RANGER AGAINST WAR: Woolgathering <

Sunday, April 20, 2008


The world is a beautiful place to be born into
if you don't mind some people dying all the time
or maybe only starving some of the time
which isn't half so bad if it isn't you.
--Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Lester: You don't think it's kinda weird & fascist?
Carolyn: Possibly, but you don't want to be unemployed.
Lester: Oh well, all right, let's all sell our souls
and work for Satan because it's more convenient that way
--American Beauty (1999)

"So do not worry and say, 'What are we to eat?
or 'What are we to drink? What are we to wear?' . . .
-- Matthew 6:31

But what are we to eat? What are we to drink? Well, thank goodness such questions don't distract those running for high public office in the U.S.

John McCain released his tax returns Friday, but they "don't provide a full picture of his wealth because they don't include his wife's income."

Cindy McCain is the chairwoman of a huge Phoenix-based Anheuser-Busch beer distributorship, Hensley & Co., which her parents founded. She may be worth more than $100 million, according to some analysts' estimates ("McCain releases tax returns but leaves out rich wife's Data.")

The Clinton's have earned $108 million since leaving office, and Obama and wife pulled in a tidy $4.2 million in 2007, according to the L.A.Times. Our current President Bush enjoys being a part of a family with no worries about how to make the monthly electric bill, thanks in no mean part to the warm petroleum relations between the house of Bush and the house of Saud.

But Americans are visual creatures. George Bush with a large belt buckle gathering brush on his Crawford ranch; Hillary throwing back boilermakers; Obama assuring us he worships our lord Jesus Christ. All very necessary for constructing the pastiche which constitutes our hopes and dreams, the golem that will become our savior and advocate.

Obviously these households are just like yours and mine. Ranger is sure that they all can absorb the spiraling cost of living handily, while still managing to present themselves as just another Ossie and Harriet.

Labels: ,


Blogger BadTux said...

But let us not forget that Bill Clinton and Barak Obama come from very humble backgrounds and do know what it was like to be hungry. I may be in the top quintile of income payers today, but I still bear the scars (literally) of being poor in my youth, and I doubt Bill or Barak have forgotten them either.

John McCain... I don't know. He was a military brat, joined the military, then married money. But there were also those five horrible years when he was nearly starved and beat to death by the NV, an experience which qualifies him for a lifetime of physical and mental therapy though not President. The question is whether that experience is helpful in understanding the suffering of those who are poor in America. I doubt it. He has been an elite for all his life other than those five years, and during those five years he was actively being tortured. It may be that, in his tortured mind, lack of physical torture means that the mental torments of our permanent underclass with no hope, no future, no way out, simply fall beneath his notice. But this, of course, is speculation, and I doubt either of us can really know...

Sunday, April 20, 2008 at 7:44:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Is Obama really from a humble background?Ivey league schools and humble do not equate.
Your assessment of McCain is as accurate as we can get.

Monday, April 21, 2008 at 9:11:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger BadTux said...

Obama went to Ivy League schools the same way as Bill Clinton did -- on scholarships. To get through law school he also had to take on massive student loans, which he finally paid off only after his book took off and gave him the money to do so.

Regarding his family background, you are correct that, unlike his wife's background (which is Chicago working class), his is not a background of poverty. His grandparents were middle class in Hawaii. That said, he went to Yale Law the same way his wife did -- on scholarship. During his work as a community organizer he didn't have a trust fund or a rich sugar mommy to support him (Michelle Obama is from a working-class Chicago family), he found out first-hand what living paycheck-to-paycheck is like.

So no, I wouldn't say that Obama came from a "deprived" background. But there's nothing elite or elitist in his background, other than that he got a good enough education and is natively smart enough to get scholarships to Ivy League colleges without needing a legacy slot to do so. There were no rich relatives paying his way through college, no sugar momma bankrolling his early political career. It's actually a decidedly normal background -- or was until the Reagan "Revolution" started the job of destroying the American middle class, that is.


Monday, April 21, 2008 at 11:12:00 AM GMT-5  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home