categories: Cocktail Hour / Don't Talk About Politics
Like most of my fellow Americans, I recently got a piece of mail from my state congressional representative, a survey he claims will help him determine what his priorities should be since he is, after all, representing me. It’s a push-poll, of course, with origins in a national “conservative” vision, several local twists added to add authenticity, the most toxic proposals attributed to the weakest local links, these dumb local reps desperate for favor. I put conservative in quotes because the vision is anything but—it’s a radical corporatist agenda, the one that operatives like Scott Walker in Wisconsin have been drafted and bribed and elevated by the obfuscation machine to put in place. And there’s Governor Scott in Florida (“Scott” must be a code word, or maybe a brand of cyborg). And of course here in Maine there’s our own new governor, Paul “38% of the vote” LePage, who has declared Maine “Open for Business.” (“Everything Must Go,” might be more to the point.) The corporatist vision comes with a playbook and various scripts, the right words for every situation, and these words are written on the backs of large checks slipped into deep pockets. Smaller government is the main rallying cry, and for simple reason: the only entity that can challenge corporatism is government (though it’s nice for corporatism to have its own army, so certain functions are accepted). The idea that a budget crisis means we can’t afford to regulate anything or really do anything non-lethal as a people and as a society is firmly embedded in these instructions. Taxes are evil. Labor is the enemy. Environmental concerns are sweet but ultimately extravagant in the face of the budget crisis. There is no budget crisis when it comes to the military. Accountability refers to teachers and welfare recipients, never to CEOs. To hide their true selves from the supporters they are hurting and even ruining with their favored policies, the radical corporatist overlords talk about freedom a lot. (Soon I’ll start ranting about Soylent Green.) When that starts to get too transparent, look for abortion talk, welfare, guns, immigration, and Jesus, sometimes all in one sentence.
Back to the questionnaire I got today. The survey questions are set up so that the Radical Corporatist answer is the only reasonable-sounding option. It goes something like this:
My fellow concerned citizen! We want to hear from you! Your answers to the following questions will help us make the hard decisions needed to cut spending! Because spending is bad!
1. We’re in a budget crisis that will force us to make hard decisions to find the savings to balance the budget. What do you believe should be the number one priority for state legislatures as we deal with this crisis? (Check one):
[ ] Using amazing and completely benign new technologies to drill for gas and oil.
[ ] Changing the socialist minimum wage law to a liberty-loving maximum wage.
[ ] Cutting back on frivolous expenses, such as state parks and “art” and the maintenance of old people and bridges.
[ ] Streamlining government so it stops choking the life out of grandma with Medicare costs she never asked for.
[ ] Job growth (to sixty hours a week!)
[ ] More guns.
[ ] Health care for the deserving.
[ ] Putting lobbyists where they belong: in charge of regulatory agencies.
[ ] Making sure all 50 state supreme courts are business friendly!
2. Benevolent gatherings of fine people (affectionately called “companies”) are poised to step in where government has failed. Do you favor (check one):
[ ] Getting out of the way and letting these saints do their jobs.
[ ] Disease and starvation on a global scale, with special attention to you and your family.
3. We’re in a budget crisis. To help solve this crisis, would you rather:
[ ] Have your head kicked in and your children thrown off cliffs by jack-booted union librarians who will feast on their guts then shit on your carpets.
[ ] Work seven delightful days a week in a comfortable air-conditioned office?
4. Taxes are a burden none of us likes.
[ ] Fair’s fair! For every $100 I pay, everyone else should pay $100 too.
[ ] Some very nice people who haven’t hurt anyone in their whole lives should have a worse tax burden, just as they would in bloodsucking socialist systems, paying thousands or even tens of thousands for every hundred I pay (and this includes the benevolent gatherings of fine people referenced above).
5. Healthcare is getting gosh-darned expensive! Check one:
[ ] Drug addicts should be allowed to enter our homes and ransack our jewelry boxes and dearest old family photos looking for medications we have forgotten to take in their sick quest to remember enough English to dominate town meetings and bully doctors and EMTs into overtreating them.
[ ] America has the best healthcare system in the world!
6. There are many competing theories in the world. Should we:
[ ] Just believe what snooty scientists say when it’s obvious that the weather is just fine most of the time and the earth is 6400 years old, and anyway the rapture is coming.
[ ] Trust Jesus, who wrote the Bible.
7. Our labor laws reflect the concerns of former centuries. Would you rather:
[ ] Be hit in the face with hornet’s nests and stabbed with old AIDS syringes by raging inner-city teens.
[ ] Repeat pleasant work procedures all the live-long day in the cheerful company of charming and industrious children?
8. The current legislature worked hard to get where they are today! Do you favor:
[ ] Allowing crybabies to unseat our knights in shining armor through communist-style putsches disguised as “recall elections.”
[ ] Redrawing all legislative districts everywhere so as to include Utah and the payroll of Exxon/Mobil, also that county in Florida, what’s it called?
9. Ronald Reagan, the best president in the history of the world (predicted in the Constitution, which was also written by Jesus), said “Government isn’t the solution, Government is the problem.” Do you favor:
[ ] Letting Jimmy Carter fly a helicopter into the desert to solve our problems, ha-ha-ha.
[ ] Disbanding the government except for the military and the bailout part of the Federal Reserve in favor of just simply letting the benevolent gatherings of good people referenced above take over and do it right?
10. It’s great that George W. Bush and Dick Cheney finally got Bin Laden.
[ ] True.