Wednesday :: Jun 7, 2006

The Prairie Homeland Comparison

by pessimist

As the Blog Lord earlier asked, Why Can't The Congress Spurn Through Reid [apologies to Rex Harrison]???

One was left to wonder if there was anyone out there at all who could inspire such actions. To paraphrase the Zen koan, when the nation is ready, the inspirer arrives:

Ineptness has ruined the GOP
by Garrison Keillor
June 7, 2006

Note to Republicans: The party's over.
[O]ne of the basic assumptions of American culture is falling apart: the competence of Republicans. You might not have always liked Republicans, but you could count on them to manage the bank. They might be lousy tippers, act snooty, talk through their noses, wear spats and splash mud on you as they race their Pierce-Arrows through the village, but you knew they could do the math.

It is painful to look at your father and realize the old man should not be allowed to manage his own money anymore. This is the discovery the country has made about the party in power. They are inept. The checkbook needs to be taken away. They will rant, they will screech, they will wave their canes at you and call you all sorts of names, but you have to do what you have to do.

So here we are at an uneasy point in our history, mired in a costly war, a supine Congress granting absolute power to a president who seems to get smaller and dimmer, and the best the Republicans can offer is San Franciscophobia?
This is beyond pitiful. This is violently stupid. After all, in the unique worldview of old elephants, San Francisco is a code word for g-a-y, and after assembling a record of government lies, incompetence and disaster, the party in power hopes that the fear of g-a-y-s will pull it through in November.
Authoritarianism is stifling. When the cultural Sturmbannfuhrers try to marshal everyone into straight lines, it has consequences for the economic future of this country.

People who want to take a swing at San Francisco should think twice. Yes, the Irish coffee at Fisherman's Wharf is overpriced, and the bus tour of Haight-Ashbury is disappointing (Where are the hippies?), but the Bay Area is the cradle of the computer and software industry, which continues to create jobs for our children.

The iPod was not developed by Baptists in Waco, Texas.

There may be a reason for this. Creative people thrive in a climate of openness and tolerance, since some great ideas start out sounding ridiculous. Creativity is a key to economic progress. I don't believe that Mr. Hewlett and Mr. Packard were gay [Both were married - to women - for many years - ed.], but what's important is: In San Francisco, it doesn't matter so much.

I see by the papers that the Republicans want to make an issue of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) in the congressional races this fall: Would you want a San Francisco woman to be speaker of the House? Will the lectern be repainted in lavender stripes with a disco ball overhead? Will she be borne into the chamber by male dancers with glistening torsos and wearing pink tutus?

People who live in mud huts should not throw mud, especially if it comes from their own roofs. As Scripture says, don't point to the speck in your neighbor's eye when you have a piece of kindling in your own.

To see them produce a ninny and then follow him loyally into the swamp for five years is disconcerting, like seeing the Rolling Stones take up lite jazz.
Running against Pelosi, a woman who comes from a district where there are known gay persons, is a nice trick, but it does draw attention to the large, shambling galoot who is House speaker now, Tom DeLay's enabler for years, a man who, judging by his public mutterances, is about as smart as most high school wrestling coaches.
If Mr. Hastert becomes the poster boy for the Republican Party,
this does not speak well for them as the Party of Ideas.
For the past year, Dennis Hastert has been two heartbeats from the presidency. He is a man who seems content just to have a car and driver and three square meals a day. He has succeeded in turning Congress into a branch of the executive branch.
Meanwhile, the Current Occupant goes on impersonating a president.
Historians are starting to place him at or near the bottom of the list. Five years in office and he doesn't have a grip on it yet. You stand him up next to British Prime Minister Tony Blair at a news conference and the comparison is not kind to Our Guy.
Somewhere in the quiet, leafy recesses of the Bush family,
somebody is thinking: "Wrong son. Should've tried the smart one."

Garrison Keillor is an author and the radio host of NPR's A Prairie Home Companion.

I rearranged the order of the Keillor article so that it was more to my liking [how vain of me!], but the entire original article is contained in the post. Any errors are my alone. Deep apologies to Mr. Keillor if this post doesn't meet with his approval.

Special to Harry Reid: this article is full of topics you should be hammering home daily. You're a smart man, and you shouldn't need a part-time volunteer blogger to tell you so. You're a brave man, or you wouldn't have taken on the Nevada boxing job and confronted the Mob.

Quit throwing in the towel. Quit leading with your chin. Quit sitting buddy-buddy in the front row via lobbyist-donated tix next to a prominent member of the opposing camp and get in the damn ring yourself!

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