Thursday, January 26, 2012

"One of these days, Alice..."

"...straight to the Moon!"

For those of you old enough to remember, that was the laugh line used by Jackie Gleason in the classic 1950s sitcom, The Honeymooners. (Although he mostly threatened to hit his wife "in the kisser.") Jackie Gleason played Ralph Cramden, the hot-tempered, angry everyman who can never live up to his wife's knowing, condescending expectations. Ah, good times.

One of these days, Alice, one of these days...
The thing about emotionally immature, angry fat old white dudes is, well, er, not really just one thing, per se, but erm...where was I? Oh, yeah, in the case of Ralph Cramden, he was just an Average Joe who kept trying to be more than the  simple bus driver that he was. He was a portly old school alpha male, king of his castle, big talking over-promising white dude who just wanted some respect, and was willing to talk shit (and occasionally threaten violence) to get it. He seemed like a quick-to-anger misogynist, but he really was just teddy bear with incredibly high blood pressure inside. But seriously, that was a freakin' TV show. What do we have today?

Well, we have Newt the Gingrich; a portly old school alpha male, king of his castle, big talking over-promising white dude who just wants some respect, and was willing to talk shit to get it (and by respect I mean, the presidency). But unlike Ralph, Newt really is a misogynist. You don't get the sense that there's an inner teddy bear in this guy who's been married three times and cheated on his second wife with his current wife. And yep, he gets real angry, real fast and he's an impetuous big talker, just like Ralph. In fact, yesterday, Newt told a Florida audience that we need ourselves a god-damned moonbase. According to Talking Points Memo:

Newt Gingrich, courting voters in Florida’s NASA-heavy “Space Coast,” pledged to build an American lunar colony within eight years if elected president. “By the end of my second term we will have the first permanent base on the moon and it will be American,” he said. According to Gingrich, the base would be used for “science, tourism, and manufacturing” and create a “robust industry” that would grow “precisely on the model of the airlines in the 1930s.”

All your moonbase are belong to US

Straight to da moon, Alice!
I dunno, I guess I see his point. I mean, here on planet earth we desperately need to revitalize the manufacturing industry, bring jobs back from abroad, fix our healthcare and education systems, decrease dependence on foreign oil, and boost a nascent green economy, among a few other things.

But you know what? Those small-thinking democrats and, um, people who aren't crazy and don't live in Florida, apparently just don't get the need for a moonbase patterned "pricisely on the model of the airlines in the 1930s."

Sure. Makes sense. I mean, how much could a moonbase possibly cost? I doubt it'd cost more than a trillion or so, right?

Whatever dude, gotta think big.

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