"Contrary to the rumors that you've heard," Obama told the Al Smith memorial crowd, "I was not born in a manger. I was actually born on Krypton and sent here by my father, Jor-el, to save the planet Earth."
He had my vote after the New York Review profile, and then his ability to think in more than one dimension in Dreams from my Father cemented me there-- but it's nice to have a shout out from the candidate to the guys down the comic book shop; see, it's getting the little things right in the joke, like the name of Superman's father, that showed attention to the sensitivity of fanboys.
Does this mean Eisner award winners invited to the White House, like the other literary prize winners and sports teams? You could do worse than Brian K. Vaughan, Paul Chadwick and a few others as part of a "kitchen cabinet". And while we're at it, why the implicit sneer at "comic book morality"? I thought I'd outgrown it, but after years of thought, reading and experience, I find myself returning. This "comic book morality", after all, proves out better for the world than the realpolitik of Kissinger and the other manicured sociopaths, or the opportunists and apologists for capitalism, or a fake Christianity so full of prejudice, xenophobia and tin-horn pharisees it hardly seems to deserve the name.
An ACORN organizer was telling me once that the United Way hates his organization. ACORN works on housing for the poor, you see, and that frequently puts them in conflict with real estate developers-- and a lot of United Way groups are dominated by local real estate interests. "Be good," Mark Twain tells us, "and you will be lonesome."
Now poor little ACORN, Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, has been plucked from obscurity to be demonized in the Republican Party's ongoing effort to defame and distort the record of every left to liberal do-gooder in the country.
Gawker has a handy little FAQ on the non-existent scandal. It's fairly simple. ACORN hires people at eight dollars an hour to register voters. ACORN is required by law to turn in every registration form they collect, even the bogus ones signed by Donald Duck or Mickey Mouse. No one, not even the Rovians, really believe ACORN is trying to empower cartoon characters who might (gasp) be predisposed to vote Democratic. Oh, those wicked community organizers...
But in spite of our compromised Justice Department, I don't think of this as an organized cabal against the poor. Republicans operate like the drunken knights who murdered Thomas Becket-- they work themselves into a patriotic frenzy over who the king wants eliminated, if only the king could say so, and they go to work, leaving their masters with plausible deniability . You can almost smell the sulfur surrounding these lies.