Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Hillary's Video - The View From the GOP's "Dirty Tricks" Bunker

The Billionaires Counter Attack [image POLITICUSUSA]
Putting "Flesh on the Bones"
It's time to quit simply imagining.

Any American old enough to handle his own shoe laces has already heard plenty about Citizens United and the billions of US dollars currently flowing into political coffers as a consequence. It's come to the point where "news" of, for example, the Koch Brothers' $889 Bn "war chest" no longer elicits anything even resembling a shocked outrage from citizens still trying to pay next month's rent and eat at the same time.

Slowly -- very slowly -- it is finally emerging as "common knowledge" that the billionaires are firmly in control of US elections and, as a result, of the US government. 

This "common knowledge" idea means that even in the least "savvy" political observer there is now at least a seminal perception -- still one not influenced by too many facts -- of the actual situation. In such a cloudy narrative cash money starts as a tiny, inconsequential part of one of these dynastic fortunes and mysteriously winds its path to an election night victory rally.

Perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of the remaining misperception arises from the comparison normal voters make when they compare themselves and their financial situations to the corresponding situations enjoyed by this handful of overly well fed US plutocrats. As these "more or less average income" Americans attempt to scale the magnitude of these fortunes, they too often end up comparing such wealth to that of acquaintances of theirs who are simply "doing better" than they are.

The difference is absolutely not one of simply "doing better." Such comparative "parameters" are so disparate as to have essentially nothing to do with each other, and this "disconnect" sabotages the possibility for any serious comprehension of the degree of illicit political influence made not only possible, but chillingly convenient from a position of such wealth.

For example it's estimated that the Kochs wealth is around $80 Bn -- $80,000,000,000 for the mathematically challenged visitor. A bit of the "latest news" reports that 14 of the wealthiest "hard working" Americans have increased their personal wealth by $127 Bn -- $127,000,000,000 in the last twenty four months. [Read more here - COMMONDREAMS]

These billionaires sit and calmly strategize the details of their immensely profitable and inevitably lucrative plans for "absorbing" everyone else's money [One can, if desired, add a little something about sipping mint juleps during the discussion.]. They make "decisions" about "moving" millions of dollars from their "money bins" into the hands of their "hired guns" who will, in turn, place these dollars in suitable spots at just the right moment to control the next Congressional vote -- or the next election. Traditionally, these "hired guns" have been lobbyists, but with the successful 2010 "colonization" of the Congress, the trend is more and more to utilize actual public servants for this work. [Here is a link to a video of now House Speaker, John Boehner, admitting that he handed out checks on the House floor prior to a tobacco bill's vote. CROOKSANDLIARS]

Here, we arrive at the "fleshing out" part of the post. Although MeanMesa has no "supernatural periscope" through which these dark deeds of anti-democracy might be observed, it is still necessary to do what can be done to somehow peer through the black, frigid depths into the back rooms in a way which can make the players and the process more, well, real.

We need not speculate that this is really happening. It is. Our problem is that the billionaires' carefully devised payola scheme is as opaque as the obsidian dagger the Aztecs used to carve the hearts from the chests of their screaming sacrifices.

Parting the Veil
With a Little MeanMesa Fiction
The mere fact that we can't see the real thing
doesn't mean that we can't still have some fun with it.

When Mrs. Clinton "fired the first shot" with the announcement of her candidacy for President, the dark, grudging right wing think tankers were clearly caught off guard. A good number of their candidates had already strutted out in front of "audiences" to spout their announcements, but she had, instead, gone public with a -- to them -- terrifyingly low key, comfortably folksy, social media style video.

If an actual "shot" had actually been fired, it would have been over the bow of the tediously lumbering adherence to "everything 1950" as the officially adopted political template of the right wing and the billionaires. While the clown car's ideological denizens were blathering out their predictable litany of meaningless, detail free, road weary talking points to slumbering crowds of dull yet obediently dutiful tea partiers, the Clinton campaign was effortlessly conducting the modern equivalent of a "fire side chat" with millions of eager supporters already "chomping at the bit" to be knocking on doors and canvassing their neighbors in her behalf.

Sigourney Weaver - ALIENS [image]
It would be a mistake to presume that this 2 minute video announcement landed in the reactionary back rooms of the think tank bunkers gracefully. The entire theme of Clinton's message was undoubtedly so alien to this crowd that even an appearance by Sigourney Weaver herself would have hardly been noticed had she -- along with one of the alien creatures -- added a cameo walk through to Hillary's script.

Having set the scene, let's indulge ourselves in a short novella depicting what we might have seen that day unfolding in the GOP "dirty tricks" bunker had we been there. [The Clinton video is not a shabby piece of work. If you would like to refresh your recollection of it, here is a link NYTIMES-2m15s]

Ryan's New Job

[MeanMesa strongly suggests that visitors read the quoted material highlighted in the story aloud. Any effort made now to familiarize ourselves with the understandably awkward idiosyncrasies of "Confederate speech" will be rewarded in the future as we attempt to comprehend the Republican "debates."]

Ryan had accrued a notable scholastic record by the time he graduated with his degree in political science last year. Not being the least bit naive about the paucity of career opportunities he would find as he searched for a position somewhere, Ryan had maintained his youthful optimism even longer than he had hoped. Yet, employment choices for this new graduate had turned out to be even more depressing than he had anticipated.

His dreams of boldly participating in some promising candidate's exciting election campaign had gradually evaporated, leaving him selling shoes in a local mall shop. Enough time had passed for the inevitable "first notices" to arrive for his college debt repayments. Things were beginning to look rather bleak. He dutifully spent at least an hour or two every night after work scouring the internet looking for job openings in his field, but there were few notices of anyone hiring.

His job applications and resumes seemed to be simply disappearing into an empty, foreboding void.

Then, suddenly, the dark, gloomy "job skies" opened. Although he had never heard of the Christian Legion of American Whites, the prospect of finally using his degree and education to begin getting experience for his resume was electrifying. His hands were shaking as he carefully wrote down the phone number and address.

He was to call for an interview appointment and appear in person instead of blindly dispatching another email. Nervously, he dialed his cell phone. Although it was already several hours after five, a polite voice answered, identified herself as an answering service.

Gathering up his "interview" clothes, the young man spent the remaining hours of the evening in the local laundromat. As he carefully positioned his still damp "no iron" dress shirt on a hanger, his excitement was reaching an almost unmanageable crescendo. The interview was scheduled for tomorrow afternoon! No matter what the Christian Legion of American Whites turned out to be, he was positive that working there would be much better than selling shoes.

As the appointment time approached Ryan strode in as confidently as possible for his interview. The office was located in the front part of a warehouse in a rather shabby industrial park a few blocks from his apartment. There was a string of identical doors along the front of the massive grey, windowless, concrete structure, and the entrance to "Unit L" was notable only for the small "L" on the glass door and a small, innocuous sign board bearing the word "CLAW" hanging above it.

Staring again at the small sign above the door, it took Ryan a moment to realize that "CLAW" was an acronym for Christian Legion of American Whites.

The inside of the place was a tenuous extension of the outside. The room seemed strangely crowded with all manner of unkempt rubbish and half empty card board boxes. Sitting at a folding table a few steps inside was a strikingly beautiful young woman completely occupied with chewing gum and filing her nails. A carefully machined name plate on the otherwise essentially empty table identified her as "Savannah Magnolia."

Other than the young woman, there appeared to be no one else anywhere in the office.

Ryan noticed an unusually large Confederate flag pinned crookedly in that hallway just beyond Savannah's table. Another sign bearing the word "CLAW" was positioned on the wall just to her right. After a awkwardly strained delay Savannah finally noticed Ryan's presence as she looked up from her nails.

"Yew must be th' little Yankee we hirin' for thu campaign." Savannah drawled out slowly, her gaze returning to her unfinished nail filing.

"Yes, ma'am," Ryan answered politely, "I have an appointment at 2 o'clock for an interview."

"Wahl, Reveren' Jimmi 'n Mistah Jingo ain't come back from lunch yet, so yew gonna haf to jest sit yore little sef down over theah n' wait fer 'em." Having said this, Savannah once again began to even more violently chew her gum and work on her nails.

"Is my interview going to be with one of them?" Ryan asked. "Do you know if they are planning to hire sometime soon?"

Looking up again, Savannah slowly answered. "Ah figger so. Thu Reveren' and Mistah Jingo's thu ones in charge o' evvythin' 'round heah, so they's probly thu ones alraeht." Returning to her nails, she continued. "Ah know's thet they's plannin' a strateegery meetin' this aftahnoon to figger out 'bout whut tu doo with thet bitch's 'nnouncement video. Thu Reveren' told me ta' git thu confrunce room cleaned up so's theah culd hev' thu meetin'."

Suddenly, the front door of the place opened to reveal two obviously drunk men fumbling their way into the room. Savannah smiled broadly at the them. Ryan noticed that she had quickly adopted a strange combination of matronly disapproval along with the subtle physical demeanor of a bar room tease. The woman's image was further amplified by her violently crimson lipstick. While preparing herself for work, she had clumsily placed an obviously false birth mark just below her left nostril which was now beginning to dangle precipitously.

There was something incongruous about Savannah's unknowing inclination to imitate Marie Antoinette's cosmetics.

Without acknowledging Ryan at all, the two barged down the hall beyond Savannah's table -- apparently to the office's conference room. The Reverend, speaking to his side as he passed her, commanded the receptionist, "Yew git thu staff down t' thu meetin' room. We got work to do." Even though he had passed her table by this time, he spoke again, this time facing ahead in the hall way. "Hold them calls, too, Missy."

Again alone with only Ryan remaining in the room, Savannah giggled, then spoke, "We ain't gittin' enny calls. Ah ain't even got no phone -- th'only one's back theah in the meetin' room. Now, yew'd bettah git in theah."

Puzzled, Ryan asked the receptionist, "Are there other job applicants here for the interview?"

Returning to her nail filing, Savannah answered through the obvious impediment of her continuing gum chewing, "Naw. Yew ain't no applunt. Yew're thu staff. The big boys from K Street wuz heah yesterday, 'n thay tole the Reveren' t' hire a hepper. Yew're it. Yew goin' t' be thu hepper now, boy."

Mister Jingo was waiting impatiently by the open door to admit the young staffer to the conference room. Ryan proceeded down the hall way, casting a curious glance at the sagging Confederate flag as he passed. The Reverend was already seated at the conference table. Spread across the table was an open bottle of raw bourbon, an old desk top telephone, a single dull pencil and a ragged spiral note book.

At the far end was a flat screen television clearly showing the first frame of the Hillary Clinton video announcing her candidacy. Neither of the two men seemed to have any interest in interviewing Ryan or discussing any details about the job. Neither of them even bothered to introduce themselves.

The Reverend began. "This raht heah's thu damned video thet ole' witch sprang on thu country day afor' yestidday." Glaring at Ryan, he continued, "All o' us knows thet ain't no one 'cept a handful o' brain ded Yankees 'n othah librawls whats goin' to listen t' it, but them K Street boys all got theer panties all tied up in a wad on account o' it, so's they's eskin' us to start in tearin' thu thang apart so's we kin git thu countah message off to FOX raht away."

Mister Jingo spoke next, directing his comment at Ryan. "Yew bein' a lil' Yankee 'n all, the Reveren' 'n me figgered yew were goin' to be 'xactly the one who kin figger out whut 'n hell thet bunch's tryin' t' do with sumpin' lahk this. Old Hillarious Hillary done got all them Jews on her campaign team's PR squad t' spit this heah thang out all o' a sudden t' ketch us off guard. It's purty cleah now thet they ain't got no plan fer enny kinna' decent politickin' anywhares down in them dark little Jew hearts o' thearyas."

Jingo thumbed the video remote "play" button. The Southern accents were beginning to tax Ryan's capacity to translate what was being said into a comprehensible form of English. Yet, the young man recalled the wise words of his favorite political tactics professor. It had been a warning that after graduation, he might very well find himself employed by those with a political viewpoint other than his own. "Just stay cool. Get the paycheck, and count your blessings. Be glad that you're working."

Savannah abruptly appeared to serve Ryan an extremely unappetizing styrofoam cup of luke warm instant coffee. Neither of the two men seemed to notice the rather surprising number of flies in the room.

The Reveren' annotated the video. "Now, yew'd 'spect lots of coloreds in sumthin' lahk this, but them wimmen's a problem, tew. They's all smilin' 'n kissin' each othah. We gonna' need to git thu word out thet thet rag\ht theah's goin' 'gainst thu Baubul. Thu trew patrots out theah need t' git warned 'bout thu creepin sin oozing outta' thet damned thang. Hillary's tryin' t' drag 'em all down t' her level!"

Mister Jingo broke in at this point. "Whaet wimmin folk's simpul critters -- at least thu God fearin' ones -- 'n theay's gonna' git confused if'n theay see sumthin' lahk this heah." Turning to Ryan, he added, "Thu Negroes and thu Aayrabs 'nough t' scare the livin' daylahts outta' the men folk, but we need t' git thu message fer thu ladies raht back to sin, sex, rape 'n 'bortion if'n we plan t' keep 'em in thu fold. All thet lady-stuff gits them men folk angry as hell, too."

The Reverend, now becoming even more piously agitated, jumped in again. "But them queers 'n lesbeterians got throw'd in theah jest to wrankul thu folks we workin' fer! God fearin' whaht votahs ain't goin' t' take kindlay to struttin' thet kinda' sinnin' raght out in front o' theyah noses! Thet kinda' trash jest don't cut no mustahd on K Street!" Glaring at Ryan, he continued. "Yew got thet, boy? We's needin' a message heah -- sumthin' thet kin reach all thu way to them trailer parks 'n thu 'Merican Legion halls wheah thu voters are!"

Jingo piped in immediately after a long pull on the bourbon. "THET"S whut we gittin' paid t' delivah, boy! The message!"

The Reverend followed up Jingo's emphatic order. "Yew jest git yore lil' Yankee ass busy cookin' up sum kinda' message thet's gonna' stop thet bitch in her tracks. When yew got thet done, yew just shag raht over t' this heah phone 'n call 't in t' FOX." 

Reaching into his jacket pocket, the Reverend withdraw an inch thick bundle of newly printed hundred dollar bills still bearing the bank wrapper. Licking his finger carefully, he then peeled fifteen of the bills out onto the table. pushing the money in Ryan's direction. "This raht heah's yore walkin' around money, Yankee. Theah's plenty more wheah this come from, so git on with it."

Ryan thought, "This can work." After a moment's pause, Ryan reworded his thought. "Wahl now, this raht heah kin werk." He smiled, picking up the dull pencil and the spiral notebook.

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