Saturday, June 19, 2010

REAL Men Don't do Washingtonspeak

Okay, day one. I can handle this.

No, I can't. I'm fucking terrified. Once I start watching I'm afraid I'll throw up, and once I throw up I won't be able to stop and it will only be a matter of time until I see Ann Coulter and Glenn Beck floating by on my own vomit, struggling to stay afloat on a worn-out copy of Atlas Shrugged.

I'm going now. Pray for me. Or don't, because I know my SSB (Scandinavian Socialist Boyfriend ™)isn't because he's all atheist and shit. It's cool, man. Whatever floats your a sea of vomit.

Here's something to keep you busy until I get back. Stories like this are a large part of what inspired me to take on this miniproject:

Okay, I'm back. I'm back and I'm exhausted. On June 18th (Friday), I watched The O'Reilly Factor and parts of Hannity. I would have watched more--I keep my promises--but my parents were all "who watches this crap" so I turned it off. Dear reader, I apologize, but I was extremely grateful for the return of my sanity.

So, O'Reilly. O'Reilly on Father's Day Weekend is O'Reilly with an extra dose of condescension and patriarchal attitudes. When I tuned in, he had equated the father with "the patriot"--a character whom, though he (obviously a he) was not defined in this particular episode is, we assume, pro-America and likely also a conservative who ascribes to Judeo-Christian values. This is the American way of life to which O'Reilly refers in the clip above. The highest calling of the father, said O'Reilly in a tone that implied nothing less than sacred admiration, is to protect and take care of his family. Okay, so I didn't expect O'Reilly to be a feminist or anything, but we're still talking about this? Really? I understand where he's coming from because it's true that women still feel unsafe alone at night and all that, but maybe if these attitudes weren't constantly perpetuated, women would feel safe. They'd be safe. And that, my friends, is patriarchy in action. This fetishization of male power and dominance is not safe for couples who want equality in relationships. If women are said to be weak, women are treated as though they are weak.

Photo © istockphoto/Serdar Yagci

                                                                Poster © Austin Cline

The next topic O'Reilly covered that caught my eye--ears?--was soccer. Or, more specifically, Glenn Beck's view of soccer. He hates soccer, and wants us to know that he hates it "being shoved down his throat" whenever he goes into a bar. Hmm, why does that sound familiar?

Oh,THIS. and also, this. I'm not sure why that meme is so popular among conservatives--though I've considered both its connotations of force-feeding and deep-throating--but Beck went on to say that soccer is being "shoved down [his] throat. It's like Universal Healthcare--the rest of the world can have it, we don't want it!"

Speak for yourself, Glenn.

And apparently soccer is almost as bad as curling, which is so bad, according to Beck, that little girls can beat professionals. Little girls, he said. Not children. I'll let that one speak for itself.

O'Reilly ended his broadcast with a segment called "Pinhead or Patriot" (maybe it's the other way around? I'll get it right next time!), in which he targeted popular reality show The Jersey Shore's character Snooki and Congressman Barney Frank (not affiliated with The Jersey Shore. But really, how awesome would that be?). O'Reilly didn't even know who Snooki was (one of the show's guests nominated her for pinhead), but he immediately condemned her for sending a bad message to America's young women. "She's got a hair pouf," said the female guest, making vague hand motions over her head. As a picture of Snooki came up on the screen, O'Reilly chuckled and said that she was poofing out in other places, too. After confirming that she was a reality show cast member, said female guest clutched her manicured hands and said, "well, I don't know how real she is...she's, I hate to say it, trampy."

So, you're calling her a slut. And her body is public property on which you can comment. Glad we got that straight.

Finally, O'Reilly nominated Barney Frank as pinhead due to his stated desire for a balance with taxes--words which O'Reilly took to mean as the state of equal amounts of money going into the government as are going into the private sector. And that, of course, is...wait for it...SOCIALISM!

Don't go there, Barney, said O'Reilly. This is a "capitalist-y country."

Coming up: Friday's episode of Hannity--well, parts of it--and Saturday's edition of Huckabee featuring the surprisingly conservative Raquel Welch! Bonus: Glenn Beck repeat on how art imitates life!

The Fox News Performance Art Collective

January. 2010
My Scandinavian Socialist Boyfriend ™ is stateside for a mere four hours before I introduce him to the joys of channel flipping. I'm skipping merrily upwards into the double digits when he asks me to reverse. We park at Fox News and spend several minutes listening to some long-forgotten O'Reilly rant. He (Boyfriend, not Papa Bear) turns to me and states affirmatively, "This is like the Daily Show. It's a joke."

Boyfriend actually wasn't too far off. Fox is about as genuinely populist as Boss Tweed.

Fox News is an echo chamber which, as I will demonstrate, both feeds off of and contributes to the kyriarchy (more on that word choice later), contributing to the intersectional issues of sexism, heterosexism, racism, ableism, and classism. It's all stirred to a boil with a healthy dose of misogyny and jingoism!

June. 2010
I'm committing myself to a week of basking in the cray-cray rays. Why? This shit is FASCINATING to me. I'm a virgin Fox viewer (ok, we hooked up once and I'll admit to sexting) and an unapologetic feminist. Let's see where this goes.