Flagstaff, AZ—Deciding against heading to D.C. for my own rally, which is every blogger’s prerogative, I instead attended the Rally to Restore Sanity in my area. This was a difficult decision for me but, since Winslow wouldn’t let me into the rent-a-car, I opted to stay around town and…damn you Ghetto Shaman!
At 11:00 AM on 10/30 as the D.C. Mall filled up with ralliers, for some rally or another, a woman named Donna held a sign outside of City Hall that read "Vote Damn It!" OK, it just said ‘vote’, but the damn it was implied.
She said, "I would have preferred Hillary over Obama, but considered McCain until he chose Palin as his running mate."
Donna, a true AZ independent, seemed interested in a viable third party, but didn’t seem horribly enthralled with the Tea Peeps. Then I spoke with a gentleman named Doug, who said he’s "disturbed by all the 2nd Amendment rhetoric and threats; all because they don’t like the results of a democratic process." And he was "upset with all the hatred and intimidation these days."
I chose that moment to expose my holster, "Shut up, douche bag!" I said, before breaking his rally sign over my knee.
OK, maybe not. But what were these seemingly sane people hiding? Hmmmm. My interview with Doug was interrupted, because someone started yelling obscenities at the ralliers (only seconds after the above picture was snapped).
At the time this unpleasantness erupted, there were only three signs out: Vote Now, Your Choice Counts, and Rally to Restore Sanity. So this "patriot" was either not interested in voting, not interested in sanity, or perhaps becomes enraged by the sight of American flags. I know what you’re thinking, but The Crank was in The Valley that day (come for the festival a-ya?).
|Here’s Doug and a fellow rallier talking down a person offended by any talk of sanity
We are a divided nation. But I’m not saying all Tea Party members are morons—sure some of them are steeped in stupid, but the concerning thing is, the majority of their candidates certainly are morons. That was yet another key point missed by my blogversaries. And not all Tea Party darlings are bone heads either; there’s Joe Miller over in Alaska who can complete a whole sentence on command, and there’s Chris Christie over in Jersey who certainly has his fair share of hootspa. I hate hootspa.
But it’s important we stop pigeonholing ourselves into one camp or another. I can make fun of Sean Hannity, because he’s consistently pathetic, but I can also quickly lose faith in Keith Olbermann (someone I admired during the Bush years). My article Today’s Worst Liberal in the World came out in 2008. In fact, I was critical of Keith before it was popular to do so. Whereas I figured out some media madness in a few weeks, my friends across the blogosphere never questioned Eight YEARS OF BUSH FOXAGANDA. This is why they only resonate with those completely immersed in the neococoon, or vodka.
Having such a large faction of society completely devoid of any independent thought is a mortifying. It scares me more than pragmatism (Fox translation = socialism). It scares me more than whatever the hell Glenn Beck is scared about (no Prozac script?). I think it’s the story of our time, which is why I’ve been harping on the subject (to the chagrin of both of my readers).
Bachmann and Angle are as scary on the right as Reid and Pelosi are on the left. Difference? Most liberals get that. Yet Republicans have almost no ability to identify the dangers on their own side of the aisle. In fact, they tend to promote them. Does that mean they’re morons themselves? Not necessarily; it could be dementia.
Fact 1: I do know intelligent people who watch and enjoy Fox News.
Fact 2: That’s a shame.
I heard a conversation the other day at a coffee shop.
The guy at the table next to me said, "My brother’s from Nevada and he’s like, ‘God, Reid is such an asshole, but then the Tea Party people put up Angle to run against him? What the F&^%!’"
That quote rather succinctly sums up why I have some faith in liberals and next to none in today’s conservatives. They’re picker is not only broken, it has been shoved so far up the U.S. psyche’s ass that our country’s zeitgeist is walking a little funny these days.
Angle, Bachman, Palin, O’Donnell? Really? Ethnocentric, nationalistic, fundamental thought is fine—aka, wherever the hell you’re at in the grand meme of things, knock yourself out—but for God’s sake, do it well (hint: you’re not).
This has been my point all along. I don’t know how many times I have to say it, but there are valid positions within the Republican Party and there are valid positions within the Tea Party. Bottom line, we are healthier with a better brand of donkey and a better brand of elephant.
At the rally today, the four people I interviewed were reasonable, intelligent, and informed. The one guy from the right was yelling obscenities, because advocating for normal brain wave patterns is apparently unacceptable to him. Hmmm. Liberals are all over the map with their positions. Foxeteers are in lockstep or, in some cases, ‘goose step’, fashion. But I kid the fascists.
Listening and thinking are clearly not vogue. Politicians have devolved to little more than legitimized crooks, or, as I like to call them, Discord staffers. This is why I want to stand with some type of Tea Party movement, but in order to do so today I would have to don my Groucho mustache/glasses combo out of sheer embarrassment. And, as most people who know me would attest, I don’t embarrass easily. Sure, they’re not all morons, but how can we tell when the person stating their case is, in fact, a moron? Oh, wait, no M word…er, analytically challenged?
My five minutes at City Hall Saturday reminded me why I would rather be at a Stewart/Colbert rally than a Tea Party or a Beck Rally any day. The Crank feels most people are moderate. I say, they seem anything but these days. What gets my goat is those the most outraged have an outrageous voting record and a tenuous grip on reality (on a good day).
I have entire posts focusing on—not the dismantling of conservatism—but the legitimizing of it. Republicans seem incapable of self reflection, or anything resembling improvement. I also want something better than Air America or MSNBC on the liberal side. Again, the main difference? If you lose objectivity on the left, you dive (MSNBC or AA), you lose objectivity on the right, you thrive (Fox News). As usual, Andrew summed the rally up nicely…the Ghetto Shaman rally, of course:
"It wasn't ethnically very diverse, but there were many more boomers than I expected. It was very good humored, and one sensed that the entire crowd loathed Fox, felt queasy about MSNBC, couldn't bring themselves to watch CNN and caught NPR in the commute…oh, and The Ghetto Shaman rocked!"
OK, I added the Ghetto Shaman part, but it was implied. The tanked media was a major theme of the Stewart rally. Once again our comedians are more insightful than our politicians. Heck, a news outlet for my meme doesn’t even exist yet. When will there be an integral news station?! Well, I could just keep watching Fareed Zakaria all day on TiVo, but that’s hardly the same.
What I fear is that if we have too many at a ethnocentric/fundamental level, we have very little chance of avoiding a global conflict with Islam. Too many liberal pluralists, on the other hand, and we’re likely to have Sharia Law in the west. But if a few more integral folk show up in congress, who knows, maybe we could really fuck things up!
And now, as promised, a Special Comment:
(hint: it’s really not all that special and if you have something better to do right now, like go for a root canal or watch C-Span 2, you might want to do that.)
My original thought was to go line by line with Crank’s last post, pointing out what I meant and how the Foxeteers switch to something completely different (hint: usually involving socialism). But the Daily Discord is already cutting way too much into my drinking time, so no.
But the Crank is right about this part: dumb, dumber, dumbest comments are hardy integral. And, in the interest of good sportsmanship, I’m even willing to drop the M and even the D word from my vocabulary. If, but only if, my fellow Discordians actually read what I say before immediately translating them into Foxisms—nine out of ten of which do not apply to my posts or my position.
I will take the bite out of my schtick, but, as far as the truly personal attacks, I think that’s another example of the Crank calling the Zano hack.
Meanwhile, Pernick on a recent Facebook exchange called me "clueless" for thinking Bush added more to the deficit than Obama.
And, not to be outdone, the Crank said, "Well, no (Obama had more deficits). You once said to me that Fox lies, and that you can make up stories, but ya can’t make up facts."
Two posts ago, here’s me on deficits: "Sorry, but Obama doesn’t count. Capitalism ended in 2008," and in this week’s post I added, "The last $1.65 trillion Obama spent was a reaction to the collapse. It staved off a depression."
A few posts back, I showed a graph of all the deficits of the last 8 presidents, minus Obama, and I explained why his deficits didn’t count, because it was all over by then (and still is). This is borrowed time with borrowed money. The way you guys make it sound, Obama just waltzed in during a little lull in our economy and started seizing automobile manufacturers. Huh? Do you think Obama blew $1.65 trillion on hats?
Again, just for fun: Operation Monopoly Money doesn’t count; it was post econolyptic.
Summary of the economic debate late ‘08:
"Naaah, let’s not do the whole depression thing."
"Sounds good, George. I’ll print the loot."
Summary of the economic debate early ‘09:
"Naaah, let’s not do the whole depression thing."
"Sounds good, Barak. I’ll print the loot."
Obama’s part in this was going to go down similarly no matter who was in power. Oh, oh, wait. Actually, if a true Tea Partier was in at that time, the global economy would have collapsed. They are, of course, right in principle about fiscal conservatism, but if they had tried that shit at the onset of The Great Recession, it would have been soup line city. Facts are terrible things.
The deficits that broke America’s back happened during those fiscally conservative Bush years. And, to some degree, the whole Spendulus thing worked far better than I could have imagined. I still think we’re heading for a double dip recession, but the crux of our differing opinion is this: I know how to appropriately divvy up the blame, again 60(R), 40 (D), which is about the best case scenario for Republicans. History will likely be harsher. That’s why I was yelling as loudly as I did circa 2004-2008, when you were all just a twinkle in your founding father’s tea bag. I saw the big tree and I saw the glazed look in our Commander in Chief’s eyes as he stayed the course. I predicted the collapse almost to the month…so yeah, I’m crazy…crazy like a Fox!
–Homer Simpson at a Beck rally