Hey, everybody, how have you been? Don't know about you, but i've spent the majority of this summer's vacation, as i commonly do, traveling and trying to ignore the nasty national news, which i have now skewered for over twenty years. That's right, my first column was published in February of 1990.
My, oh my, oh gosh, how things have not changed.
In that very first column (published by Anthony Smith in his long defunct 'zine, The Alternative) i found this paragraph where a fictional government spokesman attempts to calm a worried public over an environmental issue:
"While we were standing at the trash pile, a big wind blew by and stirred it all around. I went to pick it up. He said, "No money in that, son. Leave it till it gets so big, no one will ever be able to pick it up, then we'll hire someone to fail at it and invent them all sorts of inadequate but expensive tools to fail at it with and everyone will stay happy."
And i thought: BP. I thought Immigration. Health care, drug wars, foreign wars, culture wars, economy where the rich are forever raping the poor then calling them lazy. Same as it ever was, same as it ever was. Twenty years ago, our country was being run by a Republican media, promoting a Republican agenda at the expense of the general public. And here in 2010, once again, Republican leadership and Republican press have our country in a continuing disaster.
Now right away i know some readers are already up in arms, whipping out their thesauri and honing barbs to sling about "the liberal press," the Tea Party as the Voice of the People," and what an idiot i am for not knowing that "Obama, the commie/socialist, secret Muslim, Black Power-White Hating Gun grabbing Revolutionary" and his henchmen, er, henchpersons, Nancy "the Shrew" Pelosi and Harry "the Idiot" Reid are responsible for the trainwreck our country's in and it's the Republicans who are trying to save America for the true Americans.
My friends, thanks for the corrections. Save your letters, you must obliviously be Republicans. My condolences. Perhaps there is a cure. If you truly cannot see that the party of "No" is using the same lame techniques to manipulate the ignorant public, then you truly are either a manipulator or ignorant. After twenty years of observation, i would have to say that Republicans fall into three groups: deceitfully greed-driven, vindictively self-righteous, and/or stupid.
Dear angered reader, pray tell which group do you fall in?
Despite my best efforts to ignore their crap, while touring this summer, promoting my new book, Leaving the Empire, I have repeatedly heard tales of Republicans refusing to pay for 9/11 victims and "First Responders," and delaying unemployment for millions, while they champion a law written to satisfy Russell Pearce's Neo-Nazi supporters. What kind of person would do that or support somebody else for it?
Must be a Republican.
Every day it seemed, even while traveling, i received emails from folks like Dudley Brown telling me how the evil Obama admin intends to use his evil Homeland Security to steal their guns. I get people like Rand Paul being called American heroes for wanting to repeal the Civil Rights Act. I get supposed sage national politicians decrying proposed restrictions on Wall Street at the same time we discover Wachovia has been laundering hundreds of billions in drug money, but the real problem in America is peasants sneaking across the border to take the slave labor jobs Americans don't want. What kind of person could spew such vomit? Worse yet, what kind of person would swallow it?
Must be a Republican.
What kind of person would scream bloody murder to try to scandalize a nebbish like Elena Kagan or Shirley Sherrod blindly marching in lock-step behind hate-mongers like Limbaugh, Beck and Gingrich as if they were freedom fighters? What kind of person could listen to Andrew Breitbart and possibly construe him as anything even remotely resembling fair-minded or honest? What kind of person could watch the McCain/Heyward debates and think that either choice was in any way a good one, or for that matter would see Jan Brewer as an attractive candidate?
Must be a Republican (and check that eyesight while you're at it).
What kind of person they were good Christian lovers of Jesus because they would approve of madmen murdering doctors to stop abortions from killing American babies; yet demand unlimited funding for our country to kill foreign babies in wars? See what i mean?
As awful a malady as it must be, "Republicanism" that is, one has to wonder: why would anyone choose to be a Republican in the first place? Well, for the rich and powerful, the obvious answer is since the Republican Party is owned by the rich and powerful, it is simply a matter of investing in the home brand. Who champions wars, exploitive energy companies, the health insurance industry and Wall Street? Republicans. Who works to protect them at the expense of the general public? Republicans. Who makes a butt-load off of the profits buying and selling those miseries? That's right again, Republicans.