That very pleasant chore accomplished, on with the griping!
One of the inside jokes of my family is the expression "Communist as Hell!", which my nephew has shortened to "Communist!", and summed up, or distilled down, parsing down the whole variety of levels of meanings, it basically means "Bullshit!", as in dishonest bullshit.
And more specifically dishonest bullshit that looks good on paper, looks good theoretically (thus the Commie reference), but in a dialectically opposite Capitalist way, on the way to reifying it, corners are cut, quality is abandoned, and you end up with some cobbled together Soviet abortion that (again, weird) only unsupervised private enterprise could create. (Because as ugly and cobbled together as the Soviet thing is, it's still pretty damn sturdy and reliable, like an AK-47, and not like the usual shoddy piece of shit that only a cost-cutting bloated plutocratic capitalist running-dog would sell in a place like Walmart). So, it's a paradoxical phrase, which is why its an inside joke.
In my family, given that we are all, in one form or another, scientists, engineers, hard-nose materialist types who would rather be confronted with the unvarnished truth, warts and all, instead of convenient fictions, we like to cut through the bullshit. As such, we, all of us, have, among other things, an immense distaste for lawyers on TV.
They ain't honest.
To quote Joe Pesci's character in "My Cousin Vinnie", when speaking of the D.A. building his case, like building a house from bricks, the bricks... "When you look at the bricks from the right angle, they're as thin as this playing card. His whole case is an illusion, a magic trick".
Legal arguments, generally, ain't honest. They ain't honest because you don't get all the facts. Just the facts they want you to know about. That's called cherry-picking. I see it every damn day, and it is, yes indeed, Communist As Hell!
This whole thing started up with my morning coffee, flipping through the channels, and I happen to catch John Stossel on Fox News*. Actually, it's not even about him. It's really any entertainer out there (and every political commentator of every stripe, my dears, is an entertainer, from people with giant quivering manboobs, like Michael Moore or Rush Limbaugh, to slightly more fit physical types with mustaches, like John Stossel or Janeane Garofolo, or whomever) that is Communist as Hell, because they are trying to get their point across in the shortest - and therefore most dishonest - sound bite that they can.
So Stossel is yapping away about how the government can't do shit right. Let's ignore the fact that I would not even be hearing his broadcast if it were not for the liberal largesse of the US government. He uses the example of how the East German government couldn't build a car, and as a result, we can't trust our government to do anything.
What the fuck? Stossel, do you really think I'm that fucking stupid without my coffee in the morning?
Stossel, would you trust private enterprise to successfully complete the Manhattan Project? To put a man on the moon? To build a national interstate system? To build an Internet? Aside from the fact that your average business hack lacks the vision to see any money coming out of these projects, and don't have nearly enough funds to do it, he's just far too wimpy to accept the risk!
I mean, the US government is Communist as Hell - but, for the most part, in a good way. And in a very selective way.
The telegraph (and by extension our entire communication infrastructure)? Funded by Congress. (Look it up!)
The research and development monies that went into the invention of the transistor? Computer chips? The personal computer? No, they weren't cobbled together in someone garage. The components were. But the components would not exist unless they had been funded by Congress.
The Internet? Ever hear of DARPA? You wouldn't be reading me without their (your) monies.
Lasers? Radio? TV? Flat screen TV? Want to guess?
In fact, one of the most spectacularly successful programs for technological innovation has been provided to you, with your taxpayer dollars, by the US government.
We The People (through the instrument of the federal government) have given (free) most of the land west of the Mississippi to corporations. (Look up the Railroad Acts, starting with Comrade Commissar Lincoln). We killed off or corralled all the Indians, to make it safe to settle. We build dams to water the wasteland, and then let farmers take it Free of Charge. We electrified the countryside (for Free, Fucking FREE!). And (okay this is gruesome weird) We built a Bomb that kept probably 2 million men from dying on the beaches of Japan. We embarked on a period of exploration that turned blurry spots of light into vast new worlds (NASA). And when you consider that, since 2004, Hollywood's annual budget for making movies surpassed that of NASA's, should you be just a little pissed off? I mean, sure, NASA crashes a 200 million dollar satellite into Mars, but no one pitches a bitch about Waterworld?
We the People have done a lot of Commie shit, and a lot of it has not been Communist as Hell!
Hey Stossel? Shut the fuck up you Commie bastard!
* To be fair, Stossel was complaining about the current Senate version of the healthcare reform bill. I agree with him that it is just a wet, slimy turd slick of a bill. But we disagree as to why it sucks, and I still was not happy that he still had to make a dishonest argument about why he thought it sucked!