Thursday, December 22, 2011

Butt and Switch? Yes, a Similar Theme...

Today I am inspired by Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner's tirade against Michelle Obama's temerity to say to the nation, "Hey, maybe we shouldn't shove EVERYTHING down our fat gobs and maybe exercise every now and then." His defense?  "She has a large posterior." Yup, he went to "she got a big ass" as his go to point.

Let's take a look at that tochis for a moment.

Yes, I went for a gratuitous butt shot of the First Lady. I am, if nothing else, wicked classy. It is to make a point though. Michelle Obama is not a svelte and elfin gal. She is a solid built woman. Not a small gal, but hardly what you'd call large. She is a woman in her 40s who looks pretty good.

Let's take a look at the Congressman who made the shot.


Now then, before I start to make unkind notations about front butt and his love of Cheetos--something that the article alludes to, and is no real secret--the Wisconsin House Representative is actually on the House Science Committee. He WAS on the House Select Committee for Energy Independence and Global Warming, until the Committee was killed off.  I could make unkind cuts on his introduction of US PATRIOT--an act he didn't write, but certainly has supported over the years.  I could point to his vote against aid to Katrina victims that GW Bush signed.  I could point to his intransigence over seeking to deny the widow of a US Marine legal immigration, with their son, after her husband was killed in Iraq.  I could point to these things, and say very unkind things. But, likewise, you can praise the man for standing with Nancy Pelosi as the only Republican to greet the Dali Lama in 2008 to protest China's treatment of Tibet. While Sensenbrenner has had his controversies, this particular flap is not so much telling of the man, than our times.

This is an issue that folks are creating waves on, simply to create waves.

Slim Goodbody. Mr. Rogers suggested healthy snacks. Sesame Street suggests healthy snacks and exercising. The Presidential Council on Physical Fitness. This is manufactured flack, because it is Michelle Obama picking up an idea that has been around for a long while. Not during just Democratic Presidencies. But since frippin' Ford's days.

Mind you, there IS pushback against the concept just on ideological bounds, but on the companies that are making inroads to putting their products in front of kids all the time in the form of soda and drink machines. Clearly defined product endorsements, and products directly dropped into school lunch programs, that are EASY to produce, and fairly cheap to provide, but lets face it, processed foods are not generally grand sources of nutrition. Which is kind of the point.

School lunch programs make up millions in sales in each state. They are a captive market, and a source of state and Federal funds. These programs are ripe targets for some companies looking to expand, not waistlines, but their profit margins. That their products aren't really good for you...that's a pesky, niggling sort of thing. There are dollars to be made, and Congresscritters to pay to help swing contracts their way. And when someone suggests that maybe we NOT feed our kids a bunch of processed crap with extra corn syrup, a lot of empty calories, salt, and fat for the f*ck of it, that scares the folks whose job it is to sell that stuff, and who just happened to get the grand idea that schools were a great market.
It is a confluence of very real financial impact to folks who figured that schools were going to be easy marks, and the folks who are going to oppose anything that comes from the President or his family. If it were immunization, there would be a confluence of folks who would get up in arms about the gub'ment telling us how to raise our chil'runs, and the vaccine crowd would get tapped to crow about it. If it were raising awareness about abuse, then folks would be screaming how we can't discipline our kids without the Big Government poking its nose in our bid'ness! The rumblings are out there, and there are folks to oppose nearly any issue, if it comes from the President or near him. If, tomorrow, the President were to propose a day celebrating NASCAR and apple pie I'm sure that there would be a huge uproar against the hypocrisy of looking to reduce climate change gases and support of racing, and the elitist "Stock Car" racing that average Americans can't possibly compete in, while simultaneously frothing about the celebration of invasive species introduced across a virgin America and the supremacy of European pie, when the obviously older fry bread and churro were overlooked, and how dare the Office of the President slander the fine Latin and Native communities... 

Opposition on the basis of a policy proposed by the Executive is nothing new. That it DOES have real financial impact is likewise not surprising. Burying the opposition because it might make you look like sort of petulant child who is a shill for an industry looking to shove even MOAR crap down our kids' gobs...that's a special sort of fun poking. Because, the issue isn't, as some are going to run with, that he called the First Lady a fatass, but that he opposes her agenda on grounds that she is the wife of the President, and that any movement to get healthier kids could mean endangering contracts with school lunch programs and reducing consumer spending on crap.  Like the Cheetos that he so dearly loves. 

Mind you, I LOVE Cheetos too. Not the puffy ones, but the crinkly dense suckers. It's salt and fat in a handy corn medium, and they ARE tasty. Let's not get that screwed up. But the opposition to the First Lady's agenda from several sources stems two fold, and it's not really being discussed. While trying to frame the opposition as being about "parents' rights to parent" and "big government" it boils down to simple opposition for opposition's sake, and "big government" is fine so long as it spends money on campaign sponsor's crap.  That his opposition is two fold, is far more subtle than some would give the man credit for. I am feeling generous though...

Crossposted to The Motley Moose


  1. it boils down to they don't like the Obamas because they're black. And liberal. And smarter than they are. And right on a whole lot of stuff.

  2. It's not even black. It's a line in the sand against a "side." That is real hypocrisy here.