Bottoms Up Week, Day Two
27 September, 2011 - 16:27 — Bryan Lambert
Memo to Allen West, Tom Graves, and Jim DeMint: FREE AT LAST.
Too long have you languished at the bottom of my research pile. It is time for you to spread your wings and fly, fly into the plate glass window of my harsh judgment. Fly into the airplane engine of public scorn. Plus, the more of these idiots I can get to fly out of my research pile, the more I can concentrate on topical items like Fox News turning down TIMMEH for an on-air gig. Heh. BOTTOMS UP!
I believe that yesterday, we left off with Rick Santorum making a series of wildly-inappropriate comments about what being gay is like (hint: napkins, water, and a cup of tea). Turns out Allen West, when he's not abusing Iraqi prisoners, also loves giving his expert "straight" opinion to a bunch of other "straight" Republicans about what being gay is like. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!
"You cannot compare me and my race to a behaviour. Sexuality is a behaviour. And so yeah, I said, I cannot change my color. People can change their sexual behavior. And I’ve seen people do that. You know, I grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, so I’ve seen a very different perspective on human behaviours. So that’s where I’m coming from with that….. I like chocolate chip ice cream, and I will continue to like chocolate chip ice cream. So there’s no worry about me changing to vanilla. I like to, you know, ride my motorcycle. What do you want me to do? You want me to change my behavior and ride a scooter? I’m not into that. - Allen West. During the ellipsis, he was asked if gay people should change their behavior.
What I love about this is how Allen West, more so than any time I've read about things he said, seems to have absolutely no idea what the fuck he's talking about. He seems addled, as if someone had, say, pushed him up against a wall and fired a pistol near his head. Being gay is not a civil rights struggle because it's a behavior, and people can change their behavior. Unless that behavior is eating chocolate-chip ice cream and riding a motorcycle, in which case he'll never change to vanilla and a scooter, because he's had a certain preference all his life and he's not into that other stuff.
Now, I'm not the only one who found this incredibly confusing. Luckily, Allen West was called upon to clarify his remarks, and I'm pretty sure that what he said was that if you like vanilla ice cream, you shouldn't sign up for the military, because the military has a certain way of doing things, and if you go against the Army's approved way of doing things, then you dodge a court martial, get fined five grand, and end up serving in Congress. At least, I think that's what he meant by this:
"I think that what I said is that is behavior, and so what I talked about is, look, I prefer or I like chocolate chip ice cream, and I’m not going against what someone prefers or has as their behavioral preference in their life. But when you start to understand about the United States military…the United States military serves one mission — that’s to fight and win our nation’s wars. And if we start to take the military and try to conform it to individual behaviors, no matter what those individual behaviors are, we’re going to lose the essence of what the United States military is."
Allen West may love chocolate chip ice cream, but he seems to like tossing word salad even more.
Next up, Tom Graves! Teabagger! Fiscal conservative! Balanced budget kind of guy! Georgia congressman! Did not, to my knowledge, abuse an Iraqi prisoner to get his job, which makes him a better person than Allen West, but only barely.
Graves' name came up in the news and ended up in my pile because he did what he thinks the government shouldn't do - borrow money to repair infrastructure. In Graves' case, the money was over $2 million, the infrastructure was a local motel, and when the bank sued him and his business partner for defaulting, had his lawyer argue in court that the bank should never have loaned them the money in the first place, because the bank knew they'd never be able to pay it off.
So, you know, next time some racist fuckhead tries to tell you that poor minorities getting talked into adjustable mortgages caused the economic collapse, kick them in the balls, tell them this story, then kick them in the balls again. It's the only way to be sure.
And finally, keep in mind what's ALWAYS going on in the background on the right. The endless hum of low-rent talk radio, where teabaggers and conspiracy nuts and racists and Jesus-freaks reinforcing each other on talk radio, and their anointed representatives in Congress more than willing to keep the fires stoked when they stop by. Case in point, this hyperbolic insanity from the chronically hyperbolically insane Jim DeMint.
"It has been the most anti-business and I consider anti-American administration in my lifetime. Things that are just so anathema to the principles of freedom, and everything he has come up with centralizes more power in Washington, creates more socialist-style, collectivist policies. This president is doing something that’s so far out of the realm of anything Republicans ever did wrong, it’s hard to even imagine."
It's that last bit that kills me. It's not hard to imagine. Imagining it is all Jim DeMint can do, and he is demonstrably short on basic neural function. If he can make it up out of whole cloth, anyone can. Obama's less collectivist than Richard Motherfucking Nixon, and when it comes to a discussion of "anything Republicans ever did wrong", you always start with Nixon. And then move straight to George Wallace. I think Jim DeMint could really use a bit of the old dog-and-fire-hose if he thinks eliminating pre-existing conditions is so goddamned close to the gulag.