Sneaked out of Sun Tzu and shuffled across the concrete campground to use the men’s room and perform morning ablutions in the sanitary facilities provided by our congenial hosts.
Still shaking out cobwebs of greyhounds and grilled cheeses, I stumbled on an attractive double-DVD pack of Sarah Palin documentary films, available for the always-low price of $15. What a steal!
Everyone is familiar with “Going Rogue,” a classic in the Tea Party canon. I was more intrigued by the accompanying “The Undefeated,” a curious title for a documentary on a subject who as recently as three autumns ago suffered a crushing setback in a fairly prominent political race.
A blurb on the cover, from the “Daily Caller,” offered the inspiring “I’m reminded of the orginal Rocky.”
Cool, I thought. No one will deny she’s got the eye of the tiger. Probably the pelt, too. On the reverse side, an anonymous reviewer promised the contents therein would “STUN” viewers. That wouldn’t surprise me. Then, still in the grip of a morning stupor, I let the package slip from my fingers.
It clattered on the floor next to my feet, and I turned around furtively to see if anyone was watching. I wasn’t alone.
I felt like I’d just dropped a DVD package containing “Gangbangs of New York” and “Saturday Night Beaver” at a church revival meeting. That’s when I realized how far out of step I am with the American cultural zeitgeist.
I was worried someone would discover I’d been fondling Sarah Palin surreptitiously and mistake me for a Tea Party zealot. What was I worried about? Nowadays, the barely literate, know-nothing plaints of Tea Partiers have gone mainstream. Every purveyor of respectable opinion from CNN to the New York Times gives equal time to beliefs of all stripes, regardless of their relationship with fantasy worlds.
You don’t believe in evolution? I don’t understand scientists, either. You still want to see the president’s birth certificate? I’d love to see his madrasah diploma. Kris Kringle Krazy? Kalamity Kry Kiddies!
Just for fun, let’s just take a look at the Tea Party’s “non-negotiable” core beliefs, as graciously provided by teaparty.org:
1. Illegal Aliens Are Here Illegally.
OK, got me there. Checkmate.
2. Pro-Domestic Employment Is Indispensable.
What the fuck does that mean? Does this mean the Tea Party is firmly in the corner of maids and butlers, gardners and chauffeurs, nannies and cooks? That’s nice. But, um, aren’t most of these people non-English-speaking, swarthy-skinned, illegal aliens nowadays? Maybe it just means the Tea Party stands firm against foreign employment. Who the fuck knows?
3. Stronger Military Is Essential.
“Stronger” than who? Stronger than what? The Death Star? We’ve already got a military-industrial juggernaut without peer, the greatest killing machine in history, an arsenal that dwarfs the nearest challenger, China, by roughly a factor of 7-to-1. Can’t we just be proud of that and call it good?
4. Special Interests Eliminated.
I’m special, so special. I gotta have some of your attention. Give it to ME!
5. Gun Ownership Is Sacred.
Sacred. Like a cow. Or a virgin mother. Check.
6. Government Must Be Downsized.
With you here. How about lopping off a chunk of that $698 billion we spent on military ventures last year? Oh, sorry. Just being cheeky.
7. National Budget Must Be Balanced.
My checkbook? That’s my business. Just keep government off my back. (But keep my welfare checks coming, please.)
8. Deficit Spending Will End.
And John Maynard Keynes will die!
9. Bail-Out And Stimulus Plans Are Illegal.
Particularly when championed by a socialist-Muslim-foreign-born president who just happens to be black. And a Democrat!
10. Reduce Personal Income Taxes A Must.
Isn’t that Warren Buffet a shameful class warrior?
11. Reduce Business Income Taxes Are Mandatory.
Absolutely. How can we expect the Job Creators to create more minimum-wage jobs if we keep taxing the will to create jobs right out of them? One of these days the Job Creators are going to say “fuck this shit” and start creating all those minimum-wage jobs overseas, where shoeless Indonesian children will gratefully work for 28 cents an hour.
12. Political Offices Available To Average Citizens.
God Bless America.
13. Intrusive Government Stopped.
Except for darker-skinned people who move about suspiciously. And domestic workers. We are staunchly pro-Domestic!
14. English As Core Language Is Required.
No irony here, I suppose. I’m not sure, but I’m thinking at least half of the native-Spanish speakers who work in the fast-food emporium I currently occupy could, if asked, produce clearer English than the nitwit who typed out this nonsensical platform.
15. Traditional Family Values Are Encouraged.
Like the death penalty, for one. And no welfare for children of unemployed heroin addicts. You get the idea. Family values. My family uber alles. Fuck yours.
Sorry. I had envisioned a quick-hitting, off-the-cuff, sillyass post before getting to work on a current backlog of stories. Not a turgid diatribe.
Seems just a moment ago I was waltzing across the parking lot, admiring the seemless canopy of blue sky stretched above the muscular, treeless hills of Silicon Valley. I took a moment to marvel at the peculiar genius of the American strip mall, and noted that most of the big box stores – the Best Buy, the Ross Dress for Less, the Dollar Tree, the PetSmart – had yet to open. I congratulated myself on getting an early start for once.
Now it is encroaching on noon, and I haven’t accomplished a thing.
I just hope Sarah reconsiders her decision and throws her fashionable hat into the GOP race for 2012.