How much money do you need to spend to convince completely unrepresentative "average Americans" that you’re the guy or gal who should run the free world?
June 13, 2007 – Geneva (apj.us) – From a distance, I can't help but laugh out loud as players in the mainstream media – including Chris Cillizza and Pitchfork Pat Buchanan – are already out to convince Americans that the opinion of a hundred thousand pig-farming, corn-growing, Hot-Pocket®-gorging "average Americans" from Iowa, of all places, have a disproportionate influence in deciding who might be the next president. As if Iowa is of any importance whatsoever to anyone but Iowans…
Unlike the previous three presidential cycles, we are now seeing presidential candidates ignoring Iowans this far in advance of the caucuses, refusing to be paraded around like prize bulls (or heifers) at some county fair. This is a terrific development, a slap in the face of a gaggle of Iowan women in Wal-Mart designer stretch pants and men so interbred that they all appear recently cloned.
How much money do you need to spend to convince completely unrepresentative "average Americans" that you’re the guy or gal who should run the free world? Some candidates are saying not a whole lot – choosing instead to focus beyond even New Hampshire and focus on Super- and Ultra-Mega-Super Tuesday. And candidates in both parties get it: Iraq and Bush's incompetence and corruption are the big issues.
Iowans, meanwhile – at least the ones that matter in the Beltway, on Wall Street and the commodities markets – care about only a few issues, most importantly how to continue to pocket more money from the rest of America's taxpayers in the form of crop and ethanol subsidies.
There are only a few companies that truly profit from Midwestern grain, most notably Archer Daniels Midland and Cargill, who get billions of dollars a year – that’s billions in tax credits and federal schemes that old and very wise Dwayne Andreas put in place before he was put in the "home." That's money that rarely, if ever, gets passed to any “family farmer” in Iowa or anywhere else – if there are any family farmers left aside from the casts of re-runs like "Dallas" and "Green Acres."
Ethanol may be great for the environment – but it’s time that the little guy shares in the profits, not just two or three mega companies.
I still remember the amazing sight of bleating farmers who looked as if they were on the verge of lynching John McCain during the first Iowa GOP presidential debate of 1999. Ol' JJ dared tell them the truth about the multi-billion-dollar ethanol bonanza. That sad spectacle proved that Iowans are not only politically myopic but plenty greedy – not unlike capuchin monkeys loose on a date farm. Iowans want nothing more than to buy newer, bigger and heftier Ford F-150 pickups and remote-control satellite TV dishes that look more like an anti-ballistic missile defense system than "home entertainment" gear.
In weeks, if not sooner, you will hear GOP candidates again lamenting "the disappearance of family farms." And that will no doubt be followed by those treacly Farm Aid concerts (funded by ADM and Cargill to protect their corporate welfare… er, pardon me, their deserved subsidies). It'll be planned, produced and broadcast in hi-def in an effort to make us weep for these poor families who can’t keep their "tiny" farms.
Here's the hard truth: “dwarf” farms can't make it, and I for one am tired of bailing out these stubborn regressives just so that they can pass their multi-million dollar farm land – tax free – to idiot children crazy enough to want to stay in Iowa.
"Saving family farms" is akin to "saving family fighter jet manufacturers."
Come to think of it, why not underwrite "family" plane manufacturers so we can have a bigger collection of unneeded flying war machines to choose from? Now that's an idea even a decimated K Street could pick up and run with! We could fuel them on pure ethanol! I've seen "The Astronaut Farmer" – and I'm certain each family could design and put out maybe three or even five hand-built, cutting-edge fighter jets or antimissile systems each decade. The competition will also keep Lockheed Martin and Boeing on their toes.
Can't you just see Bono and Brad Pitt hosting a "Family Fighter Jet Aid" concert in Ames?
Hey, Iowans: get real. Learn how to build computers like they did in South Dakota. Tiny farms no longer make sense, even for the small-minded.
If you think I’m being cruel, then I suggest you take the sage advice of dead comedian Sam Kinison and apply it to Iowa. Sam once said, "Somaliland, wake up! Things don’t grow in the frigging desert! Move!"
Rewrite: "Iowans, wake up! Nobody cares what you think."
Trusting Iowans – or even New or Used Hampshirites – to presage the election of the most powerful individual on earth is tantamount to asking Dick Cheney to wipe out blown CIA covers, the culture of corruption, and the unitary executive.