Of poor Southerners, legalizing weed and Branden Klayko, RIP

Jun 28, 2017 at 11:13 am
poor Southerners

So do you think the Senate will pass the health bill? Even though it is to healthcare what you are to the Enlightenment?

You’re lucky I don’t enlighten you with my fists, you perfumed ponce. But yeah, definitely. The opposition from GOP senators has been mealy-mouthed, to put it politely. It’s all about the process, not the substance, which they knew about to begin with — so they’ll vote for it. I-didn’t-like-how-we-got-here-but-hey-we’re-here-now-sort-of-thing. There was plenty of symbolic opposition in the House, which evaporated when they actually had to vote.

Mind-boggling, but this is who they are. McConnell will go down in history as one of the worst Americans of all time. He might have hidden the process, but he never hid his intentions. I wonder how he feels knowing that millions will cheer when he kicks the bucket?

It probably gives him the warm fuzzies. The hilarious thing about this bill is that it’s effectively a transfer of billions of dollars from poor Southerners to coastal liberal elites. And I’ll cheer when it passes, even if it means sensible people who didn’t vote for this shit will suffer. The vast majority of people who will suffer are those who voted for Trump, McConnell and Paul, which can only be a good thing.

A good thing? That millions will lose coverage and thousands will die as a direct result? Controversial, even by your contrarian, arsehole standards.

Not really. It’s the only way universal healthcare will ever take hold here. People think that Britain has universal healthcare because it was given to them. That’s total bollocks. Brits got universal healthcare because of massive sacrifice by ordinary people fighting one-balled Adolf.

And did this country not sacrifice doing exactly the same thing?

Not in the same way. Civilians sacrificed less directly in that war, which, for the most part, took place on the other side of the planet. Something like 40,000 Brits died during the Blitz, all of them civvies, in just eight months. That’s more than one 9/11 a month. Then in 1945, after thousands more had died, Churchill offered them the same society that existed in 1939. Not surprisingly they told him to fuck off. Real change in societies that are structured around inherited wealth comes about only through mass sacrifice. And that’s what this bill may do here. So despite its sickening cruelty — in fact, because of its sickening cruelty — I’m all for it.

Perhaps. For every Bernie Sanders single-payer, there are hundreds of John Steinbeck’s “temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” Maybe their saving grace will be that our political predictions over the last year have been about as reliable as Trump’s pre-election promises.

Not this time. They’ve made their bed, they’ve got to lie in it. And we’re due a win.

Speaking of winning, legalizing weed in Kentucky is a surefire hit. I know you’ve never had an adult beverage in your life, but do you think you might ease up on the puritan life if they legalize medical marijuana here?

Well, I’m not sick, and my body is, as your mother knows, a temple. So what kind of knuckleheaded question was that?

No doubt you’ll be the healthiest man in the graveyard.

I’m not sick, but I am a socialist libertarian. Don’t laugh. So long as it doesn’t impact anyone else, I couldn’t give two shits what people do in their own free time. Don’t turn up to work high, don’t drive high, but otherwise... infinitely less harmful than booze.

As my old colleague and unforgiven, alleged plagiarist Johann Hari once wrote, the only thing the cartels fear is legalisation. It is dead right. Which means, unfortunately, that it’ll never happen here. Kentucky is stuck in reverse.

A feeling not helped by the untimely death of my mate Branden Klayko. An infinitely greater loss to Louisville than some poxy basketball wins.

Didn’t know you knew him.

We got friendly when he first began his blog; then he helped me out a lot when I developed the Marcus Lindsey. We stayed tight, and he gave me an incredible tour of New York City about seven years ago — one of the highlights of my life, to be honest. There are a lot of good people in this town, but he was a top bloke — I don’t know that I ever met a better man in Louisville, straight up, and I’d be hard pressed to say who else in my life left such an indelible and unimpeachable mark.

Touching stuff, especially from a self-confessed gadfly and curmudgeon. I doff my top hat in your direction, sir. Let’s leave this week’s convo on that high note.