When Americans badly needed a few laughs during the Great Depression, a cowboy comic named Will Rogers became a huge star--and influential public figure--by tweaking politicians and announcing, "I don't belong to any organized party, I'm a Democrat."
Now that Democrats and their independent ilk are even more disorganized and disheartened, here comes another comic calling for a "Rally to Restore Sanity" at the Washington Monument on October 30th.
After Glenn Beck's crowd scene at the nation's capital, Jon Stewart is organizing "people who've been too busy to go to rallies, who actually have lives and families and jobs." The effort may be starting out as a parody but could turn into a rallying point to counter Tea Party excesses.
The call to arms starts with the now classic "I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore!" and goes on to riff on it:
"Who among us has not wanted to open their window and shout that at the top of their lungs?
"Because we're looking for those people. We're looking for the people who think shouting is annoying, counterproductive, and terrible for your throat; who feel that the loudest voices shouldn't be the only ones that get heard; and who believe that the only time it's appropriate to draw a Hitler mustache on someone is when that person is actually Hitler. Or Charlie Chaplin in certain roles."
Stewart, along with Stephen Colbert holding a mock counter-rally, have the star power to draw an enormous crowd, and there will be no shortage of big names eager to join them. A cameo by one from the White House is certainly not out of the question.
Striking back at the Tea Party with reasonable arguments is not likely to sway millions of voters. Holding its excesses up to ridicule may work better
As Will Rogers used to say, "People who fly into a rage always make a bad landing."
Update: As almost 100,000 write on Facebook that they are planning to attend, Democratic gurus, true to their nature, are finding reasons to worry about the Jon Stewart rally, citing "asymmetry" (say what?) between the "zealous" Tea Party turnouts and those who respond to "a very gifted satirist calling for everyone to just chill."
They may have failed to notice that, if Democrats were at any lower temperature this year, they would be eligible for cryogenic storage. Chilling would be hot stuff.