Monday, October 06, 2008

yes, THAT, dammit.

On who "Joe Sixpack" really is.

See, JSP isn't referring to our rock hard abs. JSP literally means "the blue collar guy who picks up a six pack of cheap beer every night after work and goes home to watch Nascar (and probably beat his wife/kids and light a cross on the black neighbor's lawn but we won't say anything about that wink wink nudge nudge)." That is the message that they are trying to get across to America.

when in fact, Joe Sixpack IS the black neighbor, and he's having a Nascar watching party with his boyfriend and his sister and her girlfriend, and yeah, sure, they're drinking beer, only Joe's not having too much because he has to get up early to finish writing his sermon. Then they all play Scrabble and talk about trends in science fiction and Japanese horror movies for a while before putting the kids to bed. Guess how they all vote? Go on, guess.

And this bit, I really liked this:

I wish I were only talking to one camp. But I'm talking to my own, too. We "liberal elitists." Because we say the same kind of things when talking about "the average American."

...And that's kind of dangerous, and it's also kind of not true. Like I said, there are those people out there, and we know what camp they are in. But how many of us assumed "the average American" would say that Palin won the debate, because she didn't fall down and start speaking in tongues? And what are the polls saying? And hasn't our side also been moaning about how "Joe Six-Pack" wouldn't vote for a black man? Assuming "the average American" is that special demographic? Do we really think he did so well in the primaries because there's such a vast quantity of "intellectual elites" out there to compensate for all of the average people who'd naturally vote right wing? Come on, people...

(read the rest. Srsly, do.)

This. This. This is the problem I've been having with the lovely nihilism punctuated with spasms of GO TEAM!! all over way too many of the hardcore politicos, from mainstream horserace watching a la Kos down to the more esoteric branches of feminism and beyond.

Because, you know something: it's all too easy for a "the rabble is so easily swayed by this cheap crap, if only they were all as enlightened as me/us" to tip over into the sort of kitschy reactionary bullshit we're looking at right now. (Gerard Van der Leun, here's looking at you). All it takes is a jolt of fear in the right place and we're off to the bunker.

The problem isn't "intellectual elitism." The problem is people on either side of the aisle who're so busy congratulating our clever selves for not letting anyone put anything over on -us- that we forgot what we stood for in the damn first place.

I think, last I checked, it supposedly had something to do with "other people." Democracy, don't you know. The antithesis of "elitism."

You know, Joe and Jane Sixpack. All those zillions of -people- out there. Salt of the earth for sure, maybe, possibly; just don't trust them to find their own ass with a map and a flashlight, the dumbasses

Unlike,, who totally know what we're doing.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I forget the original source for this quote, but:

"DEMOCRACY:- The political theory that the people know what they want, and deserve to get it - good and hard!"

Seriously, though, I agree with you that at the bottom line, the minute you start assuming that others are "unenlightened", you might as well start campaigning for the implementation of Plato's Republic as a constitution, and elevating oneself to the status of "philosopher-king". While in theory it's a nice idea, in practice that sort of scheme hasn't worked out so well - regardless of the original good intentions of the "p-k"s involved. As Winston Churchill famously said, "Democracy is the worst form of government - except for all the others!"