Rant. Muse. Eat. Sleep. Recycle.
Friday, October 28, 2005
Half a head of lettuce
A joke: A grocery clerk is approached by a big, strapping Texan in the produce section, who says: "Son, I want to buy me half a head of lettuce. Can you help me?" The young clerk, who knows the store only sells full heads of lettuce, replies. "Just a second, I'll be right back." And, he heads off to the employee section, but unbeknownst to him, he has the big Texan right behind. As soon as the door shuts behind the both of them, he shouts out to his friend, "Lou! Some idiot Texan wants to buy half a head of lettuce!" Before he can laugh about it, he sees that his friend is looking over his shoulder at something; he turns around and sees the big Texan.
..." and this fine gentleman wants to buy the other half," he adds.
In my opinion, the clerk's fast thinking is pretty much the daily strategy for the federal government and increasingly, local and state governments: make fun of the rank and file until you're busted and then vamp your ass off.
It's grown to such an artform, this lack of respect for the electorate, that I'm not sure Harriet Miers was ever a "real" candidate for the Supreme Court. In the convoluted poli-thinking of of our two groups of lords and masters, Miers may have just been a dodge, a ruse to get Bush's base riled up and back into fear mode, where they are easily manipulated. Since Roe v. Wade can't be overturned by conservatives (how could they replace its galvanizing effect without re-instituting slavery?), they've got to slap their base in the face ("See? We're considering a moderate," they warn) and then offer something more to the conservatives' liking -- ineffectual, but more to their liking.
The Dems get a free pass with their constituency, too. They get to crow that their push for a moderate brought Miers to the fore, but, "Oh! those horrible Republicans have torn her down!" I almost laughed when I read Barbara Boxer, a Democrat, offer this backhanded support of Miers.
"They wouldn't have done that to a male candidate," she said.
It's getting pretty thick.
I blog here because I am positive that we know less and less how real government operates. Looking at it logically and scientifically (sorry, Intelligent Design people), the culture of money and politics that has supplanted diplomacy has to have evolved over the course of 200+ years. Lobbying is a billion-dollar business and, like advertising, it learns new tricks each season. We aren't privy to those tricks and politicians aren't inclined to share.
So, we are the the United Secrets of America, and rule No. 1 is don't share information with the public. How on earth, then, are we to be an informed electorate? The cliche is that we can't handle the truth. I don't think we can handle the lies.
link | posted by Jae at 7:39 AM |
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