When I first signed up for a gym membership I didn't realize how valuable it would become. Not only do I stay solid and sexy like the people on TV, but I also gain political savvy. Running time typically occurs during "The Situation Room", during which time I park in front of the TV and revel in the pretentious intellect of CNN's pundits, liberal and conservative alike. Today, however, is a Saturday. Jim Cafferty has the day off, and I spent the most confounded miles of my life running endlessly towards a blabbering Rush Limbaugh, keynote speaker for CPAC. I nearly switched machines, preferring the boredom of a golf tournament to the hoots and hollers (in closed captioning, of course) of the most irritating kind of conservatives: young ones. But in a stroke of bipartisan sympathy I decided to hear the guy out.
Now, anyone who's ever heard Rush speak - political affiliation notwithstanding - can attest to his utter lack self-awareness and reservation. This guy gets riled up. So I was less than surprised when the usual rant turned into a liberal diatribe, particularly in the area of big government. Rush argues that liberals seek complete control in the government, under the guise of compassion. We have huge hearts, and that's why we need to raise taxes and take money from people's pockets and give it to those who, for whatever reasons, couldn't get it themselves and we tell them it's OK because they're useless and incapable of achievement anyway so we'll help them along and control what happens in their lives because they obviously can't and yay Welfare State!
As for conservatives, they're just misunderstood. They don't hate people; they love them! See the difference? They believe that people are capable of doing great things if we just let them and stop getting in their way. People make their own choices in life and some do better than others in this respect; so be it! It is a core value of capitalism, that sacred institution, that some will have better outcomes than others. Why punish the achievers? Congratulate them! If you choose to work hard then you'll reap what you sow and there's a pot of gold and a little leprechaun to bring you good fortune. But you have to be motivated to do it, and you have to choose to do it.
(Interesting "choice" of words, Mr. Limbaugh. Indeed.)
Rush wants people to make the right choices to better their lives. Rush wants Americans to stay true to the creed of elbow grease and keep on truckin'. Rush wants not to restore this country to its former glory, but to keep it glorious from the get-go. Rush also wants women to have lots of babies, because women work well under pressure and what doesn't kill you builds character and strength, and that's what we Americans are all about, yes? Yes! OH GOD, YES!
At this point the crowd begins to chant: "U-S-A! U-S-A!" I love it when large groups of people chant, because it demonstrates unity and inspiration and passion. I was so geeked. I even raised my fist to pump it triumphantly in the air with my fellow people-lovers, to the beat of my feet hitting the belt. U-S-A! Just then, like a siren alerting me to some imminent danger, the treadmill beeped and declared my workout over. I shook my head vigorously, then glanced back at the TV screen, blankly. The moment was lost, the reverie broken, and I returned to being just another lowly liberal who loves people in all the wrong ways.
I guess I'm OK with that.