Tea Parties and Blue Jeans

Ah, not quite sure what to make of the anti-tax tea-parties held throughout the country yesterday. I’m all for making your views known to government officials and elected leaders — individually and collectively. So from that standpoint good. Whether anyone actually listens is another question. Oops. I digress. Yet something about the tea parties strikes me as being a little contrived, less of a spontaneous grassroots uprising and more of an orchestrated astroturfing by organizations such as FreedomWorks and Fox News.

And maybe it’s the first national tweet-off in Newt Gingrich’s 2012 bid for the White House. If so: Woot. The Republicans got their lunch eaten by the Obama bloggers and online gurus last time around. Maybe the tea parties are the equivalent of digital spring training for conservatives as they get ready to field a new team in the next presidential campaign, already under way. No matter.

The fact is we face big problems in this country — still fighting two wars, shedding thousands of jobs each and every month, getting ready for GM and Chrysler to go belly up and so on. So no reason not to protest about taxes, government spending or anything else if you believe the country is heading in the wrong direction. But it looks to me like the ship has sailed — and that George W and his team (remember when the then-Prez didn’t even know we were in a recession?) have some responsibility and accountability (moral if not legal) for the course we are on now, good or bad.

OK. With the anti-tax, anti-spending tea parties history, what’s next? What’s the next rallying cry for conservatives as they continue to wander in the legislative wilderness?

How about banning blue jeans?

George Will fired the opening salvo in his Washington Post column — “Demon Denim.” And Will is embracing and embellishing the view of Daniel Akst in a recent Wall Street Journal online article, “Down With Denim.”

Here’s from Akst:

If hypocrisy had a flag, it would be cut from denim, for it is in denim that we invest our most nostalgic and destructive agrarian longings — the ones that prompted all those exurban McMansions now sliding off their manicured lawns and into foreclosure, dragging down the global financial system with them. Denim is the SUV of fabrics, the wardrobe equivalent of driving a hulking Land Rover to the Whole Foods Market. Our fussily tailored blue jeans, prewashed and acid-treated to look not just old but even dirty, are really a sad disguise. They’re like Mao jackets, an unusually dreary form of sartorial conformity by means of which we reassure one another of our purity and good intentions.

Here’s from Will:

Edmund Burke — what he would have thought of the denimization of America can be inferred from his lament that the French Revolution assaulted “the decent drapery of life”; it is a straight line from the fall of the Bastille to the rise of denim — said: “To make us love our country, our country ought to be lovely.” Ours would be much more so if supposed grown-ups would heed St. Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, and St. Barack’s inaugural sermon to the Americans, by putting away childish things, starting with denim.

Oh, boy. I think you can see where we are going here:

  • Blue jeans = uniform for the masses = French Revolution = socialism

In the spirit of  populist protests and tea parties, we have to stop this movement and thinking — now.

So no matter where you are at — be it work or play — demonstrate your independence and immediately drop your blue jeans to half-mast.

And stand up for America!

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