Prometheus Bound -- and Gagged
by L. Neil Smith
Consider, for just a moment if you will, all of the myriad
things poor "liberals" have to be against these days, simply in
order to retain their social credentials and remain "politically
First and foremost, I suppose, comes smoking. Every bigoted
gaggle of prune-faced prudes desperately needs some poor fool to
pick on constantly and feel superior to -- usually because they have
so many things to feel inferior about, themselves. Eventually, if
they are able to gain enough political power they can beat him up
and kill him.
For Hitler, it was Jews.
For fat southern 1950s deputy sheriffs in mirrored sunglasses, it was blacks.
For their Volvo-driving, wine-and-cheese gobbling equivalents
today, it's those who enjoy tobacco. Never mind that nobody hurts
anybody with tobacco but himself -- that there's no scientifically
respectable evidence that "secondhand smoke" hurts anybody. If
these fascist geeks so much as glimpse somebody smoking a cigarette,
downwind and five hundred yards away, they fall into a gasping
stupor, and when they come out of it, can be heard to demand in a
lapse of self-control that smokers "go back to Virginia where the
It's hard to choose, but I guess the private automobile and the
internal combustion engine usually occupy the next place on the list
of "liberal" hate fetishes, although for some -- apparently our
soon-to-be ex-Vice President is among them -- these items of 19th
century technology take first place on the hit parade despite the
countless blessings of swift, reliable transportation, personal
self-sufficiency, and privacy -- not to mention employment -- they
provide us with.
I really ought to stop trying to put these things in any kind of
rational order; there's nothing rational about them. Let's just
agree that another thing you hear lefties whimpering about all the
time is the individual right to own and carry weapons -- with a
particular emphasis on firearms. Very few left-thinking folks have
the moral courage to swim upstream on this one, even though the
widespread ownership and use of handguns has been proven -- Florida
is a fine example of the phenomenon -- to reduce violent crime. And
never mind that the mindless prohibition of such useful artifacts
works an unfair, often deadly hardship on women, the elderly, and
minorities -- while giving criminal gangs and individual brutes the
Judging by their performance in the appropriately-named criminal
justice system -- not to mention West Side Story -- "liberals"
have a certain fondness for criminal gangs and individual brutes,
Then there's the highly respectable two-million-year old human
practice of eating red meat, rare, medium, and well done. "Real food
for real people." The worst way you can offend "liberals" in this
area is by insisting on cooking it yourself over a simmering
charcoal grill in your own back yard -- more guff about secondhand
smoke, I presume.
And don't forget the sorry, self-contradictory specimens who
enjoy whining about the accumulation of garbage in America's
precious and dwindling landfills -- or was that wetlands? -- but who
demonstrate vociferously against doing the intelligent thing and
Last, but certainly not least, is that ultimate of "liberal" bugaboos, nuclear power.
Now in case you missed it, what do all of these "horrors" have
in common? Well to begin with (consider this a hint) most people -- although
by no means all -- have to ignite tobacco in order to enjoy it properly.
And modern personal weaponry employs smokeless gunpowder
consuming it as a fuel to propel bullets toward burglars, rapists,
and freelance tax collectors in America's alleyways and municipal
The key political word in the phrase "internal combustion
engine" seems to be "combustion". Almost every one of the
lame-brained substitutes "liberals" adore so well would eliminate
the use of that foul four-letter word, "burn", which is also
inextricably involved in eating meat (unless you're a lot braver
than I am), cooking it indoors or outdoors, and properly disposing
of the refuse afterwards.
And while nuclear power doesn't really burn anything, most of
the feebs who oppose it think it does. It's especially interesting
to note, in this connection, that during the late and largely
unlamented 1960s -- that period of greatest "liberal" hatred and
distrust of computers -- these now ubiquitous devices (I'm using one
right now) were invariably portrayed as failing in a shower of
sparks and curtains of black smoke. When it became clear, even to
"liberals", that this doesn't happen, computers somehow miraculously
Clearly then, today's "liberalism" consists principally of
delayed emotional reaction to the discovery, somewhere around a
hundred thousand years ago, of fire. The question that comes to
mind -- to my mind, anyway (although I'll confess, to quote Tom
Hanks in a much better role than Forrest Gump, that they pay me to
be this way) -- is, "what the hell took them so long to find out
Put that way, over and over again, perhaps today's "liberals"
will eventually get the message. Of course once they do, they
won't be liberals any more.
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