Been having a back-and-forth with an old friend who's drunk the Tea lately. The usual stuff. Socialism, Sharia, destroying America, yadda yadda.
I've shot back a few. "Please cite one law in the United States based on Koranic principles." "If the top 10% have received 100% of the wealth gains of the Obama recovery, he's a pretty lousy socialist." Yadda yadda.
Boring, and a waste of time, but I'll still volley when I have a moment. Something to do. Don't much care, to be honest.
But one aspect of his yammerings does strike a nerve: the assumption that I somehow don't understand politics, government, policy, political theory, etc. That if I'd just click on this post or watch this youtube I'd finally GET IT and be screaming for impeachment or armed revolution or tea (probably with an O'Reilly "motherfucking" thrown in to speed my order). That I've spent my whole life watching sitcoms and titty videos and just need to be enlightened that there's a thing called politics.
I find this personally insulting. I grew a good bit of my up in Washington. The Post, in its finest days, was my morning rag. Watergate taught this high-schooler that there were such people as White House Counsels and aides to Senate committee chairs and Deputy Attorneys General, that they had names and responsibilities and power to abuse.
I have worked for the federal government, have had to proofread foreign policy analyses and Hill testimony and submissions to the Federal Register. Hell, I've had to lift the Federal Register, in the days when it was made of paper and picked up at the loading dock of the Government Printing Office. I know the names of my senators and reps. And their constituent service aides. Likely enough, yours, too.
On the other side, I've marched, mailed, phoned, shouted, vandalized, monkeywrenched and ratfucked against administrations and their policies. I've worked on campaigns. I've written policy memos for candidates. I've produced ads and written jokes for rubber chicken fundraisers.
I've spent my years dropped out, too cool to vote or care, then jumped back in when villains too appalling to be borne stole and cheated their way to power.
While I put no faith in princes, I have completed seminary and believe myself qualified to speak to the issues regarding our secular church.
And I find myself a little hacked off when some newly-converted Jesus-Freak-of-politics, armed with three catch phrases learned from a radio host or a keyboard kommando freed from the fetters of fact-checking tells me I really need to open my eyes and learn the truth.
Sorry, old friend. I'm not interested in your NewsMax article. Let me know when they link one of my diaries again.