Reading my Facebook feed the other day, I came across news item that made me roll my eyes. It’s the sort of thing your wingnut uncle sends to your email account– a story about people using EBT cards to put one over on the hardworking Americans of the Heartland and living a life of luxury filled with Cadillacs, risotto and…Pandora bracelets! It was sort of typical wingnut mythology, but the detail about the Pandora bracelet made me giggle.
I think that’s why the arrow on my bullshit detector went flying off. Aside from it being a suspiciously weird detail, a Pandora bracelet is hardly some marker of wealth.
But these little fairy tales are touchstones to the wingnuts amongst us. I think the stories give them comfort. “Daddy, tell me that one about the secretly rich girl who ate steak and destroyed America with her EBT card.”
I think the stories resonate for two reasons: 1.) Hey, if everyone who’s using EBT cards is secretly rich, well, then there’s no need for a food program, right? No poor people to see here! No hungry children here! Move along! 2.) It’s taken as a given that every last wingnut is a hard-working schmo who goshdarnit worked for every dime they’ve got…not like those liberals who are just reclining on Corinthian leather sofas and eating veal while getting sexually serviced by some homosexual, probably. It’s Special Snowflake Syndrome writ large, and the “We’re super-good, not like those lazy, libertine moochers” mantra is pretty much religion to these folks.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to eat Osso Buco off the toned buttocks of a gay porn star. Hey, I’m a liberal. It’s what I do.
UPDATE: I told Scott I was jealous of flame-war-worthy beer discussions, so I was interested in starting a war myself. I have NO idea how this topic will achieve this. Perhaps we could all fight about who has the best EBT card fairy tale. My only rule is that steak be involved…somehow.