Thursday, December 06, 2012

General Jan, Reporting From the Front

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer goes to war

Jon Stewart had a segment last night called "Please Tell Me This Is Rock Bottom," based on the bizarre vote by Senate Republicans to block ratification of a United Nations treaty that would basically bring U.N. members up to the long-established standards of the United States on protecting people with disabilities. The Republicans said that the U.N. treaty was an example of socialism, and ratifying it would be a direct threat to Americans who home-school their children.

Well, we have gotta hit rock bottom eventually in bat-shit-crazy Republican politics, but that day has not yet arrived.

Witness the apparition yesterday of Arizona  Governor Jan Brewer, reported AWOL from the state all this week after last week 1. hitting a reporter whose question she did not like; 2. hearing that she was not legally clear to run for another term in 2014 and 3. Being dissed when only two governors turned up to hear her speak at the Western Governors Association conference on the weekend.

To the mattresses she went.

Where's Jan? That was the question when she disappeared without explanation other than a vague comment from an aide that she was on "official state business." Jokes, of course, ensued. Was she  hiking the proverbial Appalachian Trail? Holed up with Sheriff Joe Arpaio checking IDs at the border crossing at Nogales? Naturally, someone noted the fact that although the governor was missing, no one had offered a reward for her safe return.

Well, not to worry! She was in Afghanistan! Reporting from the front! On state business! You know, a person with absolutely no foreign affairs knowledge or previous apparent interest had gone to Afghanistan, on state business, to report back to us bumpkins on the progress of the war and, well, also to get her picture taken with tanks and soldiers, and to wear that swell combat uniform with her name on the pocket, like a soldier.

So there was General Jan on a camouflaged helicopter in Kabul, wearing a helmet (which is so much safer than that tin-foil hat she usually wears). She had gone to Afghanistan secretly, very hush-hush. You know, because the Taliban and al Queda, not to mention the Russians, are constantly monitoring the movements of somebody like Jan Brewer.
General Jan had lots to say in a press conference heralding her now-no-longer secret visit to the Front. Here is one gem: “You know, I was so happy and so honored to be able to come, I don’t think the reality really set in with me until I got there. Then, I realized that it was the real deal, you know. We’re flying in helicopters, we have guns, guns hanging out the windows.”

Speaking by telephone to the Tucson paper, she confided the remarkable observation that war is "unimaginable," and added: "As we sit over there on the mainland and see and hear everything going on, it's really different over here."

Hark! Do I hear echoes of Henvy V's St. Chrispen's Day speech in the words thus spake by Gen. Brewer: "It's really different over here?"

Back here on the "mainland," the media, all sense of journalistic hilarity left hanging out the window,  are reporting this stuff with absolutely straight faces.  You know, Politico had a piece last week speculating that Jan Brewer could be among the group of Republicans considering a run for the presidential nomination in 2016. I sincerely hope that some serious journalists start having some fun with this nutty story. Because hope springs eternal! I mean, Jan Brewer actually thinks she might be running for president and has even met recently with that red-haired old multi-billionaire who blew $150 million on losing GOP races, the beautiful Sheldon Edelson. Imagine Jan Brewer at the debates. Hell, that alone would be worth another $150 million of the gambling magnate's dough.

There is no more to say about this. Except to assure Jon Stewart that rock bottom might still be a long way down.

Here's a link to the Stewart segment on the vote on the U.N. treaty, incidentally.


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