October 31, 2010
Crushed by stereotypes and feeling the pain
Frank Rich has never been a fan of the Tea Party movement. In fact, it's quite clear from his columns that he sees them as evil. But that doesn't stop him from pausing to briefly switch stereotype channels and portray them as victims:
...whatever Tuesday's results, this much is certain: The Tea Party's hopes for actually affecting change in Washington will start being dashed the morning after. The ordinary Americans in this movement lack the numbers and financial clout to muscle their way into the back rooms of Republican power no matter how well their candidates perform.Where are these sinister "back rooms," and how come I never get to see them? Are they like the back rooms of places like the notorious Mineshaft?
Rich invokes plenty of right wing demons, including oil barons, Karl Rove (who owes me a lot of money, and if I can ever muscle my way into his back room I'm collecting bigtime!), and Mitch McConnell, who Rich claims "will be certain to stop any Tea Party hillbillies from disrupting his chapter of the club." Aww come on Frankie boy! This country has a long history of uncouth hillbillies spitting on the carpets of the elite.
In another solemn declaration, Pastor Rich pontificates thusly:
"What the Tea Party ostensibly wants most -- less government spending and smaller federal deficits -- is not remotely happening on the country club G.O.P.'s watch."How could Rich possibly know that? Is he privy to the darkest inner sanctums of the GOP's back rooms? And if he is, then what does that suggest about Rich? Is he, um, into that kind of stuff?
Or might this all be just wishful thinking on the man's part? I guess Halloween is as good a time as any to be whistling past the graveyard.
Accompanying the piece is a cartoon depicting a generic "Tea Party hillbilly" type stomping on a prone demonstrator, while hovering over his head is a gigantic, corporate-looking wingtip shoe, about to piteously crush both the hillbilly and his Code Pink victim.
OK, so I don't know whether to laugh or get into another one of my rages against stereotypes, but it strikes me that stereotypes -- be they villains or victims -- are all Frank Rich and his ilk know. This latest piece is about as sensitive and insightful as a conspiracy tirade about the usual Bilderberger Bush Kerry Skull-and-Bones Trilateral-Commission Council-on-Foreign-Relations 911 stuff. Just throw in whatever stereotypes you like, set the mix on "blend," and VIOLA! Another conspiracy column!
As for me, I keep trying to find my proper stereotype and I can't. Clueless fool that I am, I'm a Tea Party supporter who just can't quite appropriately channel the hillbilly thing, any more than I could appropriately channel the corporate back rooms (wherever they are). I'll never make it as a corporate hillbilly from Hell, because people like Frank Rich won't let me.
Hell, last night I even had trouble channeling Andy Warhol.
Oh the pain.
Just don't ask me to channel a corporate fat cat like Frank Rich.
I simply lack the guts to appropriately stereotype his doughnut-munching authoritarianism, even if he deserves it.
posted by Eric on 10.31.10 at 12:39 PM
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