Friday, October 10, 2008

Mobs and Monsters. McCain's Golem. A Picture and a Thousand Words.

Not a good day for John McCain and the Republican Party.

This evening's viewing of CNN shows an uncomfortable and embarrassed McCain trying to talk a near-hysterical town-hall crowd of supporters down from a paroxysm of fear and rage over the likelihood of an Obama win.

One particular wild-haired older woman, seen only from the back, tries with all her might to put into words the inchoate panic she feels at the thought of this Barack Obama as president: "he's... he's... [wait for it] ... an Arab," she practically whispers.

I thought she was going to say "nigger." I really did.

How did McCain react? First, he took the microphone away from her. No surprise there. Watching the exchange on Youtube, you can practically hear McCain's brain whirring: "NOT good. I can't go down in history as the leader of an ignorant, blood-thirsty lynch mob... gotta rein them in... and quick."

He tried. He changed his body language, softened his posture. He reminded the all-white crowd that this was supposed to be a battle of ideas between two distinguished senatorial colleagues, not a race war sparked by lies and innuendos. Obama is a decent and worthy leader, he told his panicked supporters, a family man who would make a fine president.

They booed him. He called for calm and dignity and his own supporters booed him.

Die-hard Republican voters want a leader who will stoke their fear, validate their prejudices, lead them to greater acts of impulsive anger, not one who tries to calm and reassure them.

They don't want McCain. They want Sarah Palin.

John McCain, in stoking the paranoid fears and racist undercurrents of his supporters, the "base" of the Republican Party, has created a Golem that is rapidly twisting out from the grip of his control. In order to subdue the Golem he has to undo his own campaign's message. He has to praise and dignify the humanity of his opponent. In attempting to control his base, McCain has no choice but to nullify what remains of his own campaign strategy, and campaign for Barack Obama.

* * * *

The zeitgeist on the Right is unmistakable: McCain may be the candidate, but Sarah Palin is the star. Did you see her smile as she dismissed the Media as a bunch of Elites, and then told Katie Couric she reads all the newspapers, every day?

Don't you love the deliciousness of her audacity - did you see her wink? Did you hear her call herself a foreign policy expert because she sees Russia from her state? She sees the moon! She's an astronaut! She knows nothing and is damn proud! What an all-American gal! Gee whiz, she makes ya feel good, don't she?!

Sarah Palin is a fantasy right out of Karl Rove's dirtiest wet dream; a sexy, snarling pit-bull for the cause of mockery, crowd-manipulation and character-smear. She can put her hand on the bible and lie about anything. She sells - and drinks - the Kool-Aid like a true Republican. In better times, happier times, she could've out-W'd Bush himself.

But the country today is tired, and can't get it up for Rove's emotional porn any more. They'd prefer sweet dreams, no more nightmares. The orgy is over.

The Alaska legislature released its report on their investigation of Sarah Palin's "Troopergate" behavior today.

As it turns out, even before we knew her name, Palin was a bully who abused the power of the Governor's office. The investigation was bipartisan, and was begun months before she was picked for the Republican ticket. She and John McCain produced every argument they could think of to suppress this report from coming out before election day, but thankfully they failed, and the truth is now known.

It is unclear how this development will affect the presidential race. One thing, however, is clear to all of us down here at GTL headquarters: it will not help Senator McCain bring the Monster he has created under control.

We began this post with a picture. We end it with a thousand words... more, actually. Read them if you need the details.

Weird times, friends. Keep your powder dry.


Brandon said...

I do love the writing on this blog, one of my faves!

Democrat Doctor said...

Sarah Palin is a true Hockey Mom. Have you known any Hockey Moms? Some of the most atrocious behavior I have personally witnessed has come from Hockey Moms and their "Gentlemen". The capper was a fist-fight in the stands of the Woburn, MA arena during a 12 year-olds game where "checking" is first allowed. The high school age ref was not in good control of the game. The Moms let him have it from the perspective of their dear future Bobby Hulls. Then the women went at each other, first with words, then with hands. Their "gentlemen" intervened and "took it outside" until the police were called. A similar incident a few years back resulted in the death of one Hockey Dad at the hands of another.

Hockey parents raise their kids to be one-dimensional. Sports win out over scholastics and intellectualism, music, drama, debate, or any non-pugilistic adolescent endeavor. My son was ridiculed by kids and coaches alike because in addition to being very athletic, he was a good student and played the violin. I usually sat by myself with a book at his games, because the book was better company than Hockey Moms and Dads.

There is one thing more terrifying than Sarah Palin proudly identifying as a hockey Mom - and yes, I think the moniker fits her perfectly. What I find more terrifying is that the American people eat it up without oven knowing what "it" is. Hockey is a hugely elitist sport in this country. The equipment is expensive, the ice time is expensive, many families can't afford this sport and steer their kids to soccer or baseball. Many hockey families have one parent who only has to work part time or not at all, allowing them to drive Bobby and Gordie and Trig around to their practices and games at all hours of the day and night. You don't see too many Blacks or Hispanics in the NHL. Not too many kids from the streets of Philly or LA. Still mostly Canadians and northern Europeans from countries were ice happens naturally and you don't need special expensive buildings to keep it there.

So believe Sarah when she says she's proud to be an ignorant, elitist, narrow-minded Hockey Mom.