Well, Samuel Wurzelbacher, aka Joe the Plumber, got his celebrity baptism by fire, rising to fame out of sheer obscurity in milliseconds and then having his star shot down by investigative journalists just as quickly.
Pandered to throughout the third presidential debate, Joe the Plumber as presented by John McCain, simply does not exist.
He is not a licensed plumber.
His name is not Joe.
He doesn't earn anything approaching the $250K mark that would make him eligible for Obama's higher tax burden.
Speaking of taxes, though, he sure does owe some.
He is not an Independent but a registered Republican.
Intended as a blue-collar hero, a plain-folk character to rope in working class America against Obama's tax plan, Joe the Plumber is an utter fraud.
And there are plenty of disturbing factoids about the actual guy who pretends to be Joe the Plumber that might lead an observer to wonder whether he is a plant of the McCain campaign, frinstance, the fact that he lived in both Arizona and Alaska and could be a relative of one Doug Wurzelbacher from Alaska, a competitive snow racer or whateverthehell sports they play in that state. (Hellooo First Dude of Alaska!)
Listening to Joe/Samuel play the part of insta-pundit on the news yesterday, a chill went up my spine. He hates the government. He thinks Social Security is a joke. He hates immigrants. He thinks the war in Iraq is a success, in fact, such a success that the experience of the American occupation and invasion of this country is really akin to being saved by Jesus.
Swear to G-d he made that comparison on national television after saying to the reporters, “I don’t know how many of you are Christians.”
With his shaved head and uneducated, extreme views, Samuel Wurzelbacher looks and sounds just a wee bit too like a neo-Nazi white supremacist.
And his "tap-dancing like Sammy Davis Jr." comment on yesterday's Today Show, referring to Barack Obama's explanation of his tax policy, was just a wee bit racist, don'tcha think?
More instructive than the investigative work being done by journalists, though, is the predictable and utterly disturbing reaction of the rabid right to the revelations about Joe aka Samuel Wurzelbacher.
Instead of owning up to the fact that Joe the Plumber is as real as the Quaker Oats Man, the rapid right has gone on the attack, charging that the LIBERAL MEDIA is out to destroy this decent common man.
If you are feeling especially masochistic, ya might wanna google around through the Internet and blogosphere and see what turns up. My fave: a rant by the sickly hateful Michelle Malkin on http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/, entitled, The Left Declares War on Joe the Plumber.
Malkin, whose writing has been singled out by media observers as irresponsible and inflammatory(she was recently cited, for instance, for fomenting anti-Arab sentiments) has some treasures to savor in this latest column.
Malkin does some fancy footwork of her own, conveniently sidestepping the fact that Joe the Plumber is a mythic invention, ie, a COMPLETE AND UTTER LIE. Instead, Malkin's spin is that "Obama-Biden simply can't tolerate an outspoken citizen successfully painting the Democratic ticket as socialist overlords."
But there's lots more where that came from and I urge every democratic, free-thinking American to spend some time visiting these sites.
They are extremely, unbelievably, flipping scary, presenting innuendo as fact, spreading hatred and fear, preying on the relative stupidity of their base, revealing nothing more than the moral dishonesty and sheer corruption of their leadership.
In the world ruled by the rabid right-wingers, truth-telling is not a value.
Facts are totally inconsequential.
The world of the rabid right wing is a dark, terrifying place. In an upcoming post, I will introduce readers to a really creepy blog called Moms4SarahPalin. Yesterday, I was completely shocked to discover a posting on that site that claims that no one yelled threats against Obama at a McCain/Palin rally. That's right, boys and girls. This, too, is a fabrication of the liberal media.
The operating principle of the rabid right wing world is that when the truth reveals a reality that is simply too ugly, simply deny the reality away.
And in case you think that Moms4SarahPalin is some kinda cyber-kaffee klatch for brainless if benevolent women, think again. It is administered by a conservative terror cell whose raison detre is not so much to promote the gospel of Sarah Palin as it is to bash Barack Obama.
Reading the hysterical ravings of such sites makes me ever more conscious of the fact that I do not occupy the same country -- or even universe -- as the leaders and followers of the rabid right.
My America is a very different place from theirs.
And while my America includes those who hold opposing views -- even these anti-truth, hate-mongering reactionaries -- their America is narrow and dangerous and not healthy for Democrats and other living things.