Friday, October 07, 2005

I'm So Bored With The USA

Well, actually I'm not, not yet anyway. However, because I'm a guest in this country (and because my work colleagues, despite being completely stereotypical American corpo types, have been sound so far) I have no intention of criticising what I see as being odd, daft or just plain wrong in front of them. But that won't stop me doing it here.

Book shops here are just a bit strange. I mean, they have all the titles you'd expect to see in a Waterstones or Easons back home but they also have a whole pile of frankly odd and/or disturbing book titles, particularly in the Politics sections. Book titles all seem to sound the same after a while, in a way. One that was prominently displayed in the shop I was in was How to Talk to a Liberal (If You Must). Another was Millionaire Republican : Why Rich Republicans Get Rich--and How You Can Too!. Do you see what I mean?

Anyway I was chuckling away to myself at all this, in an admittedly condescending way, when I came across Help! Mom! There are Liberals Under My Bed!. I thought this was another jokey book, the sort of thing that seems to pass for satire here. (Although considering satire in Ireland was once considered to be Don't Feed the Gondolas and the writing of that fat prick Brendan O'Connor, I probably have no right to judge). But it isn't.

This book is supposed to be for children or, more correctly, a book parents can use to teach their children the evils of Liberalism or the benefits of conservatism or whatever the fuck. Maybe I shouldn't take it seriously but it nagged at me. The gist of it is that Tommy and Lou, a pair of all-American kids trying to live the dream, open a lemonade shop, only to be thwarted by those damn Liberals who take down their picture of Jesus and insist that they sell broccoli with their lemonade. This is a book for kids who have barely learned to read. I mean, what kind of soulless bastard do you have to be?

I thought political indoctrination was reserved for the Nazis or Soviet Russia. And no one scream "moral equivalence" at me!
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