Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Vampire? Godzilla?

One of the reasons the Republicans are going to lose this one is that they are mixing up vampires and Godzilla:

   ...once you've made a narrative choice, you do have to stick with it - you can't just keep bouncing around, or people become confused.  If you are telling the story of a scary vampire, you can't decide in chapter 2 that he's also 500 feet tall and radioactive and bent on destroying Tokyo, in chapter 3 that he is actually a giant man-eating shark, and in chapter 4 that he is all this and a super-terrorist trying to plant a nuclear bomb in Los Angeles.  All of these things are, indeed, scary, but taken together they add up to a muddle.

   This is the problem.  It's not just the McCain campaign's problem - although their inability to pick a narrative and stick to it is a special kind of inexcusable -  it's a problem for the entire wingnut noise machine.  Obama is a Marxist Muslim Arab Jesus Black White Terrorist Technocrat Racist Do-Gooder Liberal FDR Stalin Hilter Commie Fascist Gay Womanizing Naive Cynical Insider Noob Boring Radical Unaccomplished Elite Slick Gaffe-Prone Pedophile Pedophile-Seducing Liberation Theology Atheist Etc. & Anti-Etc. with a bunch of scary friends from - wait for it! - the Nineteen Hundred And Sixties.  It makes no sense.  It's a jumble sale of fears and scary associations from 50 years of wingnut witch hunts and smear campaigns, a flea market of pre-owned and antique resentments, and if one does detect a semi-consistent 1960's motif running through it all, that's because that's when most of these ideas were coined.