two broken arms.

LMAO! That is so me right now! XD I've started drawing comparisons between this election and Head of State to amuse myself.