Trey Gowdy, R, South Carolina, is one of many making a bold move to be the dumbest man in Congress. He had been in the running for "least self-aware," when he commented that $174,000 a year was too little money for him to live on, but he has since tried to claim the glittering prize of "most offensive comment."
There is money to be had in shouting "You lie!" during a State of the Union address, after all. Joe Wilson, also of South Carolina, has absolutely no legislative accomplishments, but he has good fund raising. He does not have much of a record of constituent services. So, if he isn't able to please corporate donors with legislation or constituents, how does he have money? By being offensive, of course, when President Obama said that undocumented immigrants would not be covered by the A.C.A.
. . . By the way, where are all those examples of the President "lying?" Right.
Well, Trey Gowdy wants to get that golden halo of "Biggest Nut in the Can," it seems.
Here is Trey Gowdy saying that the A.C.A. is giving people the "choice between" writing poetry or "working." As Charlie Pierce points out, Trey Gowdy worked one out of three days a year and got $174,000+ for it. Previously, Trey had complained that his salary was too low, by the way. Yesterday, Charlie Pierce followed up with a poet's response to Trey Gowdy.
Now me, I'm of an antiquarian mindset. I thought that "Trey Gowdy" is already a metrical unit. I thought, "What poem does his name belong in?"
Then I realized that that wouldn't work, because it would lead me to one of those poems with a trisyllabic foot, and I'm no good, and they're hard to read. Then I thought, "What poem would Trey Gowdy be able to read?" It had to rhyme, of course. Couplets would be good. Keep the lines short to match the length of thought. . . .
This brought to mind only two things: Namby Pamby by Henry Carey and John Arbuthnot's "Petition" by the funeral directors of London against the new apothecary reform law. The second one is not well known. Dr. Arbuthnot wrote a satire modeled on Samuel Garth's "The Dispensary" pretending to represent all of the undertakers in a union protesting that regulating apothecaries would be bad for business and therefore ought not to be a law.
Arbuthnot's satire lays bare a point that we should all consider. When we ask, "What's good for private industry" when we consider public policy, the answer will always be, "Pass no law," because somebody will profit from everything -- even if it's just the funeral homes.
Below, I do not promise that it's good, but it rhymes: "Bray Gouty."
with apologies to Henry Carey and John Arbuthnot
All you pundits now in rage,
All you bloggers on the page,
Hear the word of the Lord
Freshly flowing, or as poured:
Poets or workers you must choose,
For words polite must needs be loose,
And men employed do not muster
Eloquence, only bluster.
Learn you all from Bray Gouty!
He shall teach you verses shouty.
Bray Gouty, Sloe Pilssen,
Fine men by fine men chosen
To lead Palmetto, and elect,
Who know each heart, each defect.
So fine their hearts, quick to sigh,
Forced are they who shout, “You lie!”
'Tis true a humble man
May live on fifty grand,
But his name says “Trey”
And needs this triple pay.
For this Bray Gouty works
One day in three, nor shirks,
Any more – for greater fame –
The man would needs change his name.
ACA and SNAP abhors
Bray Gouty, along with whores
Who think to contra-ceive.
Poets and other funding thieves
May his money one day take!
In virtue against such fakes
He comes unto the mic
“They choose, uncontrite,
Between poetry and working,
Between versing and this twerking!
While I the standard bear,
I oppose affordable care,
And choosing, while I'm at it.
No more arts, no rhymes, no batik.
More service, less choice,
Freedom reigns, and all rejoice.”
Thus spake grand Bray Gouty
And “Amen” from all the chamber pouty.
It echoed too from a place
He had always served apace,
Constituents true and expectant:
It came from Carolina sextons.