Haley And Heartless

« March 2011 »


I saw an article recently that discusses Haley Barbour's "Google Problem". Unlike Rick Santorum's Google Problem, which is due to Dan Savage punking that homophobic prick with the power of the Internets, Barbour's problem is simpler. If you Google Haley Barbour, you see a lot of the stupid and racist shit he's done, he does, and he keeps doing.

Well, I certainly don't like Haley Barbour, and I certainly don't want him to become President, so I think it's time for me to become one more search result full of Barbour's most recent reprehensible actions, inactions, and statements. I like helping!

Keep in mind, because I have a very difficult time remembering it myself, that Haley Barbour is the governor of Mississippi. Apparently just making sure the state remains poor, racist, and stupid doesn't take a lot of work, because I rarely hear tales of him actually, you know. governing.

For example, Mississippi unveiled plans back in February to issue a vanity license plate design honoring Nathan Bedford Forrest, a Confederate general and a prominent leader of the early Ku Klux Klan. That is some serious yeehaw good ol' boy heritage bullshit right there. The Confederacy was wrong and lost. The Klan is one of America's great shames. But put them both together, and apparently you have Mississippi pride! Barbour's response?

"I don't go around denouncing people. That's not going to happen. I don't even denounce the news media. I know there's not a chance it'll become law."

So he won't say honoring a Klan leader is a bad idea because he doesn't think it'll happen. Maybe he can write a companion piece to Pawlenty's book, and call it "Agility To Dodge". As a bonus, it'll be the first time ever that the words "agility" and "Haley Barbour" appear within shouting distance of each other.

Stuff like this, plus back in December when he defended the racist White Citizens Councils, have given Haley Barbour a reputation as bit unreconstructed, as it were. And while being seriously racist has never been a disqualifying factor for the Presidency, it can't help your chances if it gets too widely known. So Barbour's been pushing back against the idea like a Montgomery riot cop. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"I remember Martin Luther King came to town, in '62. He spoke out at the old fairground and it was full of people, black and white". The town in question is where Barbour grew up, the incredibly appropriately named Yazoo City.

Well, apparently Haley Barbour had a dream, because the only time MLK was in Yazoo City was in '66, and only had private meetings with civil rights marchers. It's a discrepancy that you could conceivably work up a plausible explanation for, but to do so, you'd have to be comfortable giving Haley Barbour the benefit of the doubt on a civil rights issue. In other words, you'd have to be either stupid or willfully obtuse. Which explains why Politico did it.

Barbour's not just a fan of race war, though. He's a big fan of class war. Not economically, although I'm sure he's a fan of that as well. No, he's just a fan of waging a war against classiness. Which is why his staff members got in trouble last week for sending out a regular e-mail with jokes about how "Sittin' On The Dock Of The Bay" isn't a big hit in Japan right now, and a hoary Clinton-era chestnut about how Janet Reno is really a man.

The attention paid to the Japan joke led to Barbour's press secretary, Dan Turner, resigning, although he still lasted longer than Gilbert Gottfried did, and Gottfried was actually practicing his profession.

But the point stands. Haley Barbour's a prick, he hires pricks to work for him, and it's a bad idea to elect pricks to the presidency. We're still paying for the last two times we did that.