Every state in the union has a neighboring state they both mock and look down on. Here in the Gret Stet of Louisiana, we're glad that Mississippi exists, otherwise we'd have to make it up. Both states tend to be at the bottom of lists you want to be on top of and at the top of lists you don't even want to be on at all. Oddly, both states have conservative Republican Governors with Presidential ambitions. That brings me to this week's "honoree" Haley Barbour.
In many ways this is a lifetime "achievement" award. Barbour has been a malaka for decades. He was close to the Bushes, father and son. He's a former RNC Chairman and big shot lobbyist who pretends to be a good ole boy. In short he's a complete phony, which is what malakatude is all about; at least this week. Barbour is also coyly flirting with running for President. Just what we need: another Southern Gooper in the White House.Yikes. Sheesh.
In the last week, the Barbour of Pascagoula (my favorite Magnolia state town name) has had a bout of foot in mouth disease as far as I'm concerned. And my voice is all that matters when it comes to the malaka of the week. I do, however, enjoy getting suggestions; the world is malakatudinous.
Where the hell was I? Oh yeah, the quotable Haley Barbour. He's been sparring with all sorts of people of late. Here's a snippet from an AP story about his wee kerfuffle with Chairman Mouth of the RNC:
Race and "fat rednecks" and Republicans.
First there's national Republican Party chairman Michael Steele, who has come under criticism for his leadership. Steele says he thinks he's being held to a higher standard because he's black.
Then there's a former GOP chairman, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour. He disagrees with Steele's assessment. Barbour says that's like saying, "I think I'm held to the higher standard because I'm a fat redneck with an accent like this."
Gee, now I wish I hadn't called Bob McDonnell a cracker the other day. It makes it harder for me to bash Barbour for being a rich fat cat lobbyist who plays at redneckery and good ole boydom. Oops, I guess I just bashed for him it. Oh well, I never claimed to be consistent...
Governor Barbour was just getting warmed up. In the same CNN appearance, he said that the flap over Bob McDonnell's Confederate history month thingee was overblown and that the slavery issue "didn't amount to diddly." Why? Because that citadel of malakatude, the Mississippi ledge had passed a similar resolution. Uh, Haley if you're running for President you have to win some non-Southern states and the myth of the lost cause doesn't (pronounced dudn't in the deep South) amount to diddly in much of the country. I suspect that there aren't a lot of chapters of the Sons of the Confederacy in the battleground states of the Midwest.
Finally, the Guvnuh got on his hind legs at the SRLC in New Orleans and made bogus and overblown claims about the glories of his state's recovery from Hurricane Katrina. He went on to called President Obama's policies a "man made disaster." Not a bad phrase but some of us would call Obama the guy who won the 2008 election with 53% of the vote and not via the Supreme Court. The real man made disaster on the Gulf Coast was the Federal Flood of New Orleans, which was made worse by Haley's buddies Beavis and Turd Blossom:
"Candidly I want to say thank you to the federal government," he said. "The federal government gets a very bad rap about what happened after Katrina. The federal government was very generous to us after the storm and I want to say thank you for that."
They were generous to their political allies like Barbour and Trent Lott but there are a lot of folks in this region who vehemently disagree with the Mississippi Malaka. I have a funny feeling that the Governor won't be thanking the Obama administration for its share of the stimulus money. Ingratitude is another mark of malakatude.
It's hard to imagine *any* Governor of Mississippi winning the Presidency. I know one thing for sure: Haley would make the executive mansion the Whiter House. I suspect his flirtation with running for the GOP nomination is another exercise in both vanity and malakatude. Barbour would, however, do better than Sister Sarah whose percentage of the popular vote would be in Landon, Goldwater or McGovern territory.