The Kitchen Stink
The Kitchen Stink
I suppose if Barak Obama rips into negative campaigning, the press will call it the “whole tool box,”or say he’s throwing “the book” at Hillary.
But Hillary is the one generating a negative campaign, not Obama, so the strategy has been dubbed, “the kitchen sink.”
My kitchen sink is stainless steel. We use it all the time.
Here’s the thing.
We don’t throw it.
Throwing the kitchen sink ruins it. You have to tear it out. It leaves a gaping, jagged ugly hole in the kitchen. You need to replace it, quickly, or the family feels harassed.
When my mother would get particularly annoyed she would sometimes stand over the kitchen sink and say, “Damn, Hell, Spit!” Then she’d wash her hands, and go on with the day.
There are passions in any family, talking, times of silence.
One childhood friend, who lives in a huge estate, a mansion by any standards, finds her family gathers to talk, not in the living room, library, or parlor so much as around the kitchen sink.
So what about this New Politics of Civility?
Can we remain good natured and on point when spatulas, iron frying pans, honey pots, glass goblets, plates, knives, eggs, tea pots, forks, carrot peelers, turkey basters, butter knives, blender knives, a red telephone, a war, NAFTA, you name it — are flying through the air —
“How can a feminist NOT support Hillary?” people ask me.
It’s funny if you think about it.
The Anglo woman of privilege says of Barak Obama, you know — that tall black man raised in humble circumstances in a racist culture who is standing on an open platform in front of thirty thousand people in a forum where the best security in the world is basically neutralized by the situation — she says he isn’t tough enough to be president?
The red phone corn prongs.
The former First Lady who claims her husband’s presidency as the executive experience that prepares her to answer the late night emergency line at the White House cherry picks her husband’s “experience” taking credit for what is politically expedient. The phone turns out to be white, not red. She gets credit, but avoids responsibility.
The Iraqi iron skillet.
Never mind Bill Clinton dropped more tons of bombs in Iraq than the first Bush did. Never mind that Hillary voted to authorize the second Bush president to invade Iraq. Never mind 8 years of Clinton sponsored sanctions against Iraq killed a half million Iraqi children, and decimated the Iraqi infrastructure before Bush the Second got started.
The real estate crystal goblet.
The lawyer, who just barely got off in Savings and Loans scandals that caused thousands of people to lose their life savings, accuses Obama of getting a good deal on his house in Chicago.
The flaky friends rolling pin.
The former First Lady whose husband pardoned 149 convicted prisoners, most of them during his last days in office (a governor, a half brother, a cabinet member’s son, a CIA chief, and at least one major fund raiser, a former HUD secretary) accuses Obama of having a flaky associate in Chicago.
The NAFTA carving fork.
Hillary positions herself as champion of the working class assuming we will forget Bill Clinton signed NAFTA, fought for it —and then accuses her opponent’s adviser of telling Canada Obama’s anit-NAFTA stance is “just political rhetoric?”
The God and gravy swift boat.
Hillary says “as far as she knows” Obama isn’t a Muslim after her campaign or someone who supports her leaks an odd photo of him taken in Africa, in ceremonial Somali elder dress. She says she “sees no reason not to take him at his word.” This comment stinks any way you interpret it.
The Caucus stew pot.
Is the Clinton campaign going to file suit against the Party over the Texas Caucuses? Our local Channel 36 last night ran a story in which Clinton supporters said Obama precinct captains were told to be aggressive. We were, in fact, told to be friendly, fair, to follow the rules and to defuse arguments because these were our neighbors. We were even told to bring water and snacks because people might be hungry. CNN today is running stories about chaotic Texas caucuses, one story even said the process was new. It’s not. We’ve had caucuses for decades here. What’s new is the turnout. In my small precinct in the Zilker Neighborhood in Austin, we had 200 people sign in. The previously elected Precinct Chairman said last time three people showed up.
The politics-as-usual sieve.
What’s with the negative campaigning? Simple. She had to do it because she was losing.
Well, she’s still losing AND there’s a jagged hole in the kitchen, making it difficult for everyone to function.
Ok, and yes, I got some dirty looks from women my age at our caucus — but honestly, I’m tired of a politics of division, secrecy, and corporate money, and I think the kitchen sink, the book, the tool box should be used for the common good and not be weaponized.
©Susan Bright 2008
Susan Bright is the author of nineteen books of poetry. She is the editor of Plain View Press which since 1975 has published one-hundred-and-fifty books. Her work as a poet, publisher, activist and educator has taken her all over the United States and abroad. Her most recent book, The Layers of Our Seeing, is a collection of poetry, photographs and essays about peace done in collaboration with photographer Alan Pogue and Middle Eastern journalist, Muna Hamzeh.
*photo posted by Bratten Thompson on the zilker elist, 03/05/08, of the Caucus for Precinct 332 in South Austin
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