NPR reporter Ari Shapiro interviewed Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) yesterday afternoon on All Things Considered. Collins had recently announced she would not support D. Trump, Our National Orange-utan, in the presidential election.
Collins told Shapiro Trump’s mockery of that disabled New York Times reporter back in November, his claim that a Mexican judge would be prejudiced against him, and his icy cold dismissal of those grieving Muslim parents who spoke at the Democratic National Convention last month were a sufficient triad of nauseating faux pas to turn her off to the barely simian candidate.
Verbally slapping the parents of a dead US soldier, Collins said, was the real deal-breaker for her. “We have Donald Trump showing absolutely no empathy or compassion at all for the grieving parents of a fallen soldier and instead attacking them and attacking their religion,” she explained.
Now, Ari Shapiro is a good-boy reporter, one who will forever maintain the general listening public is oh-so-smart and sophisticated when it comes to politics. This, of course, flies in the face of all available evidence. Whenever he gets the chance, he’ll toss in some buttery statement reminding NPR-ites that they are the crème de la crème of this holy land’s mass media audience. They may well be, considering NPR listeners tend to be college graduates and book readers while, for example, Fox News viewers have a tough enough time reading the instructions on a twist-off beer bottle cap. Nevertheless, being hailed as the valedictorians of the American body politic is akin to being recognized as the top mathematician among D. Trump’s Miss Universe contestants.
You Flatter Us, Ari
You could almost hear Shapiro polishing an apple on his sleeve as Collins referred to those attributes of human decency as prerequisites to occupy the O. Office. When she paused for a breath, he jumped in and said, “It’s interesting you would use the words ’empathy,’ ‘compassion.’ I think many people would choose who they want to be president based more on policy positions than on temperament and disposition.”
Honestly, Ari baby? You really believe Murricans sit down and pore over the candidates’ position papers and compile checklists of where the candidates stand on the various foreign policy and domestic issues of the day?
I’m going to take a wild stab and suggest the Trump supporter who can confidently recite the hair-man’s stances on NSA surveillance, the lifting of the Cuban travel embargo, or the efficacy of drone strikes on ISIS targets in the Middle East is a rare bird indeed. More to the point, the number of Trump backers who can spell the word surveillance is surely less than the total who believe Barack Obama was born here in the good ol’ USA and worships the one and only true son of god.
It’s doubtful many people sit around the coffee table discussing Rousseau’s Social Contract no matter whom they cheer for this political season. OTOH, it’s a sure bet next to none of America’s Burst Appendix [h/t Samantha Bee] fans would even know who that French girly-boy was.
No, Ari, people in this nation are all about temperament and disposition when it comes to whom they’ll tab as their next leader. Trump draws human flies to his rallies because, by temperament and disposition, he appeals to them on the most visceral level. He’s mean, aggressive, self-centered, ignorant, insensitive, and arrogant. That’s why the sons and daughters of bitches love him — they are, too!
Don’t think the Dems necessarily are policy wonks either. The party-ists of FDR and JFK dig Hillary primarily because she’s a tough woman. They do their best to ignore her decades-long love affair with the Goldman Sachs boys and her itchy trigger finger. Hell, I have to remind myself of those less-than-stellar stances of hers. I choose instead to see her bold smile, her confidence, her resilience, and only occasionally try to justify my vote for her because she’s a big Planned Parenthood backer.
Personal to Ari Shapiro — and for that matter all national political correspondents: Americans vote with their guts, not their brains.
Who’da thunk it? Porn aficionados — and, I have to suppose, aficionadas — become very, y’know, aroused when their fave superheroes hit the big screen. This spring and summer alone, the likes of Captain America, X-Men, the Suicide Squad, Doctor Strange, and Max Steel have flown, zipped, zapped, powed, scrummed, and smashed their way to justice and revenge in the multiplex nearest you. Heck, even Batman and Superman have faced off against each other in some sort of grudge match between this holy land’s top socially awkward muscle heads.
And wouldn’t you know it, our nation’s superhero audiences have turned to the internet in hopes of viewing their fave justice dispenser bang his (or her) way to sexual bliss. Pornhub (not my personal choice for erotica but I’ve heard of it — and so have you; don’t lie!) actually tracked how many people search for superhero-themed smut. And, natch, whenever a new superhero movie comes out, the search numbers for that particular character’s appearances in porn spike dramatically.
Here’s Pornhub’s blog, Pornhub Insights (yeah, such a thing exists), on the phenomenon:
The most recent super hero movie to hit theaters on August 5th was Suicide Squad. Our friends at Cinema Blend asked us if the release had any effect on Pornhub searches. After Suicide Squad broke many opening weekend records, we soon discovered that it also resulted in a 1072% search increase on Pornhub.
The blog even provides charts illustrating Murricans’ quests for super solitary entertainment. Peep this:
What shocks me about this is the apparent fact that the American public would prefer to scope Superman bonking than to eyeball Batman doing the deed. I wouldn’t have figured that, considering Batman’s a more mysterious, brooding cat, seemingly more naturally sexy. Shows what I know.
Anyway, I wonder if there are any topics more American than superheroes and porn. Throw in sports and guns and you’ve pretty much exhausted the list of most beloved national pastimes.
Saw a bumper sticker reading “Police Lives Matter” on a car in the Kroger Theme Park lot yesterday afternoon.
It annoyed me.
Don’t these people get that police lives matter hugely in this nation? Whenever a cop is killed TV news readers and similar entertainers fall all over themselves trying to out-grieve each other. Not that that’s a bad thing. Killing a cop is a certain degree more rotten than simply killing a civilian. The cop killer has made an attack on society. He’s chipping away at our sense of safety. Admittedly, that sense is false but, jeez, it helps a lot of us get to sleep at night.
And don’t think that Americans who suffer under racist, brutal policing are running around carrying sparklers and offering toasts to guys who kill cops. They know that in an effort to catch the killer, the cops are going to turn their neighborhoods upside down, cuff around a few hundred innocent passersby, and drag more than a few unlucky souls down to whatever extracurricular torture facility they’ve set up nearby. And, BTW, scads of cops do these things just for the fun of it in addition to trying to smoke out the killer.
The federal government goes so far as to call for the death penalty for killing a cop if the killer is involved in an ongoing criminal enterprise like a gang or the Mob. And no tough guy pol is ever going to elicit boos by calling for the death penalty in every state for killing a cop.
When a cop is killed, the dead guy’s brethren come from all over the nation to march in his funeral. There’s a parade, for chrissakes, with specially designated flag-carriers, honorary pallbearers, mayors, governors, senators, and even, sometimes, presidents joining in the cortege.
No cop killing goes unnoticed. Police lives matter. They always do.
Ergo there’s no need to call for their lives to matter via bumper sticker. When you paste one of them on your car, you’re just giving the digit to an enormous bunch of poor suckers whose lives really don’t matter.