Sunday, January 8, 2012

Chalk Outline of the Body Politic (A Look Back)

Back in November of 2010, I posted the following rant after the mid-terms but then took it down after a few days. Chock full of good, snide metaphor as it may be, it smacks of the same smug, patronizing tone that I find so distasteful in anyone who's not me.

I thought I'd archive it, give it a year and see if I had any legs as a political prognosticator. With New Hampshire coming up in a couple days (the first reality based contest) and the battle focusing in on the Empty-shirt-wearing-the-mom-jeans, Mister Seepage and Ron Paul, the dust should start settling and we'll see who's left chewing on the Republican carcass. 

A reminder to my friends on both ends of the political fringe. Please don"t mistake this as a leftist diatribe. Being a radical centrist, I think you're both crazy as hell. It's just that I find the battle for the soul (or whatever serves in its place...) of the Republican Party more fascinating.

Besides, who am I kidding? I am smug and patronizing.

Let's see what happens.

Nov. 4, 2010

I know you’ve been watching the returns and the apparent rise of the Tea (Terrorize Elderly Americans) party with a frozen look on your faces as if someone were waving a turd under your nose. Take a deep breath, though, and stop surfing through those Canada websites. This is where it gets really fascinating. (Of course I’m slightly sociopathic and find fun in some strange things; like history…)

You don't want to miss the part where the tea party true believers, just like the Religious Right that Bush Junior date-raped and dumped during his elections, meet reality. Flushed with imagined power, the rank-and-file fringe element of the Baggers actually believes that the Republican Party is going to leave its Wife for them. This is the same coalition of delusional "Salt-of-the-earth" types (Blazing Saddles subreference, folks...) , paranoid old people and completely whacked out billionaires that Karl Rove cynically co-opted in 2000 by leading them on; using and abandoning them at the altar. The current tea bag herders (Hey, Karl, what’s new?) will have tired of them soon, even though the baggers will do things for them, dirty things, that no respectable political base would.

The most entertainingly insane of the bunch have already been voted off the Island. Angle lost to Harry Reid. Harry Reid! This has to be the psychic equivalent of giving your best pole dance, and still being laughed off the stage; "No-one wants to see that, honey!"

And of course Christine O'Donnell, number one on the Republican MILVF list (Moms I'd like to Vote for- Just $5.99 to access streaming video of the "news conferences"; an extra $50 gets you ten minutes for a private discussion of the Chinese conspiracy, Pinky and the Brain and, just possibly, a happy ending.) This dumbed-down (god help us…) Sarah Palin and her ilk (good word) have possible futures on “Dancing With The Stars”, FOX and the “Late Show Top Ten List”, but what about all the little, pale, pink-eyed people out in the towns and villages that have powered this movement with their energetic banality?

You can actually envision them standing outside the Capitol building in the cold, greasy light of dawn; soiled panties bunched up in their purse, no money for the bus, an ominous itch developing and hot tears of shame carving gullies through their make up. "I did it again! Oh why do I keep falling for the same sweet lies? He's probably putting those campaign videos up on Face Book for his pervert friends? Oh, God!!"

In the meantime the rest of the body politic will move on as the two vaguely more functional ends of our lunatic fringe continuum continue to do whatever we can to screw things up in more surprisingly unforeseen ways.

Here are the parts I’m looking forward to watching (Remember, though, that I do have antisocial tendencies and I’m sort of at loose ends for entertainment since “Lost” went off the air)

1. The Republican Party Civil War as Boehner and McConnell each have to play different hands for different stakes with the Baggers.

2. The bellows of dismay when the Baggers realize that they were a means to an end.

3. The continuing bellows of dismay when the mainstream Republicans realize they’ve played this hand one too many times and that they’ve lost control of the Baggers  This will start to get fun right about the time raising the debt ceiling comes up. It should be as epic as “Lord of the Rings”, with Jim Demint as Sauron.

4. The subtle maneuvering by the Republicans to torpedo Sarah Palin before she can do more damage. She cost them a possible shot at the Senate by backing candidates even less qualified than her. (You want to look thin, stand next to a fat person. You want to look sane, stand next to O’Donnell)

This coming few years can be a lot of fun if you don’t actually think about it or have any stake in the future. Turn on “E”; have a beer and wait for the end. (Of course, I don’t have any kids and the cats will probably die before me so what the hell…)

Meanwhile, somewhere out of the way in an old burnished and worn boxing ring,  Adam Smith and John Maynard Keynes continue to trade blows before a silent audience of old white guys. After many hundreds of rounds, neither seems to have a notable advantage. However, Mr. Smith is the only one that appears to be smiling.

Let's sit back and watch the fun, kids. Better bring along that well-thumbed, dog-eared copy of The Wealth of Nations, just in case we need a ruling.

Get comfortable. This is going to take a while...

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