OK, maybe not my dad. My dad's not so bad. But maybe my granddad, because seriously, I bet Joe Barton's kids live like fricking kings.
I didn't do a lot of egregiously bad isht when I was a kid, but I did get in a heap of trouble when I was 18 for throwing a party while my parents were out of town, after having been explicitly instructed not to. The party was a real rager -- 50-something people, underage drinking, smoking, people running around naked in the backyard, a true suburban Columbus classic -- but it wasn't the party itself my parents were mad about. Hell, I cleaned up so well afterward that they didn't even find out about it until nearly a week after they'd gotten back. What they were mad about was that I'd lied about it, and lying being about the worst thing you could do in my family, they brought the hammer down on me: Lost the use of my car for the rest of the school year, grounded anytime I came home from UGA, probably forfeited my monthly allowance somewhere along the line. About the most severe punishment I got for anything I did as a teenager, now that I think about it.
If Joe Barton had been my granddad, though, he would've bitched my parents out and apologized on their behalf for being so mean to me.
Your eyes/ears do not deceive you -- Barton apologized to BP for mean nasty Obama making them pay for the damage they'd inflicted upon the Gulf coast. And while he claimed to be speaking only for himself and not the Republican Party, he wasn't the only one: The Republican Study Committee -- a caucus that comprises nearly two-thirds of the GOP's current House membership -- echoed Barton's sentiment that BP being instructed to set up a $20-billion escrow account to pay spill-related claims amounted to a "Chicago-style shakedown." All of the usual talk-radio suspects -- Limbaugh, Hannity, Oliver North -- are using suspiciously identical "slush fund" rhetoric to criticize the account. Tea Party hero Rand Paul, of course, said it was "un-American" for Obama to criticize BP at all.
Look, everyone has the right to criticize Obama (or any other president) to their hearts' content, but how craven do you have to be to plant your nose in BP's anus so that you can trash-talk him? Are they so confident in their ability to retake Congress this fall that they figure they can afford to throw a pity party for the most despised corporation in the country? Or as one of the few entities in America whose approval ratings are almost as low as BP's, is this their idea of "climbing down into the crevasse"?
I have no idea. All I know is, the next time I get stopped for speeding, I hope I've got Joe Barton in the car with me to wring an apology out of the cop for pulling me over.
(Yeah, the political stuff's back too, dorks. Drink it in.)