Julia begins her interaction with the welfare state as a little tot through the pre-kindergarten program Head Start. She then proceeds through all of life’s important phases, not Shakespeare’s progression from “mewling and puking” infant to “second childishness and mere oblivion,” but the Health and Human Services and Education Department version: a Pell grant (age 18), surgery on insurance coverage guaranteed by Obamacare (22), a job where she can sue her employers for more pay thanks to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act (23), free contraception (27), a Small Business Administration loan (42) and, finally, Medicare (65) and Social Security (67). (In a sci-fi touch, these entitlements are presumed blissfully unchanged sometime off in the 2070s.)
She can sue her employers for more pay, or get a Small Business Administration loan? THAT IS EVEN WORSE THAN FREE CONTRACEPTION! Christ, Julia, when will you stop being such a giant whore?
Let us hear some more of Rich Lowry’s thoughts on women and their relationship to the state.
No doubt, the creators of Julia — imagine a dour and featureless version of Dora the Explorer who grows old through the years — weren’t seeking to make a major philosophical statement. But they inadvertently captured something important about the progressive vision.
Julia’s central relationship is to the state. It is her educator, banker, health care provider, venture capitalist and retirement fund. And she is, fundamentally, a taker. Every benefit she gets is cut-rate or free. She apparently doesn’t worry about paying taxes. It doesn’t enter her mind that the programs supporting her might add to the debt or might have unintended consequences.
Got it. No more universal education, because here in the Gilded Age education is only for wealthy boys; the rest of you can go be chimney sweeps (or scullery maids if you are a girl). And small business can go fuck itself because small business is for suckers. Social Security? Who does Julia think she is, the Queen of England? Get thee to the workhouse, Julia, if that even is your real name.
Rich Lowry’s America sounds awesome, and we should all work very hard to take the country back to the 1890s, when things were fly. But we are wondering if Rich Lowry was also responsible for the Mitt Romney ad whose main thrust was “our guy is sour and boring,” because this seems kind of equally counterproductive, and if we were just about any woman reading Lowry’s scathing takedown of Barack Obama’s “creepy” “taker” Julia, we probably would think surgery and Head Start and Pell grants and SBA loans and Social Security were nice things, which we are for, and probably couldn’t wrap our silly little brains around the part where Head Start is Tyranny, probably because it’s fucking moronic. [ColumbiaTribune]