On the campaign trail on Friday, John McCain introduced Joe the Plumber as “an American hero” and “my idol.” Oh, where do I begin?
First, what has this guy possibly done to warrant “American hero” status? Perhaps over the course of his life he has rescued a cat from a tree or coached a Little League team or bought Girl Scout cookies. He might have even done truly brave and heroic things that we don’t know about, though I doubt it; I’m sure the GOP would have dredged up that bit of information and played the soundbite over and over again, ad nauseum, perhaps with Hank Williams, Jr., singing yet another poorly rewritten version of “Family Tradition” as the background music. Joe the Plumber might just be a decent fellow, but lying about a fake company he’s going to purchase doesn’t exactly qualify him for a Congressional Medal of Honor. (Oh, how many tangents could I go on here? The who-ever-thought-putting-Hank-the-Neanderthal-Williams-Jr-on-stage-at-rallies-would-improve-the-Republican-image tangent? Or perhaps the why-do-so-many-white-men-who-make-$40,000-a-year-vote-like-they’re-CEOs tangent? But I digress. . . )
The worst part of this particular piece of McCain Campaign hyperbole is that while we have tens of thousands of true American heros risking their lives in a Middle Eastern Vietnam, our great senatorial war hero is giving similar status to an unlicensed plumber. Mothers of soldiers all over this country should be put off by that. (Including Sarah Palin and Cindy McCain.)
And “my idol“? Forgive me, but, are you shitting me? Now Joe has been elevated above the legions of service men and women, firefighters, police officers, and Good Samaritans. Apparently, he has joined the ranks of Mother Teresa, Gandhi and, in McCain’s personally acknowledged pantheon, Ronald Reagan. (Pardon me while I recover from the fact that I just put Mother Teresa, Gandhi and Ronald Reagan in the same group.) At this rate, Joe needs more than just a publicist and a record deal; he needs disciples.
While Barack Obama campaigns with Bill Clinton and Al Gore and receives the endorsements of Colin Powell and a whole slew of Republican defectors, John McCain is laying the groundwork for Joe the Plumber: American Hero as the next Lifetime movie of the week. And McCain wants to question Obama’s associations?
I’ll write more later. Right now I’m late for a meeting with my publicist.
Deb the English Teacher