ChoppinBroccoli (921 posts) Sat Jan-15-11 11:45 PM
Original message My Wife Was Bombarded With Faux News Talking Points Yesterday
Most people who are familiar with me know that I have a father-in-law who is so cravenly Republican that it makes him almost impossible to speak to most of the time. He never allows the TV channel to leave Faux News when he's at home, and when he does go places, he turns on right-wing hate radio for the trip. He amasses right-wing books, which is interesting, considering the fact that he doesn't ever read them. He just accumulates them. Most of the time, he's OK because he realizes that neither I nor my wife will engage him if he starts in on his right-wing rants, so he just steers clear of the topic. And most of the time he has nothing to say simply because he has managed to keep himself busy doing things out in the yard and/or around the house. But you can always tell when he's been cooped up inside all day watching Faux News, because he becomes a walking, talking repeater of talking points (and he's usually in a foul mood when he does it--he loves Faux News, but for some reason, whenever he watches it, it puts him in a bad mood).
Yesterday, my wife stopped by her parents' house to pick up our kids (they were spending the day with Grandma and Grandpa). From the moment she entered the door, she was getting peppered with talking points. Here are some of the more interesting moments she told me about (and bear in mind, these were all in a SINGLE visit of a little over an hour):
1. He asked her if she watched Obama's "pep rally" and then commented on how inappropriate it was. The words "pep rally" were just dripping with contempt. My wife told him she didn't watch it even though she did. This is the only way to defuse him. If you so much as try to counter his right-wing talking points, he'll snap and start shouting obscenities and usually storm out of the room.
2. He informed my wife that the suburb they live in is not having Kindergarten classes next year because they don't have any money (we have a child who will be entering Kindergarten in the fall, but in a different school district). This was apparently supposed to be some slam on the Democrats and their "mishandling" of the economy, but what he obviously failed to recognize was that their suburb's money problems were the direct result of bitter old people continuously voting down school levies because they don't want to pay a few more dimes in taxes. Not to mention the fact that all the public schools in this State are hurting because 8 solid years of Republican mismanagement have driven the economy right into the ditch. And when the Democratic Governor couldn't completely turn everything around in 4 years, the oh-so-wise voters went out and elected that buffoon Kasich to REALLY screw things up. Anyway, this comment led to the next comment.
3. He informed my wife that States can't declare bankruptcy. My wife is a bankruptcy attorney who works for the State. She knows everything there is to know about this subject. But he heard someone say something on talk radio, and all of a sudden he's an expert (and when my wife told him that only municipalities can declare bankruptcy, he replied, "That's right. Municipalities can," as if he were some kind of authority on the subject). He was worried because he heard something about some municipality declaring bankruptcy and screwing over all its municipal bondholders. He then said that all THEIR bonds were State bonds, and States can't declare bankruptcy. Great, so why are you worried about it?
4. He made the very cryptic statement, "I hope we don't all have to bail out California." When I heard my wife tell me this, I about hit the roof. Apparently he isn't aware that thanks to our wise and benevolent new Governor, we're ALREADY sending millions of dollars meant for Ohio to California simply because A-hole Kasich didn't want it. If he were thinking a little more clearly, he probably should be more worried about California having to bail out Ohio within the next 4 years.
5. He informed my wife that there would be no Social Security money left by the time we were going to be drawing from it. Ignoring the blatantly false talking point, my wife told him, "I wouldn't get Social Security anyway, because State employees get PERS." To which he replied, "Yeah, well they're trying to lump PERS in with Social Security." Whatever.
6. He referred to himself and my mother-in-law as "the working poor." Just a couple of points on that. A) They're not working. Both of them are retired and drawing healthy sums of money every month in retirement. B) They're not even CLOSE to poor. Between the two of them, they make pretty close to $150,000 per year JUST IN RETIREMENT. Then there's the fact that they have roughly half a million dollars tied up in investments (various bonds, CDs, etc.), and the fact that they just got a pretty healthy amount (probably another half-million) from an inheritance a few years ago. They own their home and have no significant bills of any kind. Does THAT sound poor to YOU? My wife and I probably have about one-tenth the financial wherewithal they have, and we don't even consider ourselves poor.
Yes, you can always tell when my father-in-law has been doing nothing but sitting around watching Faux News all day. And then my wife informed me, "Just wait until they start doing their taxes. Then you'll REALLY hear some crap." I'm sure it will be all about how unfairly they're being treated, having to pay taxes and all. And I'm also sure that I'm going to have to hear about how their taxes went up sharply (when I know for a fact that they didn't). It's getting to the point where it's hard to even have a civil conversation with him anymore. He hates me because I brainwashed his daughter and turned her against him, and he obviously has a very low opinion of my wife too, because in order to believe that I brainwashed her, he has to believe that she isn't smart enough to make up her own mind on the issues and just follows along with what I say. It all makes for a lot of tension, and it's the reason why we try to steer well clear of political conversations when he's around. But sometimes he gets a burr in his ass and is just spoilin' for a fight. This was apparently one of those times.