Rodeo announcer shocked to find audience less racist than he.

Someone thought this was a joke to tell in a public venue:

During a rootin’, tootin’ jamboree this weekend, the announcer made a joke about the First Lady being offered $50 to appear in National Geographic magazine. GET IT?!?!

But wait, there’s context. You see, jokester Ed Kutz was making a comparison between attractiveness of Mrs. Obama and potential future First Lady Ann Romney. Romney, he said, was offered $250,000 to appear in Playboy magazine (yeah, Playboy loves the 63-year-olds) whereas Obama, who possesses inferior attractiveness to Romney, was only offered a tiny, pathetic sum to appear in a magazine that often features pictures of animals.

As the commenters on Jezebel point out, the connection to National Geographic is more about naked pygmies than gorillas and chimps, but still. If you’re going to work a crowd into a froth by telling lame-ass jokes that amount to, “BECAUSE THEY’RE BLACK, GET IT?!”, there are subtler, more dog-whistle-ish ways to do it than by saying Michelle Obama is ugly. I guess you don’t have a problem with contributing to a culture that makes black girls feel like shit by telling them pretty=white, but your audience didn’t think it was quite so funny, now did they?

Now I’m gonna crawl back into my hole of allowing rumors of my death to germinate. I’m not quite dead yet; just no longer trying to hide my insanity.

Babies and Boobies: War of the Michelles

Irin Carmon rightly notes that conservative commentators will condemn with just about any proposal involving Michelle Obama. The latest controversy is the Obama administration’s recent efforts to encourage, promote and facilitate breastfeeding, especially Michelle Obama’s advocacy as part of her anti-obesity campaign. I just want to chime in because this is such a perfectly beautiful example of how, if rightwingers were true to the values they’re so happy to shove down our throats, they would act very differently.

One of the recent changes is that the IRS has classified breast pumps and other lactation-related supplies as medical supplies, which means families may use their HSAs to purchase these things. The result is that new mothers who have decided to breastfeed can use their own money to buy breast pumps and supplies and receive a slight tax deduction for these purchases. As Big Government interventions go, this sounds pretty innocuous, right? Not overly intrusive? Not spending a lot of the taxpayers’ money? Not doing anything to hurt non-nursing moms and their partners? According to certain much-trumpeted conservative values, this should be seen as a really great idea. I should elaborate, you say?

Continue reading