Saturday, September 12, 2009

Point of parliamentary procedure!

Why is everybody so up-in-arms over Joe Wilson's "You Lie!" outburst during Obama's health care speech to congress the other night? I'm a hemorrhaging heart liberal and unabashed Obama supporter from way back, but I found the shout out rather refreshing. I didn't agree with the content, of course (he and I likely couldn't agree on today's date) but wasn't perturbed by the conduct. Besides, his remark only helped reinforce the president's point regarding the seeming lack of civility in the health care debate. Of course, at some level, that's exactly what I like about the health care discussion. Not as a concerned citizen, mind you, but as someone looking for a little extra comic relief out of the daily news cycle.

We're way too polite and regal in this country when it comes to official government traditions and ceremony. You wouldn't think that would be the case given our country's genesis, borne from the tyranny of the British crown. Ironically it's the Brits that it it all over us now when it comes to dispensing of civility and ceremony (well, at least when it comes to their civility - they still dress like royal dorks).

Perhaps Wilson's faux pas might be our start down that boisterous road toward British 'parliamentary procedure'? I hope so. We need more Animal House and Jerry Springer in the hallowed halls of congress and less pomp(ous) and circumstance. Enough yielding of the floor to "the Gentleman from the Great State of Yada Yada" ( I didn't realize the floor was moving such that it needed to yield, or is it just that they're all so regularly drunk it just appears to be?)

I'd like to hear just once, 'The chair recognizes Joseph Wilson, the gentleman needle dick from South Carolina, the shit hole state best known for slavery, rebel-yell Nazism, incest, pedophilia and pestilence. Herr Wilson, you represent her well in that regard, you fascist pea brain." As an example.

And what's with the ridiculous rituals for a presidential address to congress? The endless announcements of the major players by the master-at-arms, as though this was the NBA finals. And their glad-handing on the way down!  Enough, already. Finally, enough with the 55 applause cycles before the man even starts his speech. Come on! Give 'em a hand - one round of polite applause. Either that or go whole hog Beatlemania on him with swooning, screaming and whatnot. Enough of this middle-of-the-road shit.

Can't we just have Johnny Olson tell them all to "Come on Down, you're the next speaker on the Address To Congress"? After all, Joe Biden kinda looks like Bob Barker and Nancy Pelosi is surely the spitting image of at least one of the 70s Price Is Right prize models today (one who lived life hard through the 80s and 90s but then was reborn through an addiction to plastic surgeries). Maybe she even was a Price Is Right model for all I know.

I say all this only somewhat tongue-in-cheek and mainly as a reaction to the over-reaction by my fellow travelers on the left. Let Wilson's impulsive act stand on its own demerits - sort of like (and apropos to)  Dr. Strangelove's impulsive 'Sig Heil'ing and 'Mein F├╝hrer'ing at the end of that movie.  The incessant whining about it is turning this guy into a martyr for the nutso right wing rabble-rousers. That is, to people just like Joe Wilson.  More specifically, to people whose ideology appears to run just to the left of Adolf Hitler (or maybe it's just to the right - that's a tough call). There are a lot of his ilk out there in our land of milk and military industrial honey.

Let's do what we can to marginalize these wackos, not popularize them. Christ, if we had just left the wolf huntress of the Yukon alone and not called her on her illiteracy and schizophrenia at every turn, she might have faded back into the governor's igloo without haunting us further. Neither is necessarily a barrier to becoming Vice President, after all. I read the constitution and it doesn't mention either literacy or schizophrenia even once (well, maybe there's something about 'sound mind' in there, but it's debatable what that implies).

Look, Grandpa Munster didn't stand a chance at president once he picked her, she did all the work of ensuring that and certainly didn't need any help from the left wing attack dogs (yes, we have 'em too - they're just not nearly as polished as our counterparts growling over there on the other side of the plane).

Joe The Plumber Beck Limbaugh O'Reilly Cheney.  These scary monsters thrive on attention and all subscribe to that age old adage "the only bad publicity is no publicity."

Leave 'em be, don't make them martyrs.