We watched the economy collapse in 2008, and Atlas shrugged as five years later most of the major firms responsible for the running our economy like a Ponzi scheme remain open, soluble, and are still turning a huge profit on the commodities market. Nothing they did was illegal. There was no crime here. There is no crime here. Sad, but no amount of protesting with #occupy scrawled on my scrotum will change the fact that the laws proposed to prevent predatory lending were either repealed or never passed. The people responsible for our financial mess got rich, many of us stayed the same, a lot got screwed, and we all ended up paying for it. Our tax dollars in the trillions were taken for corporate welfare. Who is John Galt?
Now hurtling towards default on a crazy clown car filled with asshats, I find myself oddly giddy about the prospect. Fuck it let it all burn, and watch the ashes settle over a nice glass of scotch. Sadly my post-apocalyptic dream where Louie Gohmert and his ragtag team of road warriors lead use the rest of us like gimps for sexual pleasure, will never happen… not even figuratively. At the end the crisis will be averted by some half assed deal that no one truly likes, and we will have another 3 months of ignorance before returning to the wedded bliss of another go-round on the crazy train. I have little faith in change, and unlike some of my friends, even less in the idea of collapse. Sadly politics is never actually as exciting as “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.” There is bloviating, but never any progress. Gone is the Greatest generation, or even a good generation, what we are left with is a piddling pile of swindlers and scum, that take turns spinning platitudes nowhere near reality. People said I would become more conservative with age moving to the middle. Sadly politics no longer requires a middle, and nothing good ever happens there anyways. Just a bitter pill we all swallow till we get to cheer for another election. The country is stuck in a quagmire of political cheerleading.
The liberal news (Huffington post in particular) has basically started a doomsday clock with a countdown to the end of days. Apparently there is an apocalypse coming. The world will burn and every quote no matter how out of context or unattributable is sacrosanct. The Right Wing suffering from schizorphrenia has been both blaming the democrats, and implying that the government being on a diet is a good thing. Following a right wing source is kind of like watching a fat kid gorge himself on cake and then sob hysterically that you forced him to do it.
The problem with the shutdown is that it does not portray these Champions of free enterprise, these Captains of Industry, these great Atlas’s as the pioneers of the US economy. It shows them for the petulant children we all know they are. The debate that started about Obamacare pivoted to entitlements in general, and there finally we have the underlying narrative, a narrative pushed over and over again, “we must all contribute.” See the republican strategy has hinged on the concept that there is no justice for the working man. That everyone from billionaire to gas station attendant is somehow equally getting overly taxed to support poor lazy freeloaders who have no desire to work. Statistically speaking of course the “Welfare Queen” argument is an outlier at best, and race baiting at worst. According to the Department of Labor, Welfare fraud sits firm at 2.67%. This is irrelevant however since statistics don’t yell incoherently into a camera about “Obamaphones!” It’s not easy to get 2.67% to be a sound bite, or a news clip. Yet Glenn Beck managed to mention Obamaphones in a rant just two days ago. The Obamaphone conspiracy, for those of you not privy, is a made up concept that Obama is giving free cellphones to welfare fraudsters. None of this is of course true, and the program — which was started under Reagan to give landline phone service to poor families in order to help them get jobs — is entirely subsidized by cellphone companies. Facts be damned though, Glenn who famously suggested in September of 2008 that not only was the Bank Bailout AKA “Corporate Welfare” necessary, but that it was “not nearly enough” descends on actual welfare like a hawk on a limping gerbil.
In Louisiana late last week there was a malfunction with the EBT system and the cards temporarily lost their spending cap. As a result two Walmart stores in the area got cleaned out. Beck referred to the shoppers as “thieves and animals” claiming they had stolen from us and should have said “No, this is all I’m supposed to get …” and not superseded their limit. Now let’s skip the fact that no one in the history of humanity would have ever thought this through to Beck’s illogical conclusion, or the fact that the money was not “stolen” from Glenn, and others like him, as he claims since he lives in Texas and the incident happened in Louisiana. We don’t even need to focus on the flagrant hypocrisy of promoting corporate welfare in the trillions while referring to EBT recipients as “animals.” The True beauty in all of this is how perfectly it fit’s the Randian model. Many stores were affected by the glitch that removed spending limits from the cards. They opted not to accept EBT cards during this time. These two Walmart locations however chose to remain open, and process as many transactions as possible, to turn a higher profit. John Galt would be proud. Except when it came time to pay, the government said they would not authorize it, and left Walmart on the hook for the money spent.
You see we have indeed created a “Moocher state” like the Conservatives claim, it just isn’t the people they think it is. If corporations are people, then it is time we started treating them as such and not subsidizing their bad habits. Take away the unlimited “EBT cards” being used by them to finance their way out of every major quagmire they have gotten themselves into. Take away government subsidies for businesses that claim the “government is stopping their growth.” Split up the megabanks. Institute regulations so they can’t fill up their shopping carts with all our aluminum, oil, and corn then turn around and charge as a premium for it. This will lower the debt. This will truly start to fix our “welfare state” Perhaps then we can get rid of this clown car full of asshats blaming it on the 2.67%… eh, who am I kidding if it weren’t for the clown car none of us would even pay attention. Perhaps there is a Louie Gohmert clip I can jerk off to this morning.
The Freeloading Moocher Class
The Affordable Care Act went into effect yesterday, and millions of people tried to log onto websites or register in person to receive healthcare for the first time. So man people tried to log on in fact that it crashed the government website. The government’s goal is to get 7 million people enrolled by January 2014. I have written many times about Obamacare, and most of it has been unpleasant critiques of a law I feel does not go nearly far enough. I tend to agree with many people that enrolling 25 million Americans into a health insurance system with minimal oversight is a bad solution. It is however then law we have, and a cost effective. I drink. Rather heavily. I have insurance if I didn’t tax payers would be paying through the roof to keep me alive. People seem to understand this, but the argument always goes “why is it on me to pay for you to have insurance!?” That’s rather simple really, because we as a society at some point decided that whether you are lazy, or just can’t afford it, we would not let you die in the gutter if we could avoid it. The result is that emergency rooms will not turn away patients that cannot afford it, for better or worse this is a system we have in place, and you do not see a lot of people arguing to “kill the poor.”
If your argument is “let’s repeal Obamacare, and also let’s stop treating people who don’t have health insurance or can’t afford to pay for treatment.” then your point is valid one, and agree or disagree it is logical. However that is not the claim. In an epic battle with Wolf Blitzer, Michele Bachmann, insisted time and time again that this was not about denying 25 million people coverage, it was about letting me keep my health insurance, and not be sent before death panels. Well, it’s day two, so far I have received one email from HR telling me that everything is the same on my health insurance, that my premiums will not go up, and that if I would like I can examine other options that I did not previously have available to me. The other options are not better, and I will be sticking with my plan, and my doctors. The government run exchanges were not created for me, well at least not yet, they were created for people with no health insurance, possibly minimal to no employment, and who can’t afford coverage AKA Moochers. Problem is we can’t kill the moochers, many of whom work jobs that keep this country running, so what is the solution?
Well I think it is time we ended the handout generation. I think if you fail you should be held accountable. The government should not subsidize you simply because you are too stupid or lazy or incompetent to work. They should not give you a hand out because you don’t deserve it. I am, in short, opposed to the government bailout of businesses. Let these Atlases stand tall on their own feet or not at all. It is fascinating that in this country people who choose to get insurance, to prevent themselves from having to run to the emergency room on my dime are referred to as Moochers, while companies on Wall Street that gambled away theirs and other people’s money, with no regard for safety, or insuring their losses are viewed as Titans of Industry. Until you can show me that Wallstreet is more deserving of an insurance policy, than the guy who bagged my groceries yesterday I refuse to listen to your asinine argument.
Liberal, Conservative, or Panda
Sometimes I drink Saki, and bury the lead. I don’t know the reason for the former, but I am sure it causes the latter. Late nights watching Foxnews reruns lead me to puzzle over the term liberal. Perhaps it was something I heard after waking up on a couch in Brooklyn after a particularly messy weekend. “I would say I am a liberal, but I don’t like to use that word, it is too conservative.” The sentence made my bones shake, as did the previous night’s debate about GMOs. I was far too drunk to have it, and remember shouting something about labeling the color of toothpaste before tripping into thousands of dollars’ worth of music equipment on the way to get my pack of smokes.
I just can’t understand the concept of following an ideology to your own peril in spite of the evidence. I have had a long standing battle with anyone that will listen about GMOs, and it usually ends up with people shouting over me that Monsanto is evil, a fact I only dispute insomuch as a corporation can be neither good nor evil. Whatever you think of Monsanto, my issue is with the idea of arguing against science with pseudoscience you read on some blog called “Kale the World” or some equally esoteric titled piece of shit. The reality is that if we want to feed the poor in this world the easiest, cheapest, and safest way to do it is through GM products. The fiction is that these products will somehow make you sterile, or fuck with your innards. If you want to denounce the idea of Genetic Modification do it with science.
There is no map here, for some odd reason I am out of alignment, out of synch. I guess I would be viewed as “liberal” by the person interfering with my perfectly good hangover that morning, but the truth is I am not sure that word fits, or even that she was mistaken in suggesting it was “too conservative.” If Bob Beckel can be a liberal, then where does that leave actual liberals? Bob Beckel a recovering alcoholic, who managed to find Jesus and become devout, is no stranger to controversy/racism. Having elected himself judge of the world he demands pious apologies from the Muslim community for terrorist attacks. “The time has come for Muslims in this country and for other people around the world to stand up and be counted,” Beckel said, “If you can’t, you’re cowards.”
To reiterate the point, Beckel, a “liberal,” is demanding that Muslims in the U.S. Denounce attackers in Kenya, and that if they do not…“No Muslim students coming here with visas. No more mosques being built.” Beckel believes in the teaching of Jesus, yet sees no reason to apologize for Guantanamo Bay, Drone strikes that have civilian casualties, or any of even the most recent wars the US has been involved in. Certainly Bob doesn’t support some of these things, so why is he not vocally proclaiming his opposition and stating that his faith and his country do not believe in these things?
The question here is designed to be rhetorical, neither Bob nor any other person demanding an apology from ALL Muslims, as if they all speak in one voice, actually expects it to come or happen. The fact is many MANY prominent leaders in the Muslim community have denounced violence of any kind, as have most Muslims. However Beckel isn’t interested in that, he like many “liberals” is interested in being a racist under cover of being sensible.
So perhaps liberals really are too conservative, or perhaps we need to stop making allegiances to words rather than ideas. I for one will certainly apologize to any ethnicity, nationality, or culture, that my ethnicity, nationality, or culture has offended, and hope that this allows me to build my beer-a-mid in peace.
Am I the fly buzzing around my head outside of the bus toilet, or the excrement it so desperately seeks? Sometimes the dreary middle gray outside my window mirrors my morning mood. Apolitical thoughts on a political topic, The flies are swarming around the NYC mayoral election too, but I can’t be bothered with that shit. There is an argument here for ignorance being bliss, but we are a society of gluttons, myself included. We yearn for more Siberian tiger meat to be thrown on the fire and then sit around, mouths agape, saying “Oh the horror, what has this world come too?!”
Every story is sensational but only in that we can be incensed by it. Detroit goes bankrupt, and while the talking heads bicker over which ideology is to blame the Municipal pensions disappear. But good news Sports fans the city will still be building it’s state of the art $444 million new hockey rink. Maybe they can use the tears of the pensioners to make the ice. Detroit is the modern day Tammany Hall, but even boss Tweed didn’t have Kwame Kilpatrick’s love for graft. No bid contracts, call girl parties, murders, and a sexual appetite that puts Anthony Weiner in the choir boy category by comparison.
Yes, I’m back, and while this is not a return to form, I am toeing the river of slime and taking that deep breath before jumping in. Enough is enough, and I am taking a hiatus from my hiatus and fleeing the city that has given me comfort for these past few years. Yes I am leaving NYC, though sadly before Anthony Weiner. Never have I dreaded having a 47” inch HD TV as much as I have during this scandal. I think I have seen Anthony’s cock and balls from so many angles that I could identify it in a blind taste test. Which I am guessing if I stuck around in NYC long enough might be a proposition I will receive from Carlos Danger himself.
Speaking of giant worthless cocks, Bill O’Reilly doled out parenting advice to Black people this week, which is essentially the equivalent of my giving an anti-drinking speech to members of AA. Seriously Bill do you think you should be the one talking about the “destruction of the nuclear family?” You just went through a divorce, in which you scorched the earth to destroy your family, and attempted to get your wife kicked out of the catholic church. Oh the humanity, won’t anyone think of the children? See Bill that is the problem with your deluded messianic world view. You claim that the reason the “black community” has such a high homicide rate is not poor education, or economic status, or lack of gun control, but rather a breakdown of the family unit, yet something tells me your kids will be just fine.
The homicide rate in Detroit is the highest it has been in 20 years, if only they had banned divorce.
The Terrorism of Poverty
Emerging out of the sewer like hangover that I have been nursing for a few weeks I find my voice again. Thank you Ann Coulter for proving what a worthless piece of shit you truly are, and neatly bundling this fecal storm together for me. In the past month the government has failed to pass non-comprehensive gun control, failed to fix The Sequester, and the media has failed at their jobs, but no failure has been as colossal and complete as that of the Right Wing, who can’t shake the narrative that somehow everything is the fault of the poor. They are the dog turd in our shit sandwich, and make even the Democrats look like filet mignon by comparison.
Part I: Gohmert Pile
Rep. Louie Gohmert, the phallic representative from Texas’ first district, a district so stupid they elected him with nearly 80% of the vote in 2012, likened restrictions on guns to homosexuality last month. Now this is nothing new for Gohmert, who’s continued electoral victories make a strong case for instituting an IQ test that all members of congress must pass before being allowed inside. Yet his logic sets the opening for this Kabuki theatre.
Gohmert on limiting gun magazine clips:
And I pointed out, well, once you make it ten, then why would you draw the line at ten? What’s wrong with nine? Or eleven? And the problem is once you draw that limit ; it’s kind of like marriage when you say it’s not a man and a woman any more, then why not have three men and one woman, or four women and one man, or why not somebody has a love for an animal?
Let us ignore for a moment the obvious slanderous insult of likening homosexuality to having sex with Louie Gohmert (see what I did there?) and address the far more witty hypocrisy. Gohmert likens regulating magazine sizes to deregulating marriage. You see in the first district if you say something with enough flare you don’t actually have to be correct, you can even equate two ideas that are polar opposites, regulation and deregulation, and your audience will still think you piss gold.
Gohmert is an easy target, and certainly on the wrong side of history. Yet his argument against gun control points us in an interesting direction. It seems even worthless gun control measures that are essentially a token gesture can’t make it through congress. A bill merely to push for background checks on gun purchases can’t make it over the mud heap, and while there is a limit on how many boxes of Sudafed I can buy in a single outing to a drugstore, there is no limit on the amount of bullets I can purchase online.
Truth be told I don’t really believe in the kind of gun control we are likely to pass in this country, nor do I see a direct statistical correlation between a reduction in murder rate and the banning of handguns. (See United Kingdom post 1998 vs. pre 1998) Our major gun problems aren’t from mass shootings. Mass shootings are few and far between. Our major problems are more socioeconomic in nature. Over 270 school aged children have been killed in Chicago over the past 3 years. There is a drive by shooting or gun violence erupting in the city weekly. By January 6th of this year 10 people had already been gunned down, yet Conservatives choose to ignore this and instead push for bills to hand out shotguns to people in high crimes neighborhoods for the purposes of “protection.” Let the poor kill the poor. Fuck ‘em.
The media arms of the Left and Right Wing have no interest in the violence emanating out of the South Side of Chicago, with The Huffington Post focusing on Lindsay Lohan’s sideboob, and The Blaze telling heroic anecdotes of, I kid you not, people overcoming adversity to fire guns. The truth is we cannot fix the gun problem in this country by simply banning firearms, so long as we focus on the tools rather than the causes we can completely ignore the problem, focusing on the loudness of a voice vs. the content of it’s tenor.
Part II: Sequester of The Sequester
The Sequester has hit the poor, homeless, and elderly people hardest. I have felt no ill effects from it as yet, and as such could be persuaded to believe that it has no real effect. The conservative spin machine has been pushing the narrative that The Sequester is toothless since we first entered the quagmire. They made no mention of the drastic cuts to Meals on Wheels, no mention of the cuts in benefits to the elderly, no mention of the cuts to homeless shelters and feeding the poor. Let the poor eat the poor. Fuck ‘em.
In the middle of last month this lack of narrative was hijacked. We all stood tense as Boston, my hometown, was rocked by explosions. As the dust settled (or before it began to) all the good nature that is usually accompanied by a common tragedy shared by the country was destroyed. I make no secret of hating Conservatives, and disagreeing with most of their views, and while this may seem like a one sided attack… fuck it, sometimes they just deserve it. No excuses needed.
In the weeks following the attack John Yoo wrote two pieces the entirely contradicted his points for the national review. In the first he proposed that we do exactly what the administration ended up doing (using the public safety exemption before Mirandizing the prisoner) and in the second he said the administration had done it all wrong and by Mirandizing the prisoner we lost intelligence making our country less safe. Seeing a toadie like Yoo do a complete 180 degree turn, ethically, on any issue is only strange if you’ve never smelled this slime weasel before. Yoo is also the man who in the same decade as suggesting there is such a thing as “torture lite” took a teaching gig at UC Berkley. Yoo is an immoral blood tick that would run you over with his car, and then hand you his business card asking you if you would like to sue the car manufacturer.
After spending the past 3 weeks in disbelief watching the Right Wing scramble to explain how Chechnya ties into their global terrorist narrative, with a whiskey in hand and a strong desire to fellate the nearest gun, it finally started to make sense to me. See the vast majority of the citizenry in this country cannot understand anything more complex than a game of Jenga. Thus in explaining the Boston Marathon attack we have to pull one block at a time until our world topples in fear and disbelief.
Pull the first block, and explain to the populace how the Chechens have always been a huge threat and hated the United States. How somehow in acting alone, this is a massive conspiracy and they (and now Kazakhstan) are more dangerous than Afghanistan and Al-Qaida. Insist that there is a deep global threat here, in spite of all the evidence to support a lone act by deranged miscreants.
Pull the second block to reveal that granting citizenship is the issue. That, like Yoo suggested, we cannot Mirandize these superhuman monsters, because if we do it will be a threat to national security. Somehow James Holmes (the Colorado shooter who killed 12 and injured 58) got Mirandized, but Tsarnaev is unique and needs to be kept in a plastic cage lest he use his mutant abilities to control metal.
Pull the third block, blaming the entirety of what happened on Muslims, immigrants, and whatever people might consider “the other.” Claim that 1.57 million Muslims are out to kill us all. (Eric Bolling) Suggest that we should wiretap mosques. (Brian Kilmeade) Propose canceling Muslim student visas. (Bob Beckel)
Finally you pull the fourth brick, and bring it all crashing down. Suggest that this is because they are of the “Moocher Class.”
Ann Coulter in an epic pearl of wisdom, after suggesting Tsarnaev’s wife be arrested for wearing a Hijab, proposed a theory: “My point is: zero immigrants should be collecting government assistance.” In Ann’s world there is no need to let immigrants get settled and adjust to a new environment, and it is irrelevant that welfare is actually self-sustaining. In Ann’s world immigrants that don’t have money are just future terrorists. My family emigrated from the former Soviet Union in 1989, having limited resources and no knowledge of the English language; we lived on welfare till we were able to find out footing. Without welfare we would not have survived, and so what that we have since repaid the money spent on us more than 100 fold in taxes? We were poor and deserved to die.
Part III: Fuck ‘em
The Right Wing narrative has always been simple. Yet the economic part of it is a pill that gets lodged halfway down your throat, and as you gag on it, forcing it to go down you cannot help but wonder, is it really true?
It’s easy, especially after an attack on US soil, to convince a large portion of the country that bombings are only ever committed by “foreign” Muslims. You may even be able to convince them that the $1.4 Trillion dollars we spent on the wars was necessary to combat these evil terrorists.
When it comes to economics however, how do you convince the people that slashing aid to the indigent is the solution? Sweep the effects of The Sequester under the rug? Blame the economic collapse entirely on the poor wanting more house than they could afford? Claim the government is going bankrupt because we have to finance welfare? Suggest that crimes are committed in poor neighborhoods by poor people and that the only defense against them is to arm yourself?
All of these approaches have been attempted in one form or another but lack the powerful imagery and horror that terror evokes in our psyche. Which is why Ann Coulter needed to find the Rosetta Stone that converts our zeal for xenophobic hate mongering into a Randian style survival of the fittest. Poor immigrants come to the United States, get on welfare, and then blow up the country. Without welfare these people would just cease to exist. And there you have it, the way to tie it all together in a neat little bow. Terrorists equal poor moochers, who wouldn’t exist if we just cut entitlements. We can help kill terrorists simply by slashing entitlements. The terrorists are the poor. Fuck ‘em.
Some mornings I wake up hungover, full of half digested cashews, to blathering incoherent morning talk shows. When this happens, I usually bury the lead, and spend an hour looking for it. Assembling my thoughts after an angry drunken tirade becomes more difficult when the keys on my laptop are jammed from being pounded on hard with sticky whiskey soaked fingers. My Underwood never has this problem… perhaps there is something there… but I digress time to assemble.
Piece one: Where have all the homophobes gone?
Yesterday the Supreme Court started hearing testimony against proposition 8, and my facebook erupted with pink equal signs. The odd thing is that while everyone from the New York Times to Motherjones put this article in their lead, most conservative blogs avoided the topic, relegating it to the bottom of their page if mentioning it at all. The Blaze had three articles and Gabby Giffords husband, not being sold a gun before it even mentioned gay rights, and even then it did it in the form of a crib sheet “Everything you need to know about the proposition 8 court case.” The article was devoid of meaning and merely citing the possible outcomes. You had to scroll down a few more articles passed the endearing videos of autistic children, to get any analysis on the topic. What gives blaze? I remember over the summer when out of every three articles two were about the “homosexual agenda” being indoctrinated to your kids. What’s changed, it takes a full four minutes to realize the answer. No one wants to be on the losing side of an ethical debate. They did not want to be the last rats on the ship. Shit even Bill O’Reilly referred to the protestors against gay marriage as “bible thumpers.” So what replaced all the homophobic coverage, what was the story?
Piece two: As American as fellating your gun
The National Review, The Drudge Report, and The Blaze, as well as many other “reputable” conservative blogs lead with a story yesterday about how Mark Kelly was denied the purchase of an AR-15, that he reportedly was buying to prove a point. Even Greg Gutfeldt, the Fox News troll, went of on a rant about Jim Carrey sullying responsible gun owners. When did owning a gun in this country become a rite of passage? When did it become something above mockery, above law, above scrutiny? When did it become gospel? It seems mocking Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity campaign, and her by proxy, is ok, but poking fun at gun culture and Charlton Heston makes you “the most pathetic tool on the face of the earth.” Those who are so quick to point out the insane rage that Islamic fundamentalists go into when it comes to insulting their faith, can’t even take a moment to laugh at this hypocrisy. Nineteen hijackers fly 4 planes into the building in the United States, and we have mass protests about building an unaffiliated mosque nowhere near the site of the catastrophe 9 years later, but a man kills 26 people with a high capacity assault rifle, and merely mentioning that we restrict that amount of ammo he can dispense without reloading is viewed as blasphemy? Which brings us to…
Piece three: Good old fashioned values
Why don’t women want to be broodmares anymore? It seems they spend entirely too much time destroying society by getting these things we call jobs. Suzanne Venker, no stranger to asinine controversy posited that so many of society’s problems come from “family not coming first.” She asserts this in an article that can best be described as anathema to everything that is tolerable. Dissecting this turd is impossible, but I will dive in (regretting my earlier analogy) anyways.
There is this little gem wedged somewhere in the middle shrinking her audience to suburban house wives with moderate means:
“Modern women are encouraged to avoid or escape the home, not only because they “must” in order to make a living (which is a canard, not a fact),”
Of course women don’t EVER Have to work that is a choice they make. Needing two incomes to survive, are these people not investing right? So right from the start we have to narrow our gaze to see Mrs. Venker’s world view, and only focus on families that are able afford having one parent stay home. There is a certain cookie cutter 1950s era mystique that Mrs. Venker seems to try and blind you with, but even Mayberry had limits. No Venkerville is a much different beast, as she goes on to show us:
“The more educated mothers are, the more educated their children will be—which bodes well for America’s future economy. Mothers who return to the workforce full-time almost always provide their children with less educated caregivers.“
See the women of Mayburry were gainfully employed even while helping to raise little Oppie and dating Andy. I don’t recall the episode where Andy Taylor let Helen Crump know she had to quit being a teacher. Mrs. Venker cites no facts to support her claims, and in fact a recent study funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, a team from the department of epidemiology and public health at University College London found that children are more well adjusted when both of their parents work, than when just one does, but in Venkerville a woman’s home is her castle:
“The domestic domain is a great place to be. It offers enormous flexibility and control over one’s life—and a boatload of power to boot. It’s a power of a different sort: the kind that matters.”
The domestic sphere offers power… so much more power… A CDC study conducted in 2010 found that 1 in 4 women reported being beaten by their spouse, or significant other. Domestic violence never happens in Venkerville here “the bedrock of our nation” is a stay at home mom, and “if they want to be the boss at work, they will not be the boss at home.” I think Marissa Mayer, the recently appointed CEO of Yahoo, who just had a kid in September would disagree. In fact Mrs. Mayer is one of several female CEOs, and most of them have well adjusted children.
Piece four: conclusion
The United States progresses forward whether we want it to or not. Venkerville is just a right wing pipe dream, something to look at fondly, like a high school bowling trophy, and lament. This fictional world can be held up as a utopia, the realized dream made flesh. There are no gays in Venkerville, and every Sunday you go to your church to pray for another good assault rifle harvest. Your wives don’t have to work, and would never choose to because they wouldn’t want to have their children raised by wolves, or worse yet Haitians.
You see Venkerville is the perfect dodge, the perfect escape method. It’s not your fault society is crumbling, it those damn women that won’t raise their children. Maybe if Adam Lanza’s mother stayed at home to raise him he wouldn’t have been so dysfunctional. In her final statement Susan Venker asks:
“When will family come first?”
Well Suzanne, to put it bluntly, when you stop using that stick you wedged up your ass as a measuring tool for what you think “family first” means.
p.s. the full article can be found here.
The Republican Race Problem
My morning hangover has nothing to do with the color of my skin, and neither does my vote. For months the Republicans have been “eloquently” attempting to frame the debate over the future of the party in simple terms, “We just don’t appeal to minorities.” With Jan Brewer, and John McCain suggesting that illegals are beheading people and leaving them in the desert, it’s a wonder why the Republican Party has such a bad rep with the Latino community.
Now keeping all of this in mind, I remember the two years when the Tea Party was still relevant, following Big Daddy Glenn Beck, hand-in-hand at pointing out the black people in their marches. It was relatively easy, there were maybe three of them. Now I suggest that what made the Tea Party racist, aside from its actual policies, was not the lack of ethnicity at their rally but their strong desire to showcase it. The High School I went to was about 90% white, yet we were never accused of racism, maybe because we didn’t trot our minority students out to showcase them like prize pigs at a fair. Rush Limbaugh famously asked the day after election why the Republican Party doesn’t “get credit” for Condoleezza Rice and other prominent black republicans. Precisely missing the point the electorate had sent him.
All of this being said however we must follow the tides, and as a friend of mine pointed out last weekend, short of building a moon colony or changing the moon’s mass, they are pretty predictable. If the republicans want to receive minority votes, they need to actually appeal to minority voters. The Southern Strategy, hatched by Reagan and brought to blossom by Nixon, has failed. In this day and age you need at least 40% of the Latino vote to win an election. Something that is hard to do when your appeal to the Latino community is a double wide electric fence, and a banning of programs that teach their culture and heritage.
All of this being said, the Republican’s convincing shot across the bow is, “What if we appeal to you on a strictly visual level?” So they trot out Marco Rubio, and his not-ready-for-primetime debacle to appeal to a growing demographic. They claim they are now for comprehensive immigration reform, that they have always been for some form of Amnesty, and have always loved tacos. Yet how well do they think their outreach is going? Here is an article from yesterday, on the shifting demographics.It seems the Republicans aren’t too excited about the shift in Texas’ population. Perhaps if they weren’t busy counting the minorities who do or do not attend their rallies they could actually come up with a platform that appeals to them on more than just a base level. Then again, my faith in the electorate being what it is, perhaps running Marco Rubio on a ticket in 2016 will actually be enough.
This morning on the way to the dentist, I saw a street cleaner scraping frozen vomit off of Wall Street. Through dark black shades and tinted hangover I saw the charisma and virtual ease with which he removed the offending street stain. This was, apparently, not his first rodeo. Most people didn’t notice, some looked in disgust, but I watched every second of his methodical routine, right down to last hosing of the sidewalk. I don’t think he saw me staring through my shades, sitting across the street, chasing my egg salad sandwich with Alka-Seltzer, but I saw him. Wrinkled, and sun bleached, he had little white whiskers and deep brown eyes. There was no facial expression, no disgust, or resigned acceptance, it was more mechanical, robotic, he seemed to neither enjoy nor loathe this particular task in his day, and the aplomb with which he handled it was breathtaking. In the time it took me to eat my sandwich that little bit of Wall Street was returned to it’s former condition. Until today I did not think it was possible to be jealous of vomit, but the right kind of brisk morning wind, the perfect hangover, a man who is a genius at his craft and the possibilities are endless.
For a countless time in my life I am ashamed of Rush Limbaugh.
Over the years we have grown to expect a certain panache from our partisan sideshow, from Chris Matthews peeing himself at the mere mention of Obama, to Glenn Beck’s inability to stop crying at the loss of innocence. I pay attention with a sense of schadenfreude, and bemusement at their outrage. Whiskey glass in hand I listen to episode after episode of Alex jones, before cutting to Abby Martin playing clips of Jill Stein. “We need to show our civil disobedience in the voting both with our votes!” says Ms. Stein, I do a spit take, and Abby Martin swoons “I couldn’t agree with her more!” Ah yes, the act of disobeying your government through voting in it’s elections.
It seems the left is out for blood, but only if they can get home to watch that glee episode they have saved on their DVR. I am not judging this world view, I don’t have the right, sipping Jim Beam and watching The Daily Show is certainly something I enjoy with great zeal, and I doubt I will be on the front lines of any plans to overthrow the government any time soon. However I also do not change the meaning of words to make my cause feel more important. Does Jill Stein really believe that it is being anti-establishment to vote Green Party? In most states the Green Party just endorses the Democratic candidate because he/she “most fits their ideals.” I understand the logistics of not being able to run someone for all open races, but suggesting that a vote for the Green Party is civil disobedience when many of these same candidates are the very machine you are trying to rebel against seems like it has to be an ironic joke.
By this point you will have no doubt decided that I have buried the lead on this piece. You sat down, hopefully with a drink in hand, and expected to read a whimsical rant about Rush Limbaugh, only to watch the first two paragraphs skip by without mention of his name. You ponder for a moment whether or not you should read on, but there can be no discussion without context, and so we progress from my digression.
“Ladies and gentlemen, for the first time in my life I am ashamed of my country,” Rush Limbaugh said today. Rush Limbaugh was born in 1951. Jill Stein was born in 1950. I was Born in 1983. The Civil Rights Marches in Selma happened in 1965. How do I, who has no memories of the police brutality of the 1960s, and the defiant populace that stood up to it, manage to grasp the concept of “shame” and “civil disobedience” and two people that were old enough to follow along miss the irony inherent in their statements?
I pause to take another sip of my beverage before reading on to what it is exactly that Rush is so ashamed of. It was not that Indiana advanced a bill through the state senate that would require women to get TWO ultrasounds before and after a medication-induced abortion. Nor was it that two weeks ago 22 republicans voted against the Violence Against Women Act. It certainly wasn’t the fact that five U.S. states Montana, Arizona, Missouri, Indiana and Oklahoma, have proposed that teachers be allowed to explore “alternative methods to evolution” to be taught in classrooms. No Limbaugh’s shame and embarrassment run deep, and the result of a truly apocryphal sense of injustice. The lack of spending cuts from the Obama administration in the sequester talks.
The humor of watching this old war horse, encircle his wagon train and make his hypocritical last stand while calling for less spending and a greater military budget is not lost on me, nor is his redundant explanations of why he is so outraged, “it’s deja vu all over again.” Yet I am left with a sense or remorse. For truly, if the act of civil disobedience is to vote our conscience, and our outrage comes from the fact that “we’re going to spend more this year than we spent last year. We’re just not going to spend as much as projected.” then our watered down causes are being over zealously represented by an aggressively unfitting rhetoric. Sure it’s funny, but what will we do when there is real outrage leading to real civil disobedience?