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Spirit of 1934. Teabag Distemper. Has Anything Changed?

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I found this postcard in a shop on the Oregon coast. It was postmarked August 1934, sent from Washington, DC. to Portland Oregon. "Did you see President Roosevelt when he was in Portland?" Uncle Jim asks.


Dark Man by Allan Wayne

The situation with today's Teabag Party, and their disrespectful treatment of a certain black man (who happens to be President), is eerily coincidental. If you consider the fact that President Roosevelt, like President Obama, was in the throes of a great depression, and trying to pass legislation to save the economy, it is almost like a post card of history repeating itself.

On Aug, 1934, President Franklin Roosevelt sailed up the Columbia River to Portland, Oregon, to inspect the Bonneville Dam, work done by the Civilian Conservation Corps, unemployed workers laid low by the Great Depression.

Twenty-five percent of workers back then had no jobs. Today, it could be somewhat less. Yet, some things never change. Republicans back then opposed Roosevelt's New Deal as an enemy of business and growth. Today's Republicans seem to oppose everything that helps the middle class. They act like slaves bowing to corporation masters.

But the Dark Man on the card?-- does he represent something that will never change? An attitude held by a certain segment? It is shameful that cards like this were peddled in our nation's capital. In those days, I suppose, such caricatures were looked upon with amusement. The half-naked jungle getup surely sets off primordial triggers. The sexual overture to women is blatant, along with the boyish depiction, used with the word man.

The image vividly captures a Teabag flashback moment--when Teabaggers said Obama was un-American, probably a Muslim, terrorist, socialist, or communist. Is the Dark Man a trademark for repressed fear, that manifests itself today with marginalizing rhetoric, and tries to shrink our President into someone who is not a citizen; an alien, if you will?

The cartoon fits nicely with childish animation that passes for Teabag critical thinking and "he-is-not-like-us" self-focus. Caught up in the corporate web, blinded and brain-washed by fear, Teabaggers cannibalize their own self interests.

When Roosevelt visited Portland in 1934, we were in the middle of the Great Depression (October 1929-December 1941), but 1934 also saw the creation of the Securities and Exchange Commission and Federal Communications Commission. On Aug 1935, Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act to protect the elderly. The president set up public works around the US including bridges, roads and flood control dams in an attempt to put America back on it's feet. 1934 saw the turning point in the great depression with unemployment decreasing to 22%.

In other parts of the world in 1934, Adolf Hitler of the Nazi Party elevated himself to the position of Führer. In Russia, Stalin began his massacres, and in China Mao Tse-Tung spread the communist doctrine

On August 15, 1934, the last contingent of U.S. Marines departed Haiti, after a formal transfer of authority to the Garde, ending an occupation that began on July 28, 1915.

Also, in 1934, the Loch Nes Monster was spotted for the first time, Shirley Temple sang the Good Ship Lollipop, Donald Duck made his debut, and Bill Moyers and Ralph Nader were born. The FBI ended the careers of criminals John Dillinger, Bonnie and Clyde, Pretty Boy Floyd, and Baby Face Nelson. Prohibition had ended a short time before.

America changed in many ways. In spite of the 1934 post card, we today have a black president. Yet, a certain segment of America behaves irrationally. It is almost like they suffer from some mutant strand of Teabag Distemper, normally a contagious viral affliction that short-circuits the nervous system of dogs and cats. Those who carry the disease wander aimlessly, suffer seizures, and due to mental instability, may suddenly become aggressive without warning or provocation

Teabaggers act like the "Walking Dead", their brains ravaged by lacunae, the virus spread by spittle. Palin, in particular, possesses a mad hatter gaze, as if her eyes were hampered by heavy metal toxicity; unable to carry through a cogent thought, and speaking one pitch above senile dementia. Her frantic warbling is frightening.

Yet perhaps, Teabaggers should be pitied, as they follow like spellbound children, mesmerized by Palin's reedy voice, and flute-like incantations, as if Palin were the Pied Piper, leading them out of the city, perhaps to the wilderness.

If they actually read the fairy tale, however, they would know the Piper lured them to the river, where they drowned.

 

Conceived on west coast,born on east coast,returned to northwest spawning grounds. Never far from water. Degree in biology, minor: socio/psychology. Nature-oriented. Building trades,marine carpentry, Veteran, ex-social worker, ex-tavern owner. (more...)
 

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so blatant were the racial overtones. It has reste... by Allan Wayne on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 7:31:19 AM
I found your angle interesting but I was not able ... by Tim Harney on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 8:42:46 AM
I forgot to add some social context to your 1934 r... by Tim Harney on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 8:54:14 AM
Playing the race card?--or mailing the race card? ... by Allan Wayne on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 11:03:40 AM
Tattoos.They usually indicate a number. Or a sign.... by Ned Lud on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 11:42:29 AM
But we are more than skin deep.[[Tattoo]]Portland'... by Allan Wayne on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 4:18:28 PM
Tim, your statement that "I don't think human natu... by Guy Dwyer on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 12:31:11 PM
I would add that Tim's claim that it's a "defileme... by Sarah Ruth on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 12:41:19 PM
I was merely pointing out historical context and s... by Tim Harney on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 1:25:43 PM
People are always talking (and reacting) as they t... by Ned Lud on Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 at 3:01:55 PM