The Big Ugly

Hard to say what’s been worse this past week—putting up with a stomach virus or watching the ongoing GOP train wreck.  In years past, the Gingrich factor would have been an instant tonic because the possibility that Newt Gingrich would pitch himself and his tainted legacy against a sitting Democratic President would be too, too delicious.

But that was then.  This is now.

Though I’m no Mitt Romney fan, the very idea of Uncle Newt in the oval office makes me shudder.  Though I’m no Barack Obama fan, Uncle Newt makes POTUS look immensely attractive.  No small feat.

So where I might have jumped with joy in the past  [oh please, let the Republicans nominate the ugliest, least electable candidate of the bunch], instead I’ve been thrown into a miserable funk.

The choices suck, the conversations continue to move to the extreme right and the American electorate flails in desperation.

If there’s any bright spot it is this: the longer Uncle Newt basks in glory, the more ugly he will reveal, namely the Republican penchant for the politics of petty grievances—the howl of the entitled patriarchy, still wounded by Paradise Lost; the claim of religious bigotry—the war on Christianity—while dismissing or denigrating any religion but their own; and the aggressive promise that if they can’t win, they’ll make damn sure no one else does.  In addition, Newt’s recent success exposes the Tea Party for what it has truly become—a group of mindless obstructionists.

Sorry, you cannot make lemonade out of this one.  Not when a voting group is willing to endorse and support a serial liar, a hypocrite without shame, a man willing to blow the dog whistle on all the old prejudices and wounds of race and gender, or conjure up the ghost of Andrew Jackson, a man Gingrich says knew how to deal with his enemies: he killed ‘em.

Native Americans, I suspect, have a different take.

Uncle Newt’s declarations might sound good in a John Wayne movie but not for the White House, not in the year 2012 when the country and the world is precariously perched on a knife edge.

But there’s more.  The Newtster has taken on capitalism itself, exposing the underbelly of Republican economics—the mythical ‘free’ market, the unchained melody that without restraint will bring a Renaissance of prosperity and goodwill to hardworking Americans.  Or so the tune goes.

Sing that to the unemployed, the homeless.  Better yet, belt the lyrics out loud and clear to the nearly 50 million Americans now collecting food stamps, Uncle Newt’s favorite whipping boy.  Or sing that discordant lullaby to the children [over 20%] now designated food insecure.  Because unfettered capitalism has been the GOP’s clarion call for the last 40 years.  Think about ‘trickle down’ economics, stagnating wages, the unfunded wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the call for ever-lower taxes because the ‘job creators’ need that extra revenue to make things right.  Now recall the financial meltdown of 2008, where Wall St. took the unregulated ball and ran right off the cliff.  Screaming ‘liberty’ on the way down doesn’t quite cut it for most of us.

This is the plus side of a Newt Gingrich, who with a magician’s flourish has pulled back the curtain on the Big Ugly.  The lie is massive and cruel.  The lie has inflicted pain and suffering on millions, both here and abroad.

The Hopemeister

The counter to all this is convincing the public that Barack Obama is a socialist/Marxist in hiding.  President Obama is many things but a socialist and/or Marxist he is not.  Barack Obama is a brand, a man marketed to the American public as a national savior.  He was and is not.  He’s simply a marker for the status quo.

And that’s where my ongoing funk comes in.  On one side, we have Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and Ron Paul all extolling the Big Lie as the disease that will cure us.  And on the other side we have President Obama pretending he’s Teddy Roosevelt reborn, ready to slay the Dragons of Monopoly.  Only his words do not match his actions.  They never did.

And then there’s us, the American electorate, the Consumer Nation brought low by dwindling expectations, the super-power made suddenly and irrefutably mortal.  Will the election of 2012 rouse us from the trance that brought us to this moment?  Will we see the Big Ugly for what it is rather than what we dreamt it to be?

Or will we tumble back into a dark and endless sleep?

Not to be overly depressing, there are glimmers of light on the horizon.  Citizens are standing up, questioning the lack of justice in the system, the ongoing extraction of wealth by the top 1%.  Despite the lack of coverage, the Occupy Wall St. movement still survives in small towns and cities across the country.  Grassroot efforts are pushing ahead to remove the influence of money in government—Superpacs writ large.  Several Constitutional amendments are gaining signatures and support to upend the Supreme Court’s ‘corporations are people’ decision and more and more voices are rising up in books and magazines, on the blogs and in tweets to push back the Robber Baron mentality of our corporate, government and financial institutions.

Will it be enough?  I don’t know.  The Big Ugly has a hell of a head start.  But if Aesop is any guide, the Hare who dismisses the Tortoise should be well advised: We’re coming.  Slow and steady, We the People, are coming nonetheless.

25 Comments on “The Big Ugly”

  1. The Rock says:

    Truer words could not have been spoken. If Newt was the GOP nominee, Obumbles wouldn’t even have to include Hillary in the ticket to get the base energized. Seeing these things makes me increase the number of international employment applications that I have been recently putting out. The choice between him and Bumbles is just heartbreaking. So I have to find something funny. And luckily (thanks to John Smart), I did…

    Hillary 2012

    • peggysue22 says:

      Thanks for that, Rock. Btw, I caught the vid over at John’s site. I was somewhat amused that Hillbuzz or Hot Air thought this was supportive of Uncle Newt. I think it’s making a joke of the entire GOP field, Newt being the biggest [but perhaps more dangerous] joke of all. Beyond Santorum, of course.

      Made me laugh, particularly the hat tip to Michelangelo. Too funny!!

  2. foxyladi14 says:

    Pass the popcorn! 😆

  3. northwestrain says:

    That’s a great photo-shopped image of Newtie —

    Newtie has always seemed really old — you know that old mean guy in the neighborhood who hates kids and dogs and women.

    • peggysue22 says:

      I was looking for something that would symbolize the Big Ugly, not necessarily Uncle Newt himself. But when I found that image, I was in heaven :0). It’s a definite winner and ought to go viral.

      Pictures say a thousand words, as they say.

  4. Pat Johnson says:

    Excellent and bravo, peggysue!

    The very thought of Newt Gingrich anywhere near Pennsylvania Avenue is appalling but more unsettling are those finding an excuse to support him.

    I keep asking: is this the best we can do in a nation as large and diverse as this? Apparently so since this lizard is now leading in the state of Florida where a large majority of seniors call home and this guy wants to chip away at their benefits.

    If the day comes and this guy is swept into the WH, we will look no different as a nation than having our own Chavez or Akmadinnerjacket as a leader. This is how bad he is.

    • peggysue22 says:

      Thank you, ma’am. It seems as if the Lizard People have taken over the political class. But Uncle Newt takes the prize for reptilian behavior. And an actual Newt nomination? The GOP would literally blow themselves up. They seem to be trying very hard to do just that.

      It will be interesting to see how far this plays out and if, as BB indicated in her post, a brokered convention becomes a reality. That would be something! It’s what the Dems should have had in 2008.

  5. bostonboomer says:

    Sadly, it wasn’t just the Tea Party people who voted for Newt. He won in nearly every single category, as you can see spelled out in my morning post. Romney isn’t preferable to Newt. He’s almost worse because some Dems insist on believeing he’s somehow “moderate” or “reasonable.”

    As long as the GOP establishment keeps trying to push Mitt down the throats of their voters, things are going to stay ugly and Obama will get reelected even though he doesn’t deserve it.

    I must admit, I’m enjoying the show. There’s not much point in getting depressed about it, since there’s nothing I can do to stop it. Chaos is better than fascist dictatorship. That’s where we’re headed though–with Obama or Romney.

    Now if Santorum started to surge, THEN I’d be truly worried. I’m already worried enough that he’ll be VP on the ticket.

    • bostonboomer says:

      They’re not voting for Newt, per se; they’re voting AGAINST Romney.

    • peggysue22 says:

      You’re right, BB. It’s not just the Tea Party. But the the SC contingent certainly showed its colors and it is decidedly not attractive. I found that Ole Time Bigotry on display very depressing. Feeling crummy didn’t help.

      And yes, Santorum is a step too far. His evangelical creds didn’t help him in SC. Thank goodness.

      • bostonboomer says:

        I agree, it is a shame that there are so many people like that. I’m just trying not to be depressed, since that will only prevent me from doing anything useful in my own life.

  6. Living in Newt’s home state, there is lots of support for Newt around my redneck of the woods…

    • Allie says:

      I live in the Atlanta suburbs myself. My mother is a devoted Fox News junkie and she loves her some Newt. Isn’t brainwashing special? This is the woman who told all of us to “just wait” and we’d see how great GWBush was…

      As closely as I can gather – her rationale has more to do with his blunt style. She can overlook his adultery although that is at the top of her list of worst sins ever (from her own personal experience). Mom’s retirement is secure thanks to her AT&T pension and she can’t relate to the “entitlement” program war. And she hates brown people thanks to her upbringing and Fox.

      Anyway his debate performances and aggressive style equate to “truth to power” in her world.

      • Allie says:

        P.S. In my mother’s defense – she did not bring us u to be bigots and we never heard a bigoted word out of her growing up. It’s only gotten bad lately. All four of her daughters are very left-leaning. My brother love shim some Ron Paul, unfortunately.

        • dakinikat says:

          In polite southern society, I was raised to “keep to my own kind”. That inference went to Catholics (especially Italians) and Jewish people too. If they couldn’t get in the country club, they weren’t your “own kind”. It was sort’ve sold as “not bigotry”, it was more like every one just should keep to their own kind and every one likes it that way. It was sold as every one prefers it that way. You weren’t taught to hate particularly, just to stay away. It just confused me more than anything. But then, a lot of things confused me because when the rationale was always that’s just the way things are. It was quite like that Huxley mantra about alphas, betas, etc.

      • ralphb says:

        In your mother’s defense, I really don’t see that as too unusual. It’s almost like having Obama in the WH has crossed some imaginary Rubicon with a lot of Republicans. Taking into account that Fox News bias, it’s near predictable.

        You see the same with some former Democrats. When anything bad happens, it’s all his fault but, when he does something reasonably good, he can get no credit for it at all. The guy was way oversold in 2008 but he’s not the devil. Just a normal pragmatic politician who makes what deals he can. In this climate, I don’t see how anyone could successfully push forward a liberal agenda, no matter what they wanted to do.

      • ralphb says:

        Dak, Maybe the difference is I was raised in impolite southern society (read poor), but I was simply taught to not think too highly of myself or look unkindly on others. I gotta admit that it was certainly exceptional, among my peer group, but I’ve always been grateful for it.

  7. Pat Johnson says:

    If the GOP wants to elect Nasty Newt and his wife Callista Parker Bowles to the presidency we may as well throw in the towel now.

    Most of these First Ladies prefer to be treated as if they were the owners of Downton Abbey rather than the second half of a marital team.

    And from the looks of Lady Helmet Head, she is well on her way to doing just that.

  8. bostonboomer says:

    Here’s an example of the GOP attitudes I’m talking about. Meanwhile, if Romney does get elected over Obama, he’ll be much much worse. Obama has to listen to Wall Street. Romney IS Wall Street. He’ll do exactly what they want.

    • Pat Johnson says:

      Chris Christie reminds me of the kind of kid in high school who “tripped” you as you passed, stole food off your tray, and made obscene noises when girls walked by.

      A truly “despicable” man who gets his jollies “talking down” to people and calls that a dialogue.

      Mitt and Newt are sorely lacking but Chris is odious.

  9. Silent Kate says:

    Very well stated! Kudos!