Archive - Jun 2011

June 24th

Mark Of Cain

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Memo to Herman Cain: CANDIDATE, PLEASE.

I'm not doing a STMF this week, because there's an urgent topical question I need to bring my expertise to bear on, but before I get to that, let me just point out that this piddly-ass Afghanistan drawdown is bullshit. Another year and a half just to bring the troop levels down to the pre-"surge" levels? We shouldn't have been there in the first place, we're clearly planning on staying forever, and anything Obama says to the contrary is a lie. And now. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"Did you see that show? And then he mocked me with a, you know, Amos and Andy type brogue. And Sean said you didn’t see that? And I said no Sean, I didn’t see that, I’m out campaigning. And so they played the clip. And I said well Sean first of all if he really thinks that I’m serious about a bill only being three pages the joke’s on him. And I said secondly, as far as him mocking me, look I’ve been called every name in the book because I’m a conservative, because I’m black." - Herman Cain, at a campaign stop in Iowa.

That is some grade A bullshit right there.

First, Chris Wallace brought up that "Amos and Andy" thing, and Hannity apparently ran with it. I saw the bit. Herman Cain has a slightly gravelly voice and a bit of an accent. Jon Stewart did a gravelly voice with a bit of an accent. It was actually closer to Herman Cain's actual voice than most of Stewart's knowingly bad impressions.

If Stewart's impression was Amos and Andy, then the various impressions of Jeremiah Wright I've heard from Beck, Limbaugh, et al for the past three years is the love child of Al Jolson and Jar Jar Binks.

And yes, as you later explore in more detail, Black Republicans get a lot of shit. They get called "Oreo" and "Uncle Tom" and "sellout". And that's not nice, and as a general rule, I'm not a fan of insults that involve one race acting like another race, or being "white on the inside".

But at the same time, black Republicans have to understand that they're a member of a party that gets into power and stays into power by demonizing black people, harboring racists, and openly courting the votes of even more racists. So if you're doing it for the tax breaks, then yeah, you are actually a sellout. If you're doing it because Jesus wants you to hate gay people more than racists hate you, then you're just a dickhead.

But Jon Stewart isn't mocking you for being a black Republican. He's mocking you because you say stupid shit every time you open your mouth. Yeah, you say the three-page thing was a joke NOW, but I watched the video. I watched the crowd reaction. I know what a bit like when a comedian does it, and I know what a bit looks like when a politician does it. And you weren't doing a bit. You were being stupid.

For fuck's sake, I could give you the three-page-bill thing. As a gift. Just hand it over to you as a gesture of good will and pretend it never happened. Because I know, at any given campaign stop, there's a better-than-even chance you'll come out with a policy idea that's even DUMBER than the three-page bill limit. Something like, say, this:

"I’m going to have a regulatory reduction commission that I’m going to appoint that’s going to go in and determine how we make things move faster. Some regulations we need. I’m not anti-regulation. I’m just anti-too much regulation. And the people on this commission are going to be people who know something about coal, oil, shale oil, natural gas, and they will be people whose businesses or individuals who have been abused by the EPA. If you’ve been abused by the EPA like Shell Oil, I’m going to ask the CEO of Shell Oil would he like to be on this commission, and give me some recommendations."

Herman Cain is going to put the CEO of Shell Oil on a commission to determine what the list of things that Shell Oil wants to do, but the government is going to keep them from doing, should be. So under Herman Cain's plan, the only regulations that would remain in effect are regulations that prevent things the oil and coal companies don't want to do in the first place.

That's anti-regulation, unless you define "regulation" as a toothless set of meaningless papers in a binder labeled "regulations", in which case Herman Cain is regulation's biggest fan. Herman Cain's gonna make things move faster, all right. Things like the shrinking of the ice caps and the annihilation of the biosphere. It won't hurt him, it's not like Godfather's Pizza uses any plants or animals in the manufacture of its pies. But it might bug the rest of us a bit.

Herman Cain is being mocked because he is infinitely mockable. He's lucky he's only been on The Daily Show once or twice. He could be the lead segment every single night if they wanted. You're lucky the rest of the field is, in large part, as crazy and/or stupid as you are. And that The Daily Show is only 22 minutes long.