I love you, Michael Steele. For those who haven’t heard, the new RNC Chairman has made it his mission to create a new hip-hop image for the GOP. No, seriously. While there are plenty kinds of crazy flowing from the near powerless Republican Party right now, Steele’s is the best kind because it’s incredibly entertaining.
Obviously, creating a new GOP with hip-hop appeal is essentially an impossible task and not just because the party is devoid of any African Americans in prominent positions (other than Steele himself). As the brilliant Melissa Harris-Lacewell pointed out on THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW last week, hip-hop is largely about being authentic. Is there any profession that screams “inauthentic” like politician? Perhaps lawyer, but that’s it. Neither political party could ever brand itself as the party of hip-hop for that very reason. Nonetheless, I can’t wait to see how Michael Steele tries to accomplish this. It’s sure to be spectacular.
Melissa Harris-Lacewell had another insightful, and kinda geeky, quote when breaking down Steele’s election as RNC Chairman. It seems especially appropriate to share here given the banner for my blog. Here’s the quote:
“[The Republicans are] thinking Barack Obama is Superman, so what they needed to do was get some Kryptonite. Kryptonite comes from Superman’s own planet, so they went to “Planet Black Guy” and they said how do we get somebody from “Planet Black Guy” who can neutralize Barack Obama as [...] a unifier? This is their Barack Obama.”
Now as a huge comic geek myself, I’m going to take this analogy a bit further. I think Michael Steele may not be Kryptonite, but rather, Superman’s fellow Kryptonian, General Zod. The Republicans tore Zod out of his Phantom Zone prison, thinking the only way to beat Superman was with someone who was from his own planet and had all of the same powers. What they didn’t realize at the time was that Zod was batshit crazy. The Republican party has already lost control of their Zod, but unlike Superman, President Obama has no reason to try and stop Michael Steele because Steele is only going to help to destroy his own party.
Or, if you prefer an apt quote from the Batman universe, here’s one from Alfred Pennyworth (to Bruce Wayne) in THE DARK KNIGHT: “You crossed the line first, sir. You squeezed them, you hammered them to the point of desperation. And in their desperation they turned to a man they didn’t fully understand.”
Any bets on how long it takes before Michael Steele makes “Why so serious?” the new catchphrase of the GOP?