Thursday, December 18

This Week On Undercover: The Case Files of Jesse Jackson Junior, P.I.

• Julia: "You know, I was wondering if anyone but me was wondering about that."

Someone, let's call him or her "you", is the eight-term Representative to the U.S. House from a large Midwestern, let's say, state. Frankly, I can think of several reasons, many of them good, why your wife, husband, life partner, significant other, brother, sister, brother- or sister-in-law, paramour, gigolo, soubrette, or family dentist should not be "up for" your state's top Lotto job, nor a job in your office, nor any of your colleague's offices, not in any fashion connected with fundraising, nor the head of Something You Just Thought Up. We in no way mean this to impugn the qualifications of Sandi Jackson, Todd Palin, or Christine DeLay. What we are suggesting--okay, what we're coming out and saying--is that so long as minor corruption thrives you can't expect to fight major corruption, and so long as mass-market media is a den of liars, careerists, stenographers, flacks, hob-nobbers, and cosmetics junkies, minor corruption will be overlooked where it is not openly praised. CNN just fucking stovepipes the informant story. Never mind that the member from Illinois 2nd District is up to the short and curlies in the proverbial ringer; never mind that the goddam story seems patently false on the face of it, nor that its sources are all from the Jackson camp; CNN seems not to've considered attempted verification to be a part of the process of news spewing.

Say it again: a United States Congressman is having a discussion with his state's governor about the Congressman's wife being appointed to run a cash business operated by the state. And we're supposed to be outraged only because there's a hint of quid pro quo thrown into the mix? The whole fucking thing is quid pro quo.

• Design a Logo for the Caroline Kennedy: I'm Available! Tour. Win Backstage Passes!

I turned on CNN early this A.M.--that's two days of morning news in a row, I know; I'm worried about it myself--and not only is a gubernatorial appointment to fill a vacant Senate seat "news", based on the fact that Someone With a Famous Name has seen fit to demean herself and insult the process by openly campaigning for the thing, but CNN sees fit to create a fucking graphic that puts her picture over a 20% transparency of her sainted father, who died when she was five, and when the average American--let alone the average American viewer desired by CNN--was still about ten years short of conception, not that he evinces much knowledge of what's happened since then or anything.  Crypto-religious iconography does not noticeably improve news reporting.

• Neither does the opposite: 

"Dems embrace dynasty politics". [Caution: it's Politico, but that's the point.] For chrissakes, the story is at least as old as Alexander Hamilton, the son George Washington never had, and it's as recent as the ascension of that unqualified ape from Texas who still squats in the White House. Mary Bono. Liddy Dole. John J. Duncan. Jo Ann Emerson. Lisa Murkowski. Bill Shuster. Bob Bennett. Shelley Moore Capito. Mario Diaz-Balart. Rodney Frelinghuysen. Judd Gregg. Walter B. Jones Jr. Jon L. Kyl. Cornelius Harvey McGillicuddy IV. John L. Mica. John Sununu. All Republicans, all dynastics, all currently serving, though Liddy'll be leaving us shortly. The Kennedy thing is off-putting, but that's between the citizens of New York and their governor; I don't know enough about Delaware or Colorado to comment there, but we might at least wait until something actually happens before we announce the "trend" it represents; time will tell, and eventually the voters will, too. In the meantime, your concern, as well as its timing and its oddly monocular vision, is noted.

• Could you fuckin' yell "Stop!" or something before you use the pepper spray?

Slate's redesign substitues cluttered pull-down menus for the formerly cluttered page, leaving them room at the bottom of a standard monitor to plug Mickey Kaus and the XX Factor, which has the same effect as the Indianapolis Racist Star putting the comments of its mouth-breathing, superfluously-chromosomed readership right at the bottom of news stories, without requiring an intervening click. Gack! I'm eating here! I did not need to see that! I'd love to leave The XX Gang alone, the way I do Kaus, but I keep running into irresistible leads, and clicking on links that don't take you to the post. Today, instead of Melinda Henneberger's specious "How Blago Is Hurting Caroline", I get the specious Rachael Larrimore and a gratuitous slam of Alexandra Penney:
And normally I don't hate on people for enjoying the finer things in life. But when hundreds of thousands of people are losing their jobs or having their hours and benefits cut, and all of us are cutting back on expenses, neither can I get too worked up about someone having to give up her Hermes bags.

Penney was reportedly swindled out of her life savings by Bernie Madoff. And I, not a Republican, not much of a capitalist, and nobody's sweetheart, have little enough concern whether Ms Penney ever sleeps on high-thread-count sheets again; when she's having trouble staying out of the rain I'll sympathize. But then, I have complete sympathy for someone who's been the victim of a crime, particularly one which has been facilitated by people who are those things. And I don't have any sympathy for someone who is those things and suddenly finds common ground with the common man six weeks after saying (of you know who):
Noreen, I'll back you up a bit. If I had $150,000 to spend, I think I'd run right out to Escada. Or Prada. Or any other -ada where you could get such gorgeous garments.

For fuck's sake: either you believe the biggest piggies deserve the teats, or you don't; bad news about the economy (and your own "cutting back") either counts for nothing, or you're a liar. Ms Penney chose to pursue the sort of stuff-centric life you were drooling over just last October. Now she's suddenly less human for having done so.

• Rick Warren To Deliver Inaugural Invocation. 

I've said it before, I'll say it again: it was one of those rare elections where if you did vote you now have no right to bitch.


map106 said...

God, you have utter disdain for us mere mortals, don't you.

But it's the beauty, complexity, and rhythm of your sentences that keeps me coming back.

And, I know I'll regret this, but just for the record, literary conceit or not, inside joke or not, tongue in cheek or not, it's "WHOEVER It Is". Surely I don't need to diagram that clause for a Midwesterner.

Hattie said...

You're right. I am a miserable worm for voting. But at least I don't have those photos on my sidebar. That one with the girl. Is that her intestines hanging out?
And what does ruineato mean? (my captha)

StringonaStick said...

Re: the sidebar. I still snicker at the allergy to dust reference everytime I see it.