Friday, November 11, 2011
Quote of the Day
"Is she going to endorse me?"
-- Herman Cain, when someone mentioned Anita Hill during a campaign stop in Michigan yesterday
This is the beauty of Cain -- and really the entire Republican philosophy these days. Cesca and I talk about this on the podcast this week but there's an obvious benefit to being almost sociopathically shameless: it makes you bulletproof. The sexual harassment allegations against Cain are something he can joke about because he's made the conscious decision not to accept them and to simply behave as if nothing happened and he's not in the middle of an embarrassing and potentially debilitating scandal. Whereas you, I, or anyone else with an ounce of shame would at the very least tread lightly given the reality of what was happening, Cain refuses to succumb to something as illusory as reality because he's so blinded by his own self-opinion that he believes he makes his own reality. And to some extent he's right: If he's got Fox News and talk radio to market his distinct worldview to the audience he's trying to reach, why let any contradicting "facts" get him down? The GOP base believes what Fox tells them, and again, that's Cain's audience. Nothing else matters -- therefore there's no need for him to sheepishly tip-toe as if he's a guy who's accused of being a serial sexual harasser because in his mind he's the victim, and Fox and talk radio confirm that narrative for the conservative faithful.
This is the sheer brilliance of the GOP propaganda machine. It's so relentlessly devoid of a sense of self-awareness -- it doesn't worry one bit about how horribly it lies and how easily those lies can be proven as such; it doesn't concern itself with things like blatant, almost unimaginable hypocrisy -- that it's impossible to put down. It's immune to anything thrown at it. To use a film reviewer's term, it's "critic proof" because, like movies that get that phrase attached to them, it doesn't care one bit about being good or fair or honest. It only cares about winning. It exists for no other reason.