Monday, April 9, 2007


Here on The Beach, nothing says "Love [Only] Thy [Next-Door] Neighbor" more than a couple rounds of Class War!™. And where better to play out the folly than on the pages of The Standard-Times (née New Bedford Standard-Times).
It all started innocently enough, as these illusions often do, in a sleepy little hamlet. The hamlet in question is Marion MA, a perfectly idyllic Historical Reenactment of 1923 Marion, Mass. The Directors of this particular Living History Museum are hesitant about allowing one of them new-fangled "Soda Fountains." After all, why would anyone want a Dunkin' Donuts or a Subway sandwich shop in a perfect replica of an early-20th century industrialists' Summer holiday spot? The concept is ludicrous and anachronistic. Much like the idea of bitching about snobs.
Like the S-T "opinion columnists" do. They're in full cat-fight mode against, it seems, a couple of talented historical recreation performance artists trying to deliver their repro from annoying neon and non-free-trade coffee. In the olde-tyme classic newspaper style of "Let's You and Him Fight," otherwise rational
Editor Bob Unger and questionably adequate columner Jack Spillane and newsguy Brian Fraga have hopped on the pander cart and flung their far-fetched salvos at them rich.
If I may digress briefly: There are people who are perceived by others as "snobs." Or "slobs." Neither label is accurate, but in some cases may be appropriate. Unfortunately, those who judge also make up their own definitions. As in high school, "Jocks" and "Heads" and "Preps" (or whatever) define their camps in different terms. To do so does not level the battle field. That they battle thus for some apperceived supremacy shows how unwilling either side is to truly come to accord. And how far each has refused to evolve.
Now, why would a newspaper editor choose to play Class War!™ and take a side? Maybe he learned from the recent local "ILLEGALS!" nonsense. In that episode, Newspaper took the high ground and reported stories from all over the recent seizure of 361 workers at a government contractor sweatshop. Radio just allowed every racist xenophobic uneducable in the area to loudly and unsophisticatedly air his palaver, unedited and unchallenged. (Which is what talk radio is supposed to do, apparently.) Newspaper counters with snarky attacks amounting to about what I just wrote in the last two sentences, including parenthetical.
So now, with the fast food in Marion story, Newspaper has found a way to pander. Pander to advertisers whose presence they defend and insist upon. And most importantly, pander to the angry white guys they were making fun of last month. Because those are the guys who love Class War!™ The ones who hate "them lazy sponging-off-us poor" AND "them lazy running-everything-themselves rich." To put it simplistically (as they only understand clear black-and-white): On one hand, they can hate the rich, and then on the other, they can hate the poor. Which means, as members of either side ideologically, yes, they can hate themselves.
Twice as often.
No wonder The Beach is such a miserable place.


Dr. Momentum said...

Hating the rich and hating the poor?

Now that's what we call balanced reporting!

ThirdMate said...

tee hee

ThirdMate said...

That was some fey. What I meant to say was something about the ever-diminishing middle class, but I always giggle when I encounter knuckledragonomics.