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Monday, September 01, 2008

Sarah Palin & The 80%

Why would someone write about Sarah Palin but place an image of Marie Antoinette in the article?

Because Marie Antoinette was the quintessential "compassionate conservative." When informed that the people of Paris had no bread to eat, the empress is reported to have replied, "Then let them eat cake." The phrase has lingered in our language for several centuries now. And why? Because it's a perfect example of someone being completely out of touch.

Not out of touch with those within her "world," but those outside of her economic and social orbit. For someone enjoying the fruits of a fuedal-style form of life (at least on the rich side of it), keeping one's bearings is dependent soley upon checking the references of all those who live in nearby castles. The empress, if anything, understood her base.

The United States has had presidents who, although born into and raised with great wealth, fashioned a credible and sincere form of sympathy for the masses. Franklin Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy are two who come to mind. However, America has swung mightily towards the worship of wealth to the exclusion of government. The masses (as Coke Roberts likes to refer to us) don't exist. Oh, wait. Yes, at election time. But not at governing time.

Currently there is great swirl about Gov. Palin. The public conversation revolves around her inexperience, behavior as governor of Alaska, her NRA membership, her views on abortion, her physical appearance, et cetera......

What I haven't heard is that little "governing bit," which the Republicans still can't get the hang of in this century. It's not "the economy, stupid," but "economics, stupid." You don't have to have a professorship in the subject, just a decent grasp on reality. One needs to ask two important (actually critical) questions:

1: Who writes the rules for how we live in this nation?
2: Who enforces those rules?

Answer: The Congress. They write them....or their lobbyists do. And whatever president in power at the time enforces them. According the Constitution. If you believe in it.....ha ha ha. (hat tip to George W.)

Those said rules have changed...slowly but perceptively towards an America that is rich in both riches and poverty. At the current rate, each generation is going to have to accept lowered expectations than the generation before. That is, for the bottom 80%; those who don't really "count" to those accustomed to a plutacracy. A Kingdom of the wealthy unbeholden to anyone who is not.

During the Saddleback rodeo, John McCain jokingly answered a question as to what his definition of rich is by saying that anyone making $5 million a year or more. It is revealing...that sarcastic dismissal of what to me was the most important question asked.

John McCain has a similar approach to the healthcare of veterans. His plan is simple (as all "great" ones are): when you leave the service, find somebody really rich and marry them. By turning his back on his "comrades" McCain has proven in vote after vote that they were never comrades at all.

It is the votes that count. And how Gov. Palin approaches the subject of the general welfare is more important than any other topic that will be covered. Sadly, promoting the general wefare was a phrase used several centuries ago...and nowadays will be twisted by the Republicans (again) into a clarion alarm for getting deadbeats off the government teat.

Unless you're on acid and working at The Weekly Standard, you might figure out that the general welfare of the republic invovles everyone, not the top 20%.

There has not been enough sunshine in America for years. This election is either going to open the door to a new sunrise, or lead us into the shadows of twilight. Again.

Onto the stage of Karl Rove's Thousand Year Reich comes Sarah Palin. While charming, she does not appear to be deflected from the same banana republic agenda of the status quo. And if we should (God forbid) enter that economic darkness; should a President Palin ever be told that Americans don't have any bread, expect the predictable:

"Let them eat moose."

*****Reuters has picked up this entire post... Thank You!

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Anonymous Infidel753 said...

Marie Antoinette was born into a privileged world of extreme wealth in the midst of a society in obscene poverty. She neither knew nor cared anything of how the masses of people outside her aristocratic circle lived. Sarah Palin's parents were a schoolteacher and a secretary; she worked her way up through business and local politics. After she became mayor of Wasilla she cut the mayoral salary in order to save the town money. She comes from that proletarian rural population that turned out in droves for Hillary in places like West Virginia and Pennsylvania during the primaries (part of why McCain chose her to appeal to the PUMAs, I think) -- a far less privileged background than most high-level politicians of either party. Marie Antoinette is hardly an apt comparison.

should a President Palin ever be told that Americans don't have any bread

Not very likely. It would take a near-total collapse of the nation's agricultural output to even put a dent in the obesity epidemic.

6:48 PM  
Blogger DukeofMadness said...

The point is not where Sarah Palin has been, but rather where she is GOING. A bohemian origin does not indicate a future relating to the masses (the 80%). A Marie Antoinette is an apt comparison because it is the DEEDS of these people, resulting from an irresistible urge to pull any ladders they climb up behind them.

It is a very little known fact that Americans did indeed starve after the last collapse of pedal-to-the-metal unregulated capitalism. Agricultural output in 1932 was quite good, but people had no money to buy it.

9:51 PM  
Blogger BadTux said...

Yes indeed, Depression-era food riots scared the oligarchs shitless. Scared them enough that they censored it out of daily newspapers nationwide in order to prevent people from "getting ideas". Scared them enough that they allowed enough of FDR's "New Deal" programs to go into effect in order to prevent mass starvation, because starving people in the midst of plenty (food rotting in the stores because nobody has the money to buy it) become desperate and will take the oligarchs down with them in the end.

And the response of the Republicans then?
"There is no poverty in America."
- Dr. Ray Lyman Wilbur, Secretary of the Interior, 1931

"Let them eat cake", indeed...

- Badtux the History Penguin

10:42 PM  

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