A Shrewdness of Apes

An Okie teacher banished to the Midwest. "Education is not the filling a bucket but the lighting of a fire."-- William Butler Yeats

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Chip Saltsman for GOP chairman

I would like to put out my endorsement for Chip Saltsman to be elected the next chair of the Republican National Committee.

I believe that Mr. Saltsman encompasses all of the qualities that define the modern Republican party. If Republicans want to elect a chair of the national committee that completely represents who they are as a political movement, Chip Saltsman is your man!

First, he demonstrated his sense of judgment by sending out a lovely CD full of songs conveying the principles of the modern Republican party:
The controversy surrounding a comedy CD distributed by Republican National Committee chair candidate Chip Saltsman has not torpedoed his bid and might have inadvertently helped it.

Four days after news broke that the former Tennessee GOP chairman had sent a CD that included a song titled “Barack the Magic Negro” to the RNC members he is courting, some of those officials are rallying around the embattled Saltsman, with a few questioning whether the national media and his opponents are piling on.

“When I heard about the story I had to figure out what was going on for myself,” said Mark Ellis, the chairman of the Maine Republican Party. “When I found out what this was about I had to ask, ‘boy, what’s the big deal here?’ because there wasn’t any.”

Alabama Republican committeeman Paul Reynolds said the fact the Saltsman sent him a CD with the song on it “didn’t bother me one bit.”

“Chip probably could have thought it through a bit more, but he was doing everyone a favor by giving us a gift,” he said. “This is just people looking for something to make an issue of.”

“I don’t think he intended it as any kind of racial slur. I think he intended it as a humor gift,” Oklahoma GOP committeewoman Carolyn McClarty added. “I think it was innocently done by Chip.”

The song came with 40 others on an album from conservative satirist Paul Shanklin, a personal friend of Saltsman. The song is a parody of a 2007 Los Angeles Times column of the same title and is written to the tune of “Puff the Magic Dragon.”

“Barack the Magic Negro lives in D.C.” the opening of the song goes. “The L.A. Times, they called him that ‘cause he’s not authentic like me. Yeah, the guy from the L.A. paper said he makes guilty whites feel good. They’ll vote for him, and not for me ‘cause he’s not from the hood.”

The song, written shortly after the publication of the Times column, was first played on the Rush Limbaugh radio show. On Monday, Limbaugh prominently re-posted the song on the top left corner of his website above the headline, “Drive-by media misreporting of ‘Barack the Magic Negro’ song.”

The flap has generated unflattering attention at a time when the GOP is trying to rebuild its brand and reach out to new voters after an election in which GOP presidential nominee John McCain ran poorly among minority constituencies.

The day after the story was first reported by The Hill, RNC Chairman Mike Duncan issued a statement expressing disgust over the song.

“The 2008 election was a wake-up call for Republicans to reach out and bring more people into our party,” said Duncan, who is seeking reelection to his post. “I am shocked and appalled that anyone would think this is appropriate as it clearly does not move us in the right direction.”

Duncan was joined by Michigan GOP Chair Saul Anuzis, another RNC chair aspirant who chided Saltsman for sending out the CD.

North Dakota Republican Party Chairman Gary Emineth said he was “disappointed” when he heard about the story and questioned Saltsman’s viability as a candidate going forward.

“There are a lot of things about Chip that would have made a good a RNC chairman, but this has definitely hurt him,” he said in an interview with Politico. “With less than a month to go Chip needs to be talking about where he wants to lead the party and he is not going to get that opportunity.”

Not everyone is so sure, with some RNC members contending that Anuzis and Duncan may have actually hurt their candidacies with their responses.

“Those are two guys who just eliminated themselves from this race for jumping all over Chip on this,” one committee member told Politico. “Mike Duncan is a nice guy, but he screwed up big time by pandering to the national press on this.”

While South Carolina GOP Chair Katon Dawson and former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele have decided to stay away from the controversy, offering no comment, former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, who would be the party’s first black chairman, has drawn notice for his vigorous defense of Saltsman.

“Unfortunately, there is hypersensitivity in the press regarding matters of race. This is in large measure due to President-Elect Obama being the first African-American elected president,” Blackwell said in a statement. “I don't think any of the concerns that have been expressed in the media about any of the other candidates for RNC chairman should disqualify them. When looked at in the proper context, these concerns are minimal. All of my competitors for this leadership post are fine people.”

As a result of his position, a source close to the race said that at least 12 uncommitted committee members have contacted Blackwell to thank him for his support for Saltsman and have expressed anger toward Duncan and Anuzis “for throwing a good Republican under the bus.”

Indeed, in a fluid race in which six candidates are vying for the votes of 168 members, both Blackwell and Saltsman stand to benefit from a backlash to the flap.

Most observers expect Duncan to lead after the first ballot, but few expect he or any other candidate will be able to secure election on a first ballot. For either Saltsman or Blackwell to win election they will likely need the votes of the other’s supporters to break in their direction, along with any other committee members who are not enamored of Duncan’s leadership.
In calls to committee members in recent days, both Saltsman and Blackwell have been reminding Republicans of how both Duncan and Anuzis reacted to the story.

“I wasn’t angered by what Mike had said, it was just revealing to me how each one responded,” said Ellis of Maine, who as an uncommitted member received calls from all six candidates Monday. “Their responses were kind of a surprise to me because I saw it as something that was not an issue, something that was manufactured from outside the committee.”

Those nasty bastards in the mainstream media (or as Spiro Agnew liked to call 'em right before they selfishly revealed his profit sharing plan, those "nattering nabobs of negativism") are to blame for this whole thing, because they have been after good Republicans ever since they cruelly went after poor ol' Spiro and then Richard Nixon, all because they were jealous of what a great president and moral leader he was.

I'm so glad that Rush Limbaugh, another fine hero of the party, has included a link to the song in question, and am so happy it replaced that infomercial for OxyContin.

Poor old Chip, good ole boy that he is, was completely misunderstood by some "Democrats in Republican clothing" who objected to the use of the term "Negro" when referring to the current president elect, Barack HUSSEIN Obama, whom new research has shown to not only have been born in Tehran as the love child of the Ayatollah Khomeini, but to have the mark of the beast and cloven hooves (that's why you never see him barefoot).

Now, about those backstabbing bastards who dared to criticize good ol' Chip: first of all, what do you expect from a sumbitch named Saul, anyway? Who could take any Republican seriously who has the same name as someone who made it his mission to persecute the followers of our Lord and Savior? You know we can't trust their kind to look after anyone's interests but their own.

But Ken Blackwell has shown himself to be our kind of Negro. He knows that "Negro" is really a term of affection, like "boy" or "uncle." Hell, the word "Negro" always reminds me of a time when life was simpler, and you could always find someone to shine your shoes or bust up a chiffarobe. And that's the kind of time we need to have restored by men like Chip Saltsman.

What's all this fuss about some music? I think Republicans need to show their love of the arts more, because you can only listen to Toby Keith and Lee Greenwood so many times, you know? It's a wonderful idea to rehabilitate that piece of commie trash Peter, Paul, and Mary and cleanse that song of its ability to hook our kids on drugs, because really, what did you think that dragon was puffing, anyway? I think the other candidates for chairman should show their support for Chip by helping put on a minstrel show-- now, THAT was good clean family entertainment! Woo-ee!

So, please support Chip, before those Magic Negroes and their commie friends take over EVERYTHING, wanting to hand out welfare to every person who's lost his job because he selfishly demanded that he be paid more than three dollars an hour in a vicious plot to cut corporate profit. Right thinkers everywhere know that that's a waste of money that just encourages the little people to expect things like socialized medicine instead of learning how to live with a little cough for months. Using taxpayer money to bail out the saps who actually are stupid enough to pay the taxes is all a commie plot. It makes them uppity instead of realizing that they should be grateful just to have the chance of getting crushed by heavy machinery in a factory run without the nanny state protection of OSHA. The GOP must stand up for using guvmint funds for good capitalist purposes, like gutting the EPA or pouring trillions of dollars into the pockets of good Republican-supporting corporations and protecting bonuses for executives everywhere so that they can hire more yard workers and pool boys and brass polishers on their yachts to create good jobs for illegal immigrants whose asses we can ship back south of the border if they complain those who should be grateful for whatever trickles down. Because that's what Republican economic policy stands for. And we can't have that if Magic Negroes think they have the right to actually run for president and then promise to change the way things always have been.

Chip Saltsman for chair of the Republican National Committee! He's got a vision for America! Electing him will drive all of the "wrong sort" straight outta the Party, which can only make it stronger!

(PS-- Y'all DO realize that I'm being satirical in this piece, right?)

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At 12/30/08, 6:58 PM, Blogger Fred said...

Way to go, Chip. Hiding behind stupidity is always a solid defense.

At 12/30/08, 7:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, I'm a southerner and a Tennessean. And I found your blog entry to be kind of cute and funny, as you made fun of southerners and Tennesseans. I hope I'm big enough to have a sense of humor and I hope Barry Obama is as well . If not, we may be in for a long four years.
I do enjoy your blog, even though I am a Christian, social conservative.

At 12/30/08, 7:54 PM, Blogger CaliforniaTeacherGuy said...

"...bust up a chiffarobe..."

Isn't that line from a Flannery O'Connor story? Sounds mighty familiar, my dear!

Great job, goin' after Chip!

Happy New Year!

At 12/30/08, 9:52 PM, Blogger Lightly Seasoned said...

That's because it is from To Kill a Mockingbird.

At 12/30/08, 10:06 PM, Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

Fred-- the best defense is a good offense!

Amy-- I'm an Okie and thus a quasi-southerner. And I'm a Christian and a progressive! And we both like to laugh. See? We have lots in common! I even say y'all. Come on back any time!

CTG-- LS is correct! It's from TKAM-- one of the very best books EVER.

LS-- I'm so proud.

I hope the people visiting the blog from overseas know that I am joking.... Y'all DO read the labels, right?

At 12/31/08, 10:22 AM, Blogger Mrs. Chili said...

The scary thing is, Ms. Cornelius, that a lot of people DO think this way - especially the next-to-last paragraph. I know; I've become the demonized face of the left for a lot of people, and the vehemence with which these people are coming at me is starting to get a little frightening.

At 12/31/08, 5:18 PM, Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

I know-- I work with about a dozen of 'em. And even better-- they think the Bible tells them to hate people.

At 1/1/09, 1:39 AM, Blogger Deb Sistrunk Nelson said...

Just stopping by to say Happy New Year!

At 1/3/09, 10:46 AM, Blogger teachergirl said...

"This White House that feels that government is better for children than parents are. That looks at 40 years of degrading and humiliating free lunches, handed out in a spectacularly failed effort to level the playing field, and says 'Let's try 40 more'. This White House that says of anyone that points that out to them that they are cold and mean and racists, and then accuses the Republicans of using the politics of fear. This White House that loves the Bill of Rights, all of them - except the second one."

"You don't like people who do like guns. You don't like the people. Think about that the next time you make a joke about the South."

This is something Ainsley Hayes once said on The West Wing. I tend to believe that whoever wrote it knew a lot about life in the South and the United States in general. People don't like Southerners. Period. They tend to lump us all together - rednecks, uneducated, backwards. Just because we all haven't embraced change doesn't mean we're interested in busting up a chifferobe. However, perhaps you should be chiding the black teachers I know who are passing some rather non "we are the world" e-mails - my own personal favorite is the one about all the white people reporting for cotton picking duty on January 20, 2008. Perhaps not the change you are talking about?

At 1/3/09, 3:06 PM, Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

Hm-- quoting a fictional character from a TV show as an example-- Reminds me of Dan Quayle....

Actually, I don't think that this is a "Southerners" versus "Northerners" issue at all. This is also not a "black" versus "white" issue. If I am disparaging ignorance and racism-- and I am-- why do you assume that that means I am making fun of Southerners? I find that an interesting assumption that YOU are making, not me.

I hail from a quasi-southern state, after all.

This is about some people-- both Northerners and Southerners, if you pay attention-- believing that they lost an election not because people were hungry for change from what had not been working for the last forty years but because they were somehow placed on an uneven playing field by a "magic Negro"-- which is the same "politics of victimization" mess that has damaged our ability to stand together as Americans.

I do not know of these emails about which you speak (and I assume the date is supposed to be 2009)-- but they are just as stupid as the idiotic CD.

As long as we continue to Balkanize ourselves into Southerners or Northerners or African-Americans or Asian Americans instead of just identifying as Americans first and foremost, the citizens of this country will always hold themselves back from fulfilling the promise and potential that this wonderful country provides.

At 1/4/09, 10:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd really like to read that "cotton picking" email! It sounds hilarious. And, again, I'm a southerner. And southerners know that if you can't laugh at yourself, then you're "done for" for sure! :)


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