Thursday, July 05, 2007

J'Accuse

My fellow Americans, our nation is in a sorry state. The economy is faltering in most sectors. The housing market is in shambles. Though it received almost no media attention, the number of laid off people filing for unemployment rose again at the end of last month. Most of the nation is riddled with personal debt. There is an unending and badly managed war(s).

Yet, in the midst of all this, people like Lou Dobbs want to blame almost all of these problems on migrant workers. I figure if he can point fingers, so can I. Here are my list of people who are responsible for the sorry mess that we are in:

Voters Who Supported George W. Bush

    Oh, sure, Bush’s approval ratings hit a historic low last week and that was before he commuted Scooter Libby’s prison sentence. While I am really glad that people are finally waking up to what a horrible individual Bush actually is, I am also really confused that people are surprised. It’s not like Bush concealed these things during the 2000 or 2004 campaign. If he has abused power and driven the nation to a Constitutional crisis (and he has), it's because people were dumb enough to try and give him that power in the first place.

    Bush didn’t win the 2000 election. More Americans (who bothered to vote at all) voted against him than voted for him. No matter which you sliced that bad-boy up, the end result was that Bush didn’t get the popular vote and he didn’t win Florida. That’s not partisan, that’s just what happened. We didn’t get a chance to find that out, though, because the corrupt Supreme Court stepped into make sure that we didn’t get a fair election (in a 5-4 decision. Sound familiar?). When a real recount was finally done, the media largely made it a footnote because it might undermine the presidency. Yeah, funny how taking office via a bloodless coup leaves a stain of illegitimacy.



    Still, in order to even make that coup plausible, Bush and his team needed a good number of people who did actually vote for him. When it came time for him to run again in 2004, I was astounded that anybody supported him. In his first term, he mismanaged wars, left the nation vulnerable to attack, pursued illegal wiretapping, and gave a pile of money to his cronies at Haliburton.

    It turns out Bush voters hated other people more than they cared about their own interests (or the interests of the nation). They bought into Bush’s scare tactics about the Middle East and terrorism (ignoring the fact that Bush ran away and hid in a bunker on September 11 (yeah, there’s a guy who will keep you safe)).

    Those voters also really hated the gays. Bush promised to keep harassing gays and depriving them of their rights. The mean people who voted for Bush liked that message.

    Bush has lived up to his campaign promises. Read the transcripts of both elections. He never said that he would care about hurricane victims or make sure that everybody had food on the table. Instead, he said explicitly that he would keep us at war, cut taxes for the wealthy, and make sure that heterosexuals have special rights over gay people. As far as I can tell, he has done everything that people voted him to do. They seem surprised that these things didn’t make their lives better.


The State of Texas

    One of the questions that I am asked most often when I meet people through the blog is, “Is Texas really that bad?” That question usually falls somewhere between, “Do you really own all those Wonder Woman comics?” (No) and “Where is Midwestern Funky Town?” (It’s where Democratic Presidents have made numerous important announcements.).

    To my mind, Texas is much worse than people outside the state realize. Before I moved there, I thought that I understood Texas. Hell, I grew up in the neighboring state (which is NOTHING like Texas). Man, did I underestimate Texas and their commitment to hard-core right wing politics.



    People who spend their entire lives in Texas probably have no idea how out of step they actually are with the rest of the nation/continent/world. Truth is, they don’t care, either. Whether on the Texan “left” (which is not at all left) or on the right (which is very far right), Texans won’t change course or listen to criticism even if there is solid evidence that the state is moving in the wrong direction. Texas, to them, is the best place on earth and everybody can go fuck themselves if they disagree.

    Do I mean ever single person in Texas? No, obviously not. It’s a huge state with millions and millions of people. There is a diversity of opinion and perspectives there. I also have family and good friends who still live in Texas.

    All the same, however, there is an atmosphere in Texas that has tacitly condoned/promoted some of the most atrocious things that have happened in this nation over the past decades. People of color have been repeatedly attacked and murdered in the state, for instance, but Texans claim that there is no problem with racism.

    It’s also a bloodthirsty, vengeful state that is responsible for the most state-sponsored executions in the nation over the past decade. As I have mentioned previously, Bush’s actions in the Libby case compared to his time as governor of Texas makes me want to vomit. I don’t believe in the death penalty. For me, the death penalty confuses vengeance with justice. Murder is murder in my book.

    Bush commuted Libby’s two-year prison term because it was just “too harsh.” Yet, as governor of Texas, Bush literally had the power to save 152 individual lives. Instead, he allowed the state of Texas to execute all of those men and women.

    In 2000, the Chicago Tribune reported that in one-third of the cases that Bush refused to commute, the lawyer who represented the death-penalty defendant at trial or on appeal had been or was later disbarred or otherwise sanctioned. Lawyers presented no evidence at all or only one witness at the sentencing phase in 40 cases. The Tribune also uncovered evidence of a pathologist who had admitted faking autopsies. None of that, though, seemed “too harsh” to Governor Bush.

    Bush further did not feel it was “too harsh” to execute a man who was mentally retarded. Nor did he think it in poor taste to make fun of one of his death-row victims. Bush is scum and, as a nation, we can blame Texas for giving him his first grab at power.

    Texas wants the rest of the U.S. to be exactly like it. Turns out, they are winning, too. The Lone Star State has three of the nation’s largest cities within its borders. The rest of the nation has been asleep as Texas power has grown. Kill it now! It's weak when it's feeding! We might still have a chance!


Gluttonous Oil Companies

    In the past seven years, gasoline prices have skyrocketed. While I (smugly) don’t drive in Boston, I know that the price of gas hovers over $3 in this city. Given that I will move to a place that has good, but still limited, public transport, I will resume driving soon. Even my smugness needs to come to an end.

    We have never really had an explanation about this price increase. What we do know, though, is that oil companies under the Bush regime are making unprecedented fortunes.

    Long term solutions to this problem should be all the things that the oil companies loathe. Why not start with a law that restricts ownership of gas guzzling trucks and suv’s to people who actually need such vehicles? If your job is transporting anvils to blacksmiths, I might understand why one would need a ginormous pickup truck. If, on the other hand, people own a gas-guzzling vehicle because they lack a decent set of testicles or ovaries, it’s time to take away their keys. Friends don’t let friends drive ball-less.

    Until we make those changes, though, let’s recognize that the oil companies are screwing consumers. Out of all the economic woes in the nation, the cost of fuel is probably hurting American citizens the most. Yet, blame is evaded.

    I am not one who encourages people to “judge a book by it’s cover.” Still, I would like to ask those who put so much effort and passion into keeping Mexican workers out of the nation to compare these two pictures:

    One is the leader of Exxon:



    And one is a Mexican worker:



    Who do you really think is benefiting from current economic and social polices in the U.S.? Who do you think is taking money directly out of your personal pocket? Who do you think fed Boba Fett to the Sarlacc?


Any Person Who Has Ever Been on MTV’s My Super Sweet Sixteen – Ever

    Some question why there is so much hostility to the United States among different nations in the world. Tune into any episode of My Super Sweet Sixteen and all will be clear. A more spoiled, ill-informed, self-serving group of people one will never find. Any family who consents to giving their child one of these parties should immediately forfeit their wealth and be sent to build aqueducts in the middle of a desert.



    In some cases, teenagers on the show have spent over $200,000 on their little birthday parties. Sure, people are starving, but that’s no reason why Stacy can’t have a dozen stretch limos and invitations that are really engraved MP3 Players.

    From what I understand (Truth in advertising: I have never been able to watch more than a few moments before becoming so disgusted that I had to switch the channel. My knowledge comes from a story in the New York Times), the end of the show culminates with the guest of honor being presented with a new car. I hate to sound old fashioned, but back in my day, we had to earn our cars. Or at least we had to give Bob Barker the accurate price for a can of peas.


People Who Don't Rack Their Weights at the Gym

    Since I was in kindergarten, I have been told to pick up after myself in public spaces. Yet, time and time again I arrive at the gym to find that somebody has left all of their weights sitting on the bar. This has two major problems: 1) I don't know if the bar is free or if they have just wondered off for water and 2) I now have to shelve their weights for them.



    This is a matter of national pride. If the weights aren't racked, I get frustrated. If I get frustrated, I lose interest in going to the gym. If I lose interest in going to the gym, I get fat. Because I am a symbol of the nation, this makes everybody feel bad. Chaos ensues and freedom dies.

    Rack the weights.


Baroness Paula Von Gunther

    Most people don’t know the name. Based on my careful research, however, I have concluded that von Gunther has a darker and more cruel soul than Dick Cheney. Well, okay, that’s an exaggeration. Dick Cheney doesn't have a soul at all.

    Still, von Gunther has a long list of misdeeds. There are many unsolved murders connected with von Gunther. Plus, allegations exist that she sabotaged a cruise ship. It’s also well known that the Baroness has fomented hate and U.S. versions of the gestapo. She has even manipulated the nation’s milk supply in order to rob our citizens of their basic calcium.



    Oh, sure, the Baroness claims to be “reformed.” I don’t believe it for a second!


Children

    When I look around, I see one segment of society that is not at all pulling their weight: children. Quite the contrary, the nation has become obsessed with this parasitic infection of our great lands.



    Wherever children go, they leave drooly and/or stinking messes. They create unbearable noise pollution. I can also attest that children are solely responsible for the nation’s problems with the sticky.

    They eat and eat, but provide nothing in return. Don’t tell me how cute they are, either. We all know that is a dirty lie.

    When Republicans complain about illegal immigrants taking social services, let me remind them that millions and millions of children are responsible for huge drains on our economic resources. At least as a nation we have the good sense not to offer children basic access to health care or guarantee their rights as humans. Won't somebody blame the children?

    Still, those schools are awfully pricey. Get rid of the children and we will have all sorts of money to ourselves. Let’s shorten “No Child Left Behind” to “No Child.”

21 comments:

jeremy said...

Yeah, I agree with all the above listed problems. About the gluttonous oil companies--did you see that the Australian government admitted it was involved in the Iraq war because of oil?
Oh, and I'd like to add to the list, Michael Bay. (Even tho I will be seeing Transformers this weekend--hey, know your enemy, right?)

Roger Green said...

Well, I was with you until the end.

Doug said...

I rack my weights. In fact, I rack other people's weights.

Dark times are ahead. We have a long road until we see light again.

vuboq said...

Weights? What are those?

As for the child-infestation, several years ago, Bill McKibben wrote an interesting book, Maybe One, in which he argues for single-child families as a way to lessen environmental impacts. Of course, the main point of the book was to justify his (and his wife's, natch) having a child after saying that he never would in an earlier book.

Signalite said...

I can attest to several larger beings that are far worse drooly/stinking messes. And what exactly is "the sticky"? I know not of this sticky.

Chad said...

For my American West class this summer, we read "Becoming Mexican American." It was rather shocking to see a great deal of the rhetoric and circumstances of Mexican immigration haven't changed in key ways since the 1920s.

You already touched on it, but did you read this quote from Bush (or far more likely his ghostwriter), when defending the executions that took place under his governorship?:

I don’t believe my role [as governor] is to replace the verdict of a jury with my own, unless there are new facts or evidence of which a jury was unaware, or evidence that the trial was somehow unfair.

Positively infuriating.

MaggieMay said...

Would you like to move to New Zealand with me? I am sure the husband would not mind.

Baron Scarpia said...

The trouble with saying that children are just leeches is that the government presumably views them as a very long-term investment. Who else will pay exorbitant taxes when the current working generation retires?

The government seems not to view children as a very worthwhile investment, but an investment nevertheless.

jp said...

I'm giving you an award-of-the-day for the gentle way in which you worked in a well-deserved fat joke without even saying the word "Jabba."

Earl Cootie said...

Having lived in two states neighboring it, I agree with and applaud your Messing With Texas. (Just "Don't Lay That Trash On Oklahoma!") (Actually, go ahead.)

adjunct whore said...

i think justifying fuck-all policies on the basis of children is lazy and ill-informed; i think criticizing fuck-all policies on the basis of children is lazy and ill-informed.

it's so easy to be anti-kid as an academic--maybe we (by which i feel solidarity with you gp and clearly you are anything but lazy) could find more intellectually rigorous ways to demolish all the ugliness you mention.

adjunct whore said...

i forgot to mention how i remain impressed by the images you choose--love the enron on in particular.

G.A.S. said...

I think war in Iraq and Afghanistan keeps right-wing Christian types in America from having to think about gay people screwing. Oh God.

pacalaga said...

Well, don't blame me - I plan to send my kid to the sweat shops just as soon as he's old enough to sew Nikes. (He IS cute, though.) And there's always Jonathan Swift's option - two problems solved in one!

Marius said...

I agree for the most part; I hope voters who supported Bush realize that they made a huge mistake. The man was never suitable to run the country.

I can understand why you hate Texas so much, and you may be right; as a Texan, I'm used to the culture and people. Nothing really surprises me anymore.

Hm, so you suggest we get rid of the children? I'll entertain the idea. LOL

GayProf said...

Jeremy: I contemplated blaming the Decepticons, but felt that would be too commercial at this moment.

ROG: sigh Did I go too far?

Doug: Well, why aren't you around my gym? Oh, right, the thousands of miles of distance between us. Damn.

VUBOQ: I have some hetero friends in Texas who refused to have their own biological children (though they were able) and instead adopted children because of environmental/global ethical considerations. I have a lot of respect for their decision.

Signalite: Admit it: You are sticky right now.

Chad: I had not seen that quote, but I wonder why the news corps is not playing it over and over again next to a picture of Libby.

MaggieMay: If you are paying, I'll move almost anywhere (except back to Texas).

Baron: I have little doubt that Bush and crew would cut off all public education if they thought they could do so. Even they, though, aren't willing to go that far.

JP: Wait to see some of my future Sci-Fi references...

Earl: I know little about Oklahoma (except what I learn from you and a couple others). So, I have no trash to lay on it.

Adjunct Whore: While I don't like children (seriously), I hope that nobody would actually believe that I am advocating the elimination of social services for the age-challenged. If people insist on having the little brats, I think they should have education, be free of disease, and have plenty of free time so that they can scrub my fireplace.

It astounds me, though, that people can make arbitrary decisions about which groups of humans "deserve" education, health care, and a decent standard of living and which don't.

G.A.S.: Well that explains A LOT about why they are so opposed to letting gays and lesbians serve in the military.

Pacalaga: His little hands will be just the right size to get into the machinery.

You also get super-duper bonus points for your Swift reference. If only I had thought of it... Good Show!

Marius: Maybe we could send the children to their own island and test the validity of The Lord of the Flies.

adjunct whore said...

fair enough, and while i perfectly understand and agree that the way little brats are used politically in this country, discourses of family and all, i also think that the reed bends quite the opposite way in academia. for those of us who deal with shit on a regular basis, the hate-kid rhetoric is more than poltical.

but i have lots of friends who hate kids, so i understand the personal aversion--but think theoretic discussion about the repulsive way in which they are symbolically deployed is more interesting--

it's something i've been meaning to blog on for awhile and will...and hope to hear more from you too.

Arthur (AmeriNZ) said...

I left America to be with my man. Now, though, I'm every bit as much a political refugee. If you make it to New Zealand GayProf, I'm sure we could help put you up for awhile (and Maggie May--ring me when you get here; we have quite a community of refugees here now).

Anonymous said...

Out of curiousity, isn't saying you "hate kids" similar to one saying one hates gays, or Jews, or the disabled, (or any number of marginalized groups of people)? I can understand someone not wanting to be around kids and/or not wanting to have kids, but I'm stumped as to how one can uncategorically "hate" kids without it being akin to other forms of hate like racism, sexism, ageism, anti-semitism, etc. Is this really possible?

GayProf said...

Anon: I don't see where I used the word "hate" in this entry.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I should have clarified that I got the impression of hate from the combination of your post on J'Accuse and your comment on Tenured Radical's blog, which was:

"I have no interest in human worm larvae."

The hate is rather implicit, but my apologies for putting the word right in your mouth...er, blog.

And a big thank you for the further elaboration on your viewpoint regarding children, social services, etc.