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You Will Anyway: GOP BS in a Nutshell
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
GOP BS in a Nutshell
What you didn't see in primetime, from Arthur Davis to Ted Cruz, and from one 2016 contender to another, was the GOP embarking upon the task of seeing exactly how much nonsense it could produce at top volume before democracy screams and gives up, like Noriega in Panama when they played the metal music at him.
It was something to see, I'll tell you. An entire evening based on a demonstrable lie.
The theme was We Did Build It.
There was Jack Gilchrist from New Hampshire, the metal-shop owner, who was briefly an important Romney surrogate until it was revealed that his company took a few cool millions in small-business loans. There was Sher Valenzuela, running for lieutenant governor of Delaware, who talked about how she and her husband Did Build their business. She also talked about her husband, who was a soldier, and her father, the former drill sergeant and "a blue-collar union guy." She did not talk about her sideline, which is giving PowerPoint presentations to people — probably, I am sure, not in convention centers built with tax dollars — on how to suck up government contracts. There was a similar thing going on with Bob McDonnell, the slippery, up-and-coming transvaginalist of Virginia, who proved that his family Did Build It, by having his father join the army, his children doing the same, and himself, finding the "same job" in government once held by Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry. After listening to this laughable bafflegab for a spell, you begin to wonder whether or not the U.S. military is a rather large venture-capital concern with anti-tank weapons.
It was about halfway through the speech given by Mary Fallin, by the grace of a pitiless god the governor of Oklahoma, where I finally came close to losing it. She rolled herself into this remarkable passage:
[...Oklahoma] was built and settled by pioneers moving west to seek better lives. During the Great Land Run of 1889, thousands of families rushed to put a stake down on empty plots of land. They built tent cities overnight. They farmed the land and they worked hard. And, in 1897, eight years after the land run, a handful of adventurous pioneers risked their own money — not the federal government's money — to drill Oklahoma's first oil well, the Nellie Johnstone. By doing so, these early-day pioneers changed the future and Oklahoma forever and today Oklahoma is one of the nation's key energy producers and job creators. President Obama wants us to believe that Oklahomans owe that success to the federal government — to the Department Of Energy,to the EPA, to the IRS, or maybe even to him. Mr. President, we know better. As we say in Oklahoma, that dog won't hunt.
[...] My god, Oklahomans wouldn't even have Oklahoma without the federal government, without the Homestead Act of 1889 or the Railroad Act — both, by the way, achievements of Republican presidents named Abraham Lincoln and Benjamin Harrison. And the land wasn't exactly "empty," Governor. It got emptied by a big-government program called the United States Army. You know what your state would be without the federal government, Governor, without the votes for the legislation from congressmen from the east and north, without the soldiers from New England and the Great Lakes? You know what Oklahoma would be?
Sand, with a whole lot of pissed-off Native Americans.
Good call, Charlie. Except I think maybe that’s what it IS, even without those things.
It was an entire evening based on demonstrable lies told in service to the overriding demonstrable lie. And there was only one real story for actual journalists to tell at the end of it.
The Republicans simply don't care.
The Republicans will just tell the lie again. And again. And once more, until people get tired of telling the truth in response.
[New Jersey Governor Chris] Christie rang the theme of the evening's overriding demonstrable lie, too. He talked about how his family Built It, his Irish father and his Sicilian mother.
They both lived hard lives. Dad grew up in poverty. After returning from Army service, he worked at the Breyer's ice-cream plant in the 1950's. With that job, and the GI Bill, he put himself through Rutgers University at night to become the first in his family to earn a college degree.
Chris, old man, you didn't even build yourself yourself. The tax dollars — the federal tax dollars — of, among other people, my parents paid your father's Army salary, and they paid for the G.I. Bill. The tax dollars of thousands of other people paid for his education at Rutgers, which is, as it proclaims, The State University Of New Jersey. All of them were proud to do it, because they knew that they were part of a political commonwealth that has as its proudest expression a national government in which all citizens have purchase.
And, Chris, and Bob, and Sher, and Jack, and all of you, you're welcome.