I miss the Soviet Union.
Without the Red Menace to push us and scare us -- without the dadblamed commerniss Russkies to goad us into transcending our inherent pettiness and whackjobbery to achieve greatness purely out of spite -- it's no wonder we can't get a damned thing done in this country nowadays.
In the 1960s, we had "dominoes" falling, commies lurking, nuclear war looming and college campuses overrun by Red-loving pinko freaks. In that most tumultuous of decades, national humiliation was just one cosmonautical feat of derring-do away.
Our response to all that psychic trauma was to send Americans to the moon and bring them safely home again.
The Soviet Union, however, fell apart in 1991. Damn.
NOW, THERE'S NOTHING -- no common enemy, at least -- to keep our all-American whackjobs on the reservation. In this country, somebody's always going to be looking for Reds to bait, and without a large, reliable foreign Red Menace supplier, homegrown paranoiacs are turning against their own government and president.
For example, this was the scene a reporter for The Advocate found in Baton Rouge, La., yesterday:
On the day after President Barack Obama asked the nation to back his planned revamp of the $2.4 trillion system that pays for health care, opponents and supporters squared off Thursday on the sidewalks surrounding the U.S. courthouse in downtown Baton Rouge.
Police officers kept the two groups — which police estimated to be about 125 people — apart as the sides shouted at one another.
The gathering was largely peaceful — police reported no arrests — but points made on health-care plans soon were overshadowed by arguments of whether the president is an American citizen.
Steven Walker of New Orleans, state director of Louisiana’s Organizing for America, said he wanted a handful of people to share their struggles caused by inadequate health-care insurance.
Obama’s plan would lower costs and free up options for people with insurance while giving people without insurance access to policies, said Walker, whose group is affiliated with the Democratic National Committee, which is promoting Obama’s agenda.
Walker said Obama’s plan would allow individuals greater choice.
“But this is a campaign of smear and fear,” Walker said pointing to an opposition sign that condemned the president as a communist.
“These people are anti-Obama,” he said.
A few feet down the sidewalk, on the other side of a cordon of police officers, Kurt Wagner, a Port Allen insurance sales manager, asked the crowd: “Is he rightfully the president?”
“No,” responded his listeners.
TO WHAT'S LEFT of the conservative base, President Obama not only is a "socialist," he's a Red pretender who isn't even American. Even amid the Great Clinton Freakout -- which at least had Whitewater, a high-level suicide and bimbo eruptions to hang its hat upon -- nobody for a minute questioned whether Bill was anything but an all-American, skirt-chasing, not-inhaling, draft-dodging pinko scalawag.
This won't do.
We need the Soviet Union back. We need a credible existential threat -- at least until al-Qaida proves it can take out midtown Manhattan -- to help us get over ourselves and get our rears in gear.
Otherwise, Allah only knows (Obama the Muslim made us all convert) how long we'll be letting the lunatics drive the agenda. Picture Toonces.