As I contemplate the coming election, I do wonder if a sort of cultural turning point hasn’t been reached, which was elucidated lo these many decades ago by Huey Lewis and the News – that it’s soon might be seen to be hip to be a square. Or to put it in standard English – if being sober, responsible, cheerfully working at a blue-collar and non-corporate job, engaged in a traditional man/woman marriage, and living out in flyover country somewhere, and being a traditionally patriotic, fiscally responsible, striving small business entrepreneur and home-schooling more than the requisite one or two designer-perfect offspring … might be the default option for the rebellious and non-conformist? I mean, really – look around at the current social and educational landscape in some of our larger and supposedly more urban and urbane environments. Take a good long look; I have a stack of barf-bags handy. What could be more logical than to rebel against such decay, despair, conformity and criminality than to stake out a suburban (or even rural) homestead in flyover country somewhere and wholly become what the putrid 1960’s retreads were rebelling against in the first place?

Look, the standard-bearers of 1968 have taken over the higher ground, roosted in the educational, media and political establishments like a flock of grackles – shrieking to high heaven and splattering the surface underneath with a Jackson-Pollocking layer of artistic but bad-smelling dung. Well, really – what could be more fun to the naturally rebellious youth than to tell the baby-boom cohort of elders (who basically trashed every American institution as they moved through it, save perhaps the military, technology, the culinary arts – and possibly retail) to take a hike, I’m going to live like my grandparents, or maybe my great-grandparents? Plant a garden, go off the grid and make your own clothes, and preserved food? I know that Martha Stewart was responsible for a lot of renewed popularity with regard to home-making, but she always seemed to me to be someone striving for Right-Coast upper-class respectability. What does one make of web and cable cooking-show personalities like Ree Drummond, the accidental country girl who wound up on a ranch in Oklahoma, living a comparatively laid-back life, cooking and gardening, and home-schooling four children?

Could this rebelling by going back to basics account for the retro appeal of Mitt Romney? Staid, conventional, traditional 1950s-Leave It To Beaver-style marriage, large and happy family, picket-fence suburban ideal home – everything that the brigades of 1968 revolted against, and subsequently established a new normal of something completely different from it – and now a new generation is rebelling against that? Amusing to contemplate, anyway.

I just hope the fashion for girdles and wearing high-heels and stockings to vacuum the floor is one thing that never revives. That stuff is uncomfortable.

04. October 2012 · Comments Off on Thoughts On the Debate · Categories: Ain't That America?, Fun and Games, Media Matters Not, Politics, Rant, sarcasm, Tea Time · Tags: , ,

Well, that was interesting – Blondie and I watched about the first fifty minutes or so together, and then she watched to the very end, as I had already pretty much given up hope of the Obaminator melting down entirely … the consummation that I have been devoutly wishing for since his administration began. Well, he was looking a bit melty and sweaty, and what was with all the constant blinking? Reassuring that he can speak sort of coherently without the crutch of a teleprompter, so he had that going for him, but I have to say that he did not seem confident at all; good at coming out with the predigested and memorized talking points, but no sense at all that he really, really, knew what he was talking about.
Romney, on the other hand, was there – on point, knowledgeable and authoritative. I know, I know – Blondie and I have both had the experience of being briefed in a military setting by someone who knows the subject inside and out, and one who is just reciting the required materiel. We both of us can tell the difference. I was reassured by how good Romney was; as I said, neither of us had him as first choice for the GOP, but we are now thinking that he was a good pick after all.

Of course, the major media melt-down is grimly amusing to behold … in the same way that a massive, spectacular wreck on the interstate is. Reporters and reporterettes, you got sold – and you believed in the Obaminator being the superior being and sang his praises in four-part barber-shop harmony … and framed Romney as a bumbling and doltish caricature. Have fun, sucking up what little remains of the respect for your profession, trickling in little steaming streams out of the wreck. Trying to belatedly redeem yourselves in the eyes of conservatives, libertarians and Tea Partiers will be another interesting spectacle over the next few weeks. I look forward to it, and am making popcorn.

So – next challenge; an open town-hall meeting, and a possibly much more partisan moderator. This should be interesting, especially if Romney handles it all with the same aplomb, Obama sweats bullets, and the mainstream media goes into overtime-spin, explaining just one more time how Obama really, really came out the winner. Fun times … maybe I’d better get more popcorn.

PS – from the expressions on the faces of both the Obamas after the debate, I don’t think that celebratory anniversary nookie was in the cards last night.

Darned if I’m not coming up on my ten-year mark as a blogger; my, how the time flies when you are having fun. I made my very first post in August, 2002, after the fun of being a solo blogger apparently burned off for the original founder of this blog, the semi-legendary smart-ass known as Sgt. Stryker. And then, I just got into the habit of it. Things happened – a war, for one. And after a bit, and a couple of years of producing content and of getting very, very tired of working for other people and corporate organizations (some of whom although not all were – not to put too fine a point on it – raving loonies or singularly unappreciative of my mad and various skilz) I began to think of myself as a writer (and independent contractor) who did a little office and administrative work on the side, rather than an office administrator/secretary who did a little writing on the side. Since then, I’ve brought home the bacon as an editor, writer and publisher, having written seven books, counting the first one, which was my ‘training wheels book’ and mostly of reworked blog-posts anyway. There have been bloggers who have done even better out of being early bloggers … but that’s not my point, really. I’ve done well enough to suit myself, even if I could not figure out how to do certain book-advert things with the original blog layout, or to incorporate pictures into the current one. Just one of those things.

One of those things that happened in the decade since was to become a Tea Partier – a devotee of small government, strict application of the Constitution in matters governmental, and of classical free markets … no, not crony capitalism, which is the kind that only mimics free markets, in which the establishment political elite and the top-market-economic elite are one and the same. No, it is not the same thing at all … and being an independent writer really is underlining that point quite sufficiently. As if I had not already figured much of that out, through reading the book and author blogs …

Ugh – small interruption there, a grad-student with the thankless job of hawking books from door to door on a Sunday afternoon. Nice – work hours for the freelance are … non-standard. Whereas I couldn’t afford any of his books, even if I was interested in them, it seems that he is an exchange student from Brazil, come to improve his English and Spanish, and has written a text-book. And needs an editor. Of course I gave him my card – but how comic would that be, getting a paid editing job from doing door to door cold-calling? One of my on-line author friends, Janet Elaine Smith, apparently does this all the time: she pitches her books to sales-persons who call her or ring her doorbell, deftly turning around all of their lines. Nine out of ten, she sells more to them, than they do to her…

Anyway – back to life as it is being lived in this campaign summer. It looks like Mittens is the nominee, and it looks like it is actually not going too bad for him. He wasn’t really my first, or even my second choice, politically … although it might be that he can really electrify the campaign by picking a dazzling VP. I wouldn’t presume to say who … except that observe that a running mate of the dark-brown year-round-tan color would certainly defang some of the objections to a pure-white-cleaner-than-next-to-godliness-white candidate. Who has political and extensive managerial business experience far, far beyond the ken of the current incumbent … who seems to be pretty down with that Chicago-Machine-Political-Dirty-Dealing-Your-Opponent-Down –Before-He/She/They-Can-Do-It-To-You sort of thing. Your mileage may vary, though.

Really, I ought to go back and order the second season of Rome, soon. I’ll bet that will make a lot of stuff perfectly clear. Note – this week, we did have a precinct-walker doing my neighborhood for a Republican candidate. Or so he said- and I hope it’s true. He was also doing a quick Tea-Party-ish poll, and tallying up the answers on an I-pad. So all props to the organization which send him forth on this mission in being able to work with cutting-edge 21st century technology. I seriously hope that he was in earnest about who and what he said that he was – otherwise… It seriously wierds me out that I must reconsider this kind of honesty in answering his questions, in this year of 2012. Yeah, hope and change. We hope that we have some change left at the end of all this.