Saturday, August 16, 2008

Get Who’s Calling Obama “Exotic” By Anthony McCarthy

You aren’t surprised. The Republican Party is going for the racist vote, as they always do. The effort of their soundboard, the media, to make Obama’s vacation trip to Hawaii an “exotic” location is clearly part of a campaign to whip up white racists. Visiting his infirm grandmother in the one of the 50 great states she lives apparently ranks lower in strangeness levels than The Bush Crime Family buying a massive estate in Paraguay*. Visiting an old grandmother is more sinister than buying a large chunk of a country famous as a haven for WWII era war criminals. Our media seem to be populated by folk too innocent of modern life to notice that Crawford del Sud would make a good refuge from indictments crimes against humanity or to shelter from those who might, someday, try to recover the billions plundered from the taxpayers of the United States.

Hearing the “exotic” line recited by Cokie Roberts last Mondy has to rank up there with Sally Quinn on marital propriety. There is no one more exotic than Cokie Roberts, whose family left New Orleans, a perfectly normal city, to morph into the most alien life form, the DC insider. Her brother’s a DC lobbyist, her husband, another DC media pod person. The talking heads are service droid mannequins more believable as Sci-fi Channel filler than as sources of information about life in the United States.

One of the more important aspects of this campaign of racism is whether or not white people, especially those in “the heartland”, will be played for chumps as the Republican racial strategy wishes them to be. You would think that people who live in the mid-west would be tired of that role, especially as many of them are fully as progressive and sophisticated as anyone who works on either coast. I’ve known many people from states that start with an I who are more enlightened than any member of insider Washington and New York City. I’d be hard pressed to think of a mid-westerner I’ve known who isn’t more aware of real life than anyone who gets asked to yack on the cabloids. People in the mid-west aren’t consigned by fate to assume roles in perpetual I-Hop commercials. They should punch anyone who tries to force them into that square in the mush and in the only way they will stop it, by overturning the corporate establishment that creates these roles for them.

Obama’s campaign must point out how insulting and condescending those Republican campaigns are to the people who live in the fabled “heartland”. I’ll bet there are millions of white mid-westerners who are just waiting for evidence that they are not eternally consigned to the role constructed for them by snobs in the media and publishing elites over the past century*.

The announcement by the Census Bureau that the United States will be white minority about the middle of the century makes me wonder if it isn’t part of the effort by the Bush Regime to scare white people. But that’s one of the problems with this kind of thing, once you get used to seeing it used, you get suspicious of everything. Doesn’t mean your suspicions are wrong, unfortunately.

* The first elected government in Paraguay in about sixty years is in serious trouble with next to no notice given by those obsessing about Georgia’s defacto partition. The timing in Paraguay seems a bit too convenient to me. We will know after the election if the Bush compound there was conceived as a continuation of that dark history. Call me suspicious if you want to. More about the situation in Georgia later in the week.

** The real history of the “heartlands” reveals a much more sophisticated and complex reality that is never told in the corporate media. Mid-western progressives, progressive populists and radicals have a rich history to reference and promote. I’d be proud if New England had a record to match it.