Al Gore was on The Daily Show last night, plugging his new book The Assault On Reason. Jon Stewart asked him why the positions that flew in the face of reason, whether they be about global warming or the war in Iraq or anything else, have been so popular. Here's what Al didn't say.
"We need to counter the shock wave of the evildoer by having individual rate cuts accelerated and by thinking about tax cuts."
As you might guess, this was said by the guy who didn't get as many votes as Al Gore in 2000. He said it in October of 2001. How does this kind of non-sequitur win the day?
It's easy. It asks people to give into sin. News flash: People like to sin.
George W. Bush says he loves him some Jesus, but his charge to the American people is: don't change what you are doing. Give into your worst impulses. Be greedy. Be lazy. You want some blind, meaningless revenge on sand niggers? We can do that for you. Mission accomplished. Heck, we won't even raise your taxes. We can put this on the credit card the Chinese were nice enough to give us. They said we were pre-approved! How cool is that?
Greed. Anger. Vanity. Sloth. Gluttony. These are the Republican family values.
Envy and lust? Those are the Democratic family values, according to the Republicans. Envy is class warfare, and we know how bad that is. (Much better to have class genocide.) Lust is that weakness that the evil people of Hollywood are always trying to exploit. Boo Hollywood!
In my view, the seven deadly sins are a weak list. Here's my top two sins and how they split up politically in the U.S.
The defining Democratic sin: cowardice.
The defining Republican sin: willful ignorance.
And with that, let's go to this week's Random 10. Tom Waits and Elvis Costello show up, no surprises there. We also have the greatest voice of the last fifty years, Roy Orbison, and the greatest entertainer of the 20th Century, Fats Waller. There is no bonus track. The last song is such a great final statement, I didn't want to have an encore mess it up. If you don't know it, go find it out on the Interweb and listen to it. It's genius.
Is it a Crime Sade
Such a Scream Tom Waits
Big Boys Elvis Costello & The Attractions
Tears Django Reinhardt
The Sick Bed of Cuchulain The Pogues
Christopher Columbus Fats Waller
Sunday Girl Blondie
In Dreams Roy Orbison
Israelites Desmond Dekker
God’s Song (That’s Why I Love Mankind) Randy Newman
This blog is still alive, just in semi-hibernation.
When I want to write something longer than a tweet about something other than math or sci-fi, here is where I'll write it.