The History Channel

I just finished watching Sarah Palin’s speech at the Fox-sponsored teabagger “rally,” hosted by Glenn Beck on this day to mock and dishonor Martin Luther King, or maybe just because.  They’ve lied quite a bit about that subject, so I’m not going to presume to know the real motive.  The speech was quite weird, and even more disturbing than I expected.  Sadly, ol’ Sarah decidedly wasn’t speaking off the cuff, (or palm, as far as I could tell…) so we won’t need to add any new words to the dictionary this time, but the content of her words, mindless glorification of three lost, pointless wars, was quite ominous.  It seems that the one thing all ‘baggers can agree on, when they’re trying to be “non-political,” is that America is only as great as its Military Industrial Complex, which is pretty great, admittedly.  The shouts of “USA!  USA!” after the Vietnam vet was introduced were reminiscent of nothing if not History Channel Hitler documentaries.  Sarah’s message was the same as the “Good Germans” in Kander and Ebb’s Cabaret:” Tomorrow Belongs to Me,” and the cleansing victory will be found on the battlefield.  (In Palinese, “battle-filled….)

You see, it would be too “political” to yammer as usual about “wealth redistribution,” ACORN, The New Black Panthers, and whatnot, although this is the real message of the teabagger’s wealthy sponsors, so they settled on the awesomeness of war, no matter which, much less why.    Palin is the perfect messenger for this twisted and destructive bloodlust; she bragged about sending one of her many children into the military meatgrinder, and the crowd went wild.  Still, the studied blandness of her obviously ghost-written words that followed, with banal and insultingly shallow allusions to Washington, Lincoln, and of course Martin Luther King, belied their darker meaning: Fox News, Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin and their many imitators and followers have decided that from here on out, America will forever be at war, and they’re, for once, probably right.

Land of the free and home of the brave, my ass….  this bunch of armchair “warriors” want nothing more than to watch their country go bankrupt cheering “USA!” as trillions of taxpayer dollars are permanently diverted from urgent domestic needs to pointless and expensive wars hither and yon.  Small Government and less spending?  You can forget that.  The ‘baggers are either too dumb or too psychotic to do the math on this subject, and  Queen Sarah obligingly gave them a little of both, as you’d expect.

Of course, Martin Luther King deplored war, fought for what Glenn Beck sneeringly derides as “social justice,” and probably rolled over in his grave when he heard Beck describe the first African American President of the United States a a racist , but never mind all that.  For America’s Honor to be Restored, all we have to do is keep fighting in, dying in, and paying for wars, while Sarah Palin “pals around” with sterling civil rights activists like, say, Dr. Laura.  What would Dr. King have thought of Palin telling that racist harridan to “reload?”

Despite the guarded words and the wounded vets trotted out as props, the noticeable drops in the crowd’s enthusiasm when she said something insufficiently bellicose was telling:  the teabaggers are itching for war, at home and abroad, and they have found it in Sarah, looking fetching as ever dressed as War President Barbie.

The teabaggers have a dream, alright, and it isn’t a pleasant one.


  1. dirigo says:


    “For both art and life depend wholly on the laws of optics, on perspective and illusion; both, to be blunt, depend on the necessity of error. From the very first, Christianity spelled life loathing itself, and that loathing was simply disguised, tricked out, with notions of an ‘other’ and ‘better’ life. A hatred of the ‘world,’ a curse on the affective urges, a fear of beauty and sensuality, a transcendence rigged up to slander mortal existence, a yearning for extinction, cessation of all effort until the great ‘sabbath of sabbaths’ – this whole cluster of distortions, together with the intransigent Christian assertion that nothing counts except moral values, had always struck me as being the most dangerous, most sinister form the will to destruction can take; at all events, as a sign of profound sickness, moroseness, exhaustion, biological etiolation. And since according to ethics (specifically Christian, absolute ethics) life will always be in the wrong, it followed quite naturally that one must smother it under a load of contempt and constant negation; must view it as an object not only unworthy of our desire but absolutely worthless in itself.”

    … from “The Birth of Tragedy”
    … By Friedrich Nietzsche

    • cocktailhag says:

      Great quote. It’s been a hundred years since I read Nietzche. Thanks.

      • dirigo says:

        I’m a very serendipitous, or, synergistic, reader.

        Believe it or not, I was making my rounds in New York on Thursday and happened again on Arnold the book seller.

        On nice days Arnold sits in a folding chair on the Park Avenue sidewalk between 21st and 22nd Streets.

        He has a card table stacked with paperbacks, all classical stuff: fiction, poetry, plays, criticism, history, and philosophy. Not a bad book in the pile.

        Five bucks each.

        Last time I walked by Arnold’s book table (the first time I went by actually) I bought a novel I’d never heard of by Virginia Woolf, and the famous book on mythology by Edith Hamilton.

        Arnold likes to chat up the books as you peruse them, and before you know it, you’ve bought a couple.

        Ten bucks.

        I’ve been wanting to ask him whose attic or abandoned town house he’s been into lately in order to get such stuff.

        Anyway, last week I bought an old Doubleday Anchor (1956) copy of two essays by Nietzsche: “The Birth of Tragedy” and “The Genealogy of Morals”.

        I’d be happy to give a lecture on the material, or read from it, at the Lincoln Memorial, if I could get a booking.

        • cocktailhag says:

          Last time I read Hamilton was in Greco-Roman Civ. in high school; that was a great class, and that book is the mythology bible, no pun intended….

        • Serendipity. I’m reading it too — from the Gutenberg Project, on my new iPad — and just for the hell of it, in German. If it was a hundred years ago that the Hag read it, it must have been 150 for me. Anyway, I was much too young, although the sheer arrogance of it was pretty aphrodisiac for a kid just learning the etiquette of hating all authority.

          I’ve always wondered what it was like in the original, but avoided it because, apart from Rilke, there’s nothing more difficult for a non-native reader. Even Goethe is loads easier. As it turns out, it is difficult, but it’s also exhilarating. He really was a helluva writer.

          • dirigo says:

            Hey WT, how’s things?

            A minor correction is in order I suppose.

            The quote above, while contained in the book I cited, is actually from Zarathustra.

            I’m reading the main essay about tragedy now, and, typically, it’s got a lot to do with the Greeks. But there was some stuff ahead of it, which included what I used here.

            I wish I could read it in German. Maybe in another lifetime.

  2. michlib says:

    I sleep so much easier knowing that Lonesome Rhodes and Wassila’s finest are working to restore any lost honor our country may have suffered. Thanks for the sneak peek at what fascist America woll look like Glenn and Sistah Sarah.
    Time to kick these clowns to the curb.

  3. The Heel says:

    You think Tom is still in Washington?

    Maybe he missed the Koch-Tours bus and now is stranded…

  4. mikeinportc says:

    “Maybe he missed the Koch-Tours bus and now is stranded…”

    Or his head(or something) finally exploded, from a cognitive dissonance overload.[Really do wish him well in finding a sense of humor. Maybe that search is taking longer than expected? ;) ]

    • cocktailhag says:

      I worry about Tom when he’s gone this long…. A guy like that probably gets punched a lot.

      • dirigo says:

        I miss the SOB. Can’t kick a dog like that too long before you fall in love with him.

        Well, perhaps I’m getting ahead of myself, and he would be mortified (never gets the joke after all).