It’s since been surpassed in the news by some kind of medieval shaman revealing to women at long last that they possess hitherto unknown reproductive powers in the category of “ways to shut that whole thing down,” but last week something amusing happened to someone who shares Todd Akin’s pre-Enlightenment views on female autonomy: VP candidate and ex-professional hand model, Paul Ryan.
P-Ryddy got an unpleasant surprise last Thursday, when Tom Morello, guitarist of his favorite band, Rage Against the Machine, and aging Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino look-alike, penned a Rolling Stone editorial that called him “the embodiment of the machine that our music has been raging against.” He wonders which Rage song is Ryan’s favorite, “Is it the one where we condemn the genocide of Native Americans? The one lambasting American imperialism? Our cover of ‘Fuck the Police’? Or is it the one where we call on the people to seize the means of production?” Rage has got to be one of the most aggressively left-wing bands of the last 20 years, and not just primarily outside their music, like Bruce Springsteen or Avril Levigne—the songs themselves are about the evils of war profiteering and how cool Trotsky’s beard looked. (Fun Fact: “Political Views and Activism of Rage Against the Machine” has its own page on Wikipedia). So it’s kind of funny that a Mr. Burns-level arch-Randian conservative liked their music so much. My theory: he’s missing the irony. Like in ‘Bulls on Parade’ when they sing about “Weapons not food, not homes, not shoes…I walk the corner to the rubble that used to be a library” maybe he just thinks all that sounds like a good idea.
As the campaign puts more scrutiny on Mr. Ryan, we’re going to find out about more of the things he didn’t fully understand. Here are my predictions of the harsh revelations he’s about to receive in the near future:
- Jefferson Starship was not a real starship.
- Even though they were both played by the same actor, Han Solo and Indiana Jones are, in fact, different characters.
- Maize is corn.
- None of the people in The Crucible were actually witches.
- ‘Ferris Bueller’ is not Matthew Broderick’s name in real life.
- “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is only a saying—you can’t just replace Medicare with apples.
- ‘Rosebud’ was Kane’s sled, a symbol of his lost youth and innocence, not the name of a snowglobe company he tried but failed to acquire during his rise to power.
- Even though it has ‘America’ in the name, we don’t actually own South America
- The Eric Clapton song “Cocaine” was about drug use.
- Cats are not always girls and dogs are not always boys.
- Nabokov’s Lolita was not primarily a tribute to the motor lodges of the early 1950’s.
- Crocodiles and alligators are different species. The resulting mix-up during the summer he worked at that zoo was his fault.
- The music of Public Enemy is not about the supremacy of supply-side economics.