Sunday, March 1, 2009
They say that what the mind doesn’t know anything about, the mind is afraid of.
The other day I caught the tail end of Mitt Romney’s address at the American Conservative Union’s annual conference, CPAC. As I usually do with Mitt Romney speeches, I wasn’t giving the man my full attention because I was also busy strangling puppies. It helps control my rage and their yelps help muffle some of the more offensively stupid things he utters.
As I was making my way through my sixth Pomeranian, Mittens had a notable applause line. It was something about liberals (surprise, surprise) saying America “dictates” to other nations. Romney contended that liberals need to study their basic history better because America is the country that frees millions from dictators, not the country that tells other people what to do. I think “basic” is the operative word in the first part of that sentence.
In my high school history classes America’s behind-the-scenes dictatorial ways were as standard a part of the curriculum as the Great Depression and Reaganomics. People, even myself once upon a time, sometimes say the idea of an American Empire is bullshit because we don’t have an imperial power system and we don’t exercise direct control over other people. That is a terribly basic way of looking at things; the truth of the matter is the American Empire works through indirect influence and arm-twisting to achieve the motherland’s ends through damn near any means necessary. This has been an continuous and integral part of United States foreign policy since the days of William McKinley and the Spanish-American War. Any historian capable of reading and writing will not say otherwise. Sounds like a neomarxist intelligentsia conspiracy to trash America’s good name, right? Leave it to the freedom loving, God fearing conservapatriots of the United States to protect Lady Liberty’s good name.
I expect people like the stars of Jesus Camp to espouse red-white-and-blue-drenched sentiments like ‘America does not dictate, America frees’ but to hear it from the mouth of a prominent Republican and potential 2012 candidate is unnerving but unfortunately not unordinary. But what is odd is that after that line, the ballroom–filled with tie-wearing media members and professionals–stood up and began chanting “USA! USA! USA!” To see people in a professional environment partaking in the shenanigans of overall toting horse fuckers is puzzling at best and disturbing at worst to this east coast elitist. And those of us with some semblance of self-respect and self-control are deemed unpatriotic for not rising to our feet and joining in an idiotic chant with a gaggle of idiots. With behavior like this, is it any wonder the Republican Party is stumbling around headless?
I know plenty about the GOP, but I don’t know whether I should roll my eyes, shake my head in disapproval, be afraid, or just laugh my ass off. Either way, after the white collar conservatives and their plastic fingers cleared the room, and all the Mexicans came out of the woodwork to steam clean the now cummy floors (there’s nothing neoconservatives love more than America), I did relearn one very important fact: I fucking hate Mitt Romney.