Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Stranger In A Strange Land

Remember the old SNL episode where Eddie Murphy infiltrated the Caucasian world to see how the other half lived? Well, Matt Taibbi does exactly that, by going deep undercover among grass roots Bushies in Orlando. Though he didn't have to apply the make-up that Eddie did, he still had to learn to walk like he had a stick up his ass. The similarity with Murphy's skit doesn't end there, either:

As the chairman of the Federation of Black Republicans for the Republican Party of the State of Florida, Johnny was used to being called to this sort of duty. On the phone with "Penny," he explained that his job involved traveling around the state to meet people. "Wherever they need me," he said, "that's where I be rolling to." Finally, Ben came through with someone more local. He managed to persuade a thirty-seven-year-old Promise Keeper Christian named Lorin Jones, a phlegmatic fellow who was recovering from two brushes with congestive heart failure, to come in for an interview.


A few minutes later, "Penny" called to cancel, citing car trouble. Lorin hung in there for a few minutes. Our older volunteer coordinator, Don Madden, came over to chat; the two of them apparently went to neighboring schools in California. Don's school, Don said, was great at basketball, but, he said, winking at Lorin, "You were probably the only guys who could have beaten us."

Lorin laughed uncomfortably. "We were OK," he said. "We were pretty good. Our college was pretty good at basketball."

Then another staffer came over to say hi. He knew Lorin from past campaigns and asked if Lorin was planning on coming in to do phone banking. Lorin answered that he wasn't, that he was busy setting up a school-supplies giveaway charity event in his neighborhood. The staffer laughed.

"Oh, come on," he said jokingly. "I know how you people don't like to work." Lorin, who was halfway out the door, stopped at this. His smile disappeared. For a moment, he was genuinely pissed off. "We don't like to work?" he said. "That's all I do is work to make you white Republicans look good."

Oh, there's plenty more where that came from; just read on to where Taibbi is invited to the Fundie's house for dinner.

I'm thinking Taibbi's story has to be a put on -- it's too perfect and too, well, true. If not, then Jesus. If so, then, well, Murphy's skit was "fiction", too, but there was a hell of a lot of truth in it.