[To ensure that this post is work-safe, family-friendly, and legal, all photos below have the following parts blurred out: - exposed genitals - exposed butt-cracks - female breasts - the faces of children or anyone who appears to be a minor - the faces of passersby who may not wish to be associated with the [...]
“America is on the brink!” the Impossibly Talented Orator thundered at the podium. “Only the most extreme measures shall save her!” A lock of his hair, slightly dampened with manly sweat, fell rakishly across one eye. Several women in the audience fainted from excitement. Not a Teleprompter was in sight. The Impossibly Talented Orator looked directly into the souls of every single person in the million-strong audience. “Damn the Democrats and their communist puppetmasters! Rise up for freedom! Rise up for success! Rise up——”
“Willard, your smile is fading a bit,” said his wife Ann, interrupting his reverie. “You know a scowl is not acceptable. You promised to keep a friendly smile pasted on your face for the entire campaign. Now keep waving at those middle-class voters.”
Momentarily confused, Willard Mitty raised his arm and waved at the farmers and unemployed coal miners gathered outside the ’50s-era diner hosting that morning’s photo op. A gentle elbow from Ann jolted him back to the task at hand. He looked at his watch — 10:17. Two minutes behind schedule. Willard ate a corn dog and grinned and shook hands with Likely Registered Voters, and then delivered some prepared remarks to the press pool: “When 18.2% of businesses in southern Ohio have trouble completing the paperwork required under section 47a of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, it leads to a reduction of manufacturing output as much as 29.5%….”
Mitty finally exhaled as he entered the campaign bus. “We’ve got an 11:30 at the state fair,” said the Assistant Campaign Manager. “I’ll debrief you on the way.” Mitty sighed and gazed out the window at the passing corn fields as the debriefing droned on in the background.
“Captain Mittington! The dastardly Brits have hoisted the mizzen-mast,” cried the bos’n's mate. “There’s no stopping them now!” The Captain peered through the fog of war with his trusty spyglass. He noticed what not even the Brits had realized: the Westerlies had stalled and the English fleet was now in the Doldrums. “All men topside!” cried Captain Mittington. “We’re boarding them a-port come hell or high water!”
The Captain swung onto the British deck and landed just as a cannonball broke his rope. Sparks flew from his blade as he repelled the lunges of several limey swordsmen. “Never shall overly taxed tea touch American shores!” the Captain yelled. With two swift strokes of his cutlass he sliced the moorings which held the cargo of tea on deck. “To the sea! To the sea with your accursed tea!” ——
“The Bipartisan Protocol needs another revision by the Compromise Committee,” interrupted Willard’s Ombudsman of Moderation. “I’ve faxed the Mutually Agreed-Upon Points of Reasonableness to your pager.” Mitty looked up, startled. The Compromise Committee? Yes, now he remembered: He agreed to co-chair it at the last Moderate Conference.
“I’m quite sure that the Points of Reasonableness are, well, reasonable,” Mitty said. “Are we at the county fair yet?”
His campaign aides looked at each other nervously. After an awkward silence, one cleared his throat and spoke up. “Willard, the county fair appearance wrapped up 45 minutes ago. Your joke went over great.”
“You know, the one where you say, ‘Why did the chicken only partly cross the carnival midway? Because he wanted to stay in the middle of the road — just like all of you, and me as well!’ It took the Noncontroversial Joke Team three days to come up with that zinger!”
Mitty barely remembered saying the joke and the wild applause from average people it elicited. He must have been going through the motions, as his mind seemed to be elsewhere at the time. But where? What was he thinking? The voices around him faded as he gazed inward.
“Vilard Mitté at your service,” the dashing recruit saluted at the French Legionnaire fort in the Sahara Desert. Glowing ash crumbled from the Gitane cigarette dangling off his chapped lips. “I have marched five hundred kilometres through ze burning sands to relieve your position.”
The Commandant eyed him with disgust and disbelief. “Just vous and no one else? I snort with derision! We are surrounded by Saracens and savage desert nomads who desire death more than we desire life. How can one grizzled but handsome world-weary adventurer save us?”
“How? How?” laughed the dashing Vilard Mitté through his five-o’clock shadow. “Avec le intestinal fortitude, mon commandant!”
One reason why undecided voters remain undecided is that they are uncomfortable with newness. If forced to choose between the familiar and the strange, they tend to retreat to the familiar — if the two options are otherwise similar. But what if the familiar option is now damaged goods? The hesitant chooser then faces a dilemma, whether it’s best to stick with the flawed product you know, or to take a leap of faith and anoint an unfamiliar new product the status of best friends forever.
And thus they become paralyzed with indecision.
Decisive people never face this dilemma. If something fails, they have no problem discarding it and replacing it with a superior substitute. But hesitant, un-self-confident people have difficulty visualizing something that doesn’t already exist. And that makes it difficult for them to make changes in their lives.
This is especially true with momentous decisions. It might be possible, on a brave day, for a hesitant person to test out a new ice cream flavor. But to vote for a total stranger to be president? Whoa whoa whoa, slow down, that’s more than I can handle. It’s so much easier to vote for the existing president because, well, because he’s already called “President.”
Yeah, sure, everyone tells me he’s not a very good president, but I just can’t visualize someone else as president, because, well, because the other guy isn’t called “President.”
Those of you who vote according to your personal convictions or out of a political philosophy might find this kind of dithering hesitancy to be incomprehensible. But it lies at the root of why some voters, even this late in the game, remain “undecided.” It’s not really that they’re undecided, but rather that they haven’t quite yet come to terms with the notion of “President Romney.”
Such people need a little extra encouragement to internalize “President Romney” in their mental vocabulary. And once they become comfortable with the concept, they will feel freer to embrace something new and vote for Romney, because the notion of “President Romney” will no longer be strange and unfamiliar.
Furthermore, if you haven’t made up your mind at this stage, then you are completely resistant to words, arguments, logic, rationality, and information. Your mind must be approached at a subconscious level, perhaps through the pineal gland.
To that end, I have created a new video specifically aimed at undecided voters. It serves one purpose and one purpose only: To make viewers familiar with and comfortable with the phrase “President Romney.” To achieve this, I have carefully overlaid an ever-growing crescendo of voices repeating “President Romney” on a hypnotic visual background, in this case the “Hypnotoad” character from the TV series Futurama.
If you’re reading this analysis, you’ve almost certainly already decided whom to vote for; this video is not aimed at you. Instead, it is aimed at those people who are teetering on the edge of voting for Romney, but first need to become at ease with the concept “President Romney” before pulling that lever for him in the voting booth.
So, I encourage everyone reading this to repost this video wherever you can, especially in non-political Web environments, or in the kinds of places where undecided voters might congregate (presuming there are such places).
To make sharing easy, here is the URL of the YouTube page with the video:
And here is the YouTube embed code, for those sites that require it:
<iframe width="640" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/JwOVD7z-gqA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
And here is a link to the page itself:
We’ve tried reason. We’ve tried emotion. Now let’s seal the deal with hypnosis!
Things quickly turned sour for President Obama on Monday in San Francisco at what was supposed to be a stopover in friendly territory. Instead, he was greeted by angry protesters from both wings of the political spectrum. Even independent libertarians expressed their disappointment in a president that seems to be hemorrhaging support with each passing day.
Protesters swirled around the entrance to the Bill Graham Auditorium, tormenting the ticket-holders waiting in line to see Obama and radical socialist musician Michael Franti. What made this particular protest unique was that its participants spanned the entire spectrum of American politics, from conservatives to leftists, from marijuana advocates to the NRA, from the Tea Party to Code Pink, from Occupy San Francisco to “Porn Stars for Romney” to PETA, and everyone in between. Who can unite them all? Only Obama!
This Romney fan (who caucused with the Tea Party protesters) pretty much summed up the mood of the day.
Just steps away, this anti-drone activist (who caucused with World Can’t Wait) was even more harsh with his criticism of Obama.
The “states’ rights”-minded libertarian marijuana advocates were unhappy with Obama for clamping down on pot clinics, even in states with medical marijuana laws.
They even deployed their most potent weapon, the dreaded Giant Puppet.
Didn’t matter where each protest group fell on the political spectrum — they all were unhappy with Obama.
Who else showed up to protest the president?
Occupy Wall Street? Check.
The NRA? Check.
Code Pink? As always.
PETA went the Full Pachyderm with an angry elephant.
Single-payer health care advocates were miffed about the muddled half-measures known as Obamacare.
“Porn Stars for Romney” entertained the crowds with his roller-skate antics and hilarious “I Built It” costume, but most people could not even figure out whose side he was on. Any protester riffing on “You didn’t build that” is presumed to be anti-Obama, but Mr. Porn Star later seemed to reveal that his Romney advocacy was sarcastic, bewildering onlookers as to what he was protesting for, if anything.
Most likely he was an ideological counterpart to this guy, who hated everyone equally.
After a quick stop in Los Angeles for some high-toned fundraisers on Sunday, Obama started Monday morning with a short visit to the outskirts of Bakersfield where he unveiled a monument to Cesar Chavez. Then he arrived in San Francisco for a hush-hush fundraiser with unknown individuals at the InterContinental Hotel (seen here surrounded by a security cordon of police vehicles) — an event not only closed to the press, but the existence of which was kept entirely under wraps.
Absolutely no one knew about this event — the tiny handful of people on hand were accidental passersby.
The next stop on his itinerary was the Bill Graham Auditorium in San Francisco’s Civic Center, where Alice Waters and all the trendiest chefs in the Bay Area prepared supper for Obama and any other 1%er millionaires willing to fork over $20,000 per person for the privilege of presidential access (full menu from the event visible here).
Then they all moved into the adjacent auditorium, joined by the hoi polloi (seen above waiting in line) who paid $100 each for tickets to see Obama and a concert by socialist performer Michael Franti, who presumably entertained Obama and the cadres and revolutionary vanguard with some of his trademark lyrics like:
I met a black man who became a police officer
officer, officer, officer, officer, officer, overseer
he tried to tell me it was the only job available
either rob or join the mob ’cause I’m not salable
one night he went out on an undercover sting-ing
bought some smack tried to break the heroin ring-ring
Two cops white cops saw juggling goin’ down
they spilled his brain like homey the fuckin’ clown
Mama Mama Mama Mama I couldn’t say no
got sick and tired of seein’ people bein’ treated ill
picked up my nines, walked up from behind
tapped two of them on the neck so I could meet their eyes direct
I didn’t do it for tha payroll
(Also on the bill was someone named “John Legend.”)
The Obama voters had to run a gauntlet of protest groups on the way into the auditorium.
Various northern California Tea Party groups made up the largest protest contingent by far.
Larry of the Fund47 blog has an extensive slideshow of Tea Partiers at the event.
Many of the Obama fans in line were wearing large buttons that said “I’m Entitled…”, along with some smaller writing that was hard to make out.
I finally got a close-up view of them, only to discover that they read “I’m Entitled…to know how I can get an $87 million IRA in less than 14,500 years. Bay Area for Obama 10/8/2012.” This was apparently an attempt to make some kind of political hay about Romney being wealthy and about his comments on the corrosive entitlement mentality, but the buttons were just a disaster. First of all, it was difficult for random onlookers to read the small text, so it just seemed like all the Obama voters were walking around announcing proudly that they feel “entitled.” But even if you squinted and were able to read to rest of the message, it still was some kind of Democratic in-joke that made little sense to the average person. As for Romney’s sin of being wealthy — what about S.F.’s representatives in Washington, Nancy Pelosi and Dianne Feinstein, being among the richest members of Congress with fortunes that rival or surpass Romney’s? Ooops. Meme FAIL.
Yesterday the motley remnants of Occupy Los Angeles finally got around to celebrating Occupy Wall Street’s one-year anniversary (more than two weeks after all the other OWS groups did so.) In fact, this lackadaisical attitude about their own rally perfectly reflected the newly emergent operational philosophy of OccupyLA, which one might deem Anarcho-Laziness: the right to avoid employment.
Once again Ringo of Ringo’s Pictures was on hand at Downtown L.A.’s Pershing Square to record the festivities. A blow-by-blow account of how the one-year anniversary march played out will be posted soon at ringospictures.com; this PJM post will serve as a preview of some of the more amusing scenes.
Distancing themselves from both major political parties — and from any semblance of human decency — the Occupiers proudly showed off their grandest banner, an allegorical Gauginesque painting of a Republican elephant copulating as only an elephant can with a Democrat she-donkey (technically a “jenny“).
But a major theme of the day seemed to be an active antipathy to the notion of work. The Occupiers seek a new societal paradigm in which people laze about and enjoy themselves, while magical fairies and unicorns bring them delicacies on silver trays.
Capitalism, you see, has robbed us all of our free time. If it wasn’t for that mean ol’ capitalism we could just slack off all day! But as the sign at the lower right shows…
…not everybody is clear on the concept. Quoting Karl Marx directly conflicts with the principles of Anarcho-Laziness: the whole point of communism is to ensure that everybody has a job.