Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Cinco de Mayo

It's a signature day in Jersey Repug politics. Joe the Plumber came fully out of the closet as a homobigot, & at a rally over at a German club in Clark NJ, Repug gubernatorial candidate Steve Lonegan accepts Joe's warm endorsement. So much for "rebranding" the same old dreary product. It's a bratwurst Cinco de Mayo.

For them that's interested, Frank L. Cocozzelli explains the difference between The Neo & Paleo Wings of the Catholic Right over at Talk to Action.

There's a paleo-catholic columnist-blogger & Lonegan enthusiast at the Star-Ledger, Paul Mulshine. He's immediately recognizable as a sourpuss Irish-American Catholic who sounds like he was whipped into a permanent bad mood by Jansenist nuns wearing starched, burlap underwear before Vatican II, & thinks rejecting his father's taste in crappy beer was an act of serious rebellion. He's had a more interesting life than that (I wonder if he was a spook) , although you'd hardly tell from his current writing. In a recent blog, Paul trotted out the hoary argument that liberals are the real racists, conspiring to keep African-Americans yoked to socialist welfare programs, undermining their self-initiative. This line of reasoning used to be advanced by yankees who said they were personally against southern Jim Crow laws but considered de facto segregation part of the Darwinian natural order, even if they didn't believe in evolution. A rank sentimentalist at heart (like all cynical, Irish prose writers who detest poetry), Paul can't bring himself to admit that Ronald Reagan inspired the very neocons that ran the guvmint during Bush II.

Joe the Plumber doesn't want gay people around his children. What kind of father would want Joe the Bigot around his own kids? A protective dad would tell Joe, "Don't even look at my children, you moronic scuzbag."

I want to like Paul. Mainly because I'm partial to a Jersey surfer's desire to ride the big ones in hurricanes. Mostly they have to make do with small ones. I feel a little sorry for writers who habitually reach for H.L. Mencken before Mark Twain; but then you realize they studied journalism in college, not literature. On the rare occasions they show up at poetry readings that aren't in bars, they're always disappointed when the poets vote to go to a diner afterward. & we usually do. So they sit at the end of the table, a bit isolated, complaining about the coffee & trying to start arguments over current events, frustrated by what sounds to them like small talk.

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