Well, I tried, if not extraordinarily hard, to attend the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear at the National Mall on Saturday. My brother and sister-in-law were amused enough by the prospect to fly over from Silicon Valley, so it was an opportunity for a brief family reunion. I wasn't too enthusiastic about the message of the rally, which was predicated on the notion that leftists such as myself were equally culpable with the right for the problems we face, while centrists such as Jon "Stewart" and Stephen Colbert (when not in persona) were comparitively noble creatures of measured judgement and sweet reason. You know, in the manner of such fine centrist administrators as Obama, Clinton, Carter, Ford, Nixon...
(It has occurred to me that Obama has spent his entire political life in areas where the Democratic Party is the inarguably dominant/business as usual/corruption of power/default Establishment party--the not particularly progressive Democratic Party machines, despite occasional and usually smothered outbursts of reform, of Hawaii, Boston/Cambridge, and Chicagoland. This might help to explain a number of his failings, some of which have been much chewed over today, including by he himself.)
And the election has followed, with a very mixed bag of results...notable how many of the Tea Partisans have failed to be elected, particularly when they were making the claim of being the populist expressions in their districts as opposed to just Republicans with vociferous cheering sections (and money from such Republican PACs as the "Tea Party Express")...the most "outsidery/mavericky" of the Teabaggers to be elected, at least to get much national attention, Rand Paul, not only had his father's organization to support him but had a Democratic opponent who attempted to attack him from the right--I tend to think of this as Doing a Joe Leiberman). The Tea Partisans are going to be "tamed," as much as they aren't already. The Democrats got yet another lesson as to why it's necessary for them to not simply be, as they have been for most of the last forty years, the less crazy echo of the Republicans. Harry Reid's smarmy statement of how he and his colleagues need to Work Together, Bold Ignoring the Far Left and Far Right, to continue offering the kind of clumsy governance they've offered so far is just a small example of the kind of irritation we get to suffer...as we continue to suffer more from their actions and inactions, as well as those of their fellow corporatists, ranging with few exceptions from the political dead center to the extreme right.
At least on Saturday I didn't quite miss the Philadelphia debut of the traveling version of Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me..., the NPR comedy news-quiz series...I heard it live via WYPR-FM in Baltimore and WAMU-FM in DC, as opposed to the afternoon delay broadcast in Philly by WHYY, while trying to make my way through the ridiculously slow southbound traffic on I-95 (also thus saving the price of a ticket to the Academy of Music, wherein the audience was subjected in person to Bobby McFerrin's aggressive self-congratulation). So slow that I heard the coverage of the rally on DC's FM broadcast signal of C-SPAN Radio for the first hour and a half of its run, excepting the musical introductory set by the Roots (the Philadelphia-based rap/funk band currently working as the house orchestra for NBC's Late Night with a Boring Guy with Good Taste in Music), some of it with John "Legend", with whom they've recently released an album (the Roots were to support the other musical actions throughout the show). Eric and Paula were less fortunate in their attempts to see and hear what was going on...after bad jam ups at the DC-area commuter rail Metro, they were able to arrive about 45 minutes late, and far enough back that the available JumboTrons and loudspeakers could only infrequently be clearly perceived. By the time I made it to a Metro station with iffy parking, I decided to simply go to my parents' home and watch the coverage on Comedy Central and C-SPAN (a pretty rare, if not unique, simulcast).
The rally went on without the small stack of fliers I had in support of my sign proclaiming God Hates Mopes, one of a number of parodies of that fine Christian band of jackasses who enjoy disrupting the funeral services of various people they have no rational reason to disrupt (among those seen at the rally, God Hates Figs and God Hates Snuggies).
The text of my flier (composed in few minutes the night before, and seeming just like it):
God Hates Mopes!
Don’t support the lifestyle choice that depressives and sad-sacks choose to choose for their lifestyles!
Sad people wilt our crops!
Their tears deplete our precious bodily fluids, and lead to unnecessary shortages of the sports drinks WE ALL NEED to keep those fluids topped off!
Their medicines and headshrinking deplete our pocketbooks and wallets, if we’re men who don’t carry purses…the way mopey men sometimes do!
Look at them just moping over there! God Hates Mopes!
The Society to Let Everyone Know That God Hates Mopes Approves of This Message.