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Absolute Phony Outrage

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Message Randy LoBasso
After a Mexican billboard and press campaign by Swedish Vodka maker Absolut Vodka depicted our border with Mexico before the Mexican-American War an "Absolut World," the right-wing fringe went nuts with calls to boycott the product.

The LA Times broke the Absolut story and Drudge has been following it since last week. There's a poll on the Times' website asking readers what they think of the ad, and, as of Monday, an overwhelming 63.5 percent believe "The ad is an affront to Americans. I'm going to boycott the product."

A website sprung up called, where you can download the "Absolut Treason!" poster to put up around your own neighborhood. The website is linked to the FIRE Coalition, "a nationwide coalition of individuals and groups dedicated to Federal Immigration Reform and Enforcement."

Absolut has apologized, saying, "As a global company, we recognize that people in different parts of the world may lend different perspectives or interpret our ads in a different way than was intended in that market." Still, the website dedicated to the controversy continues its boycott.

They've also created a new web ad depicting an "Absolut World" as today's borders with a giant fence between the U.S. and Mexico.

The point of all this is there is no point. Right wing groups take these non-issues and turn them into larger concerns because if they didn't, they'd have nothing to do. It's reminiscent of Bill O'Reilly calling on his customers to boycott Pepsi because rap star Ludacris was in their advertisements and Ludacris uses bad words in his songs. Or when he called on his viewers to boycott the movie "Redacted" because it was anti-American in that it told the true story of American soldiers committing atrocities against a 14 year-old Iraqi girl instead of portraying them spreading freedom across the middle east.

(No word on whether or not O'Reilly plans to boycott his own network for giving American traitor Oliver North a weekly paycheck.)

This "issue" has been created so the LCD of our society can attempt to prove themselves correct. There are people who say they believe Mexicans are coming here not to work, but to conquer the land we stole from them in the 1800s. They're the same ones who pretend to think terrorists living in caves can take over our government and force us to speak Arabic. It's hard to write this stuff with a straight face.

I'm all for a border fence, and I blame both parties for doing nothing since September 12, 2001. But the idea that Mexicans could somehow take back California, Texas, Utah, Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Wyoming through this slow illegal immigrant "invasion" is ridiculous. Does anyone really believe the guy mowing Mitt Romney's lawn is secretly planning the overthrow of the White House while he sends the five dollars a day he makes back to his family in Guadalajara?

The Absolut Vodka boycott is part of a greater Phony Outrage plan the right loves to throw at Americans, making it seem like they represent traditional America. Be it clothing that looks like it could be Palestinian, Democrats questioning an Army general, homosexuals asking for equal rights, or Reverend Wright giving sermons in which he repeats American history, people love to hate other people and things.

Those of us who can be coerced into thinking Mexicans can beat up the National Guard and replace Arnold Schwartzenegger with Pedro are the ones who don't stop to think why, exactly, nothing has been done about the border. They simply say, "kick 'em out," knowing it's currently impossible.

The infamous border fence was approved but never funded. Some say it was just typical Washington emptiness. It was, but it goes further than that. It was an empty promise the right makes to their loyal Phony Outrage Base every election year in order to stir up votes. (Weren't we going to federally ban gay marriage back in 2005?) Once elected, they switch their priorities to the economic conservatives, giving the wealthiest Americans tax breaks and attempting to overhaul social security into non-existence – and this is because conservative politicians fall into that economic conservative base, and so do their top donors. They create terms like trickle-down economics to back up their bad ideas.

The fact is, the right needs illegal immigrants here because big businesses need illegal immigrants here. They'll never do anything about it.


At least 12 million illegal immigrants have crossed the border on Bush's watch and one in six manufacturing jobs have evaporated in the last seven years. If Phony Outragers paid attention, they'd blame someone besides a vodka company for this.

Problem is, it's all about not paying attention.

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Randy LoBasso lives in Philadelphia, PA, where he does a bunch of freelance writing. He wrote for OpEdNews in 2007/2008.
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