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The Daily Inquisition / October 16, 2008

Today’s Defendant: Joe the Plumber

Statement of the Grand Inquisitor: Oh, this guy’s got to pay.

Joe the Plumber, aka Joe Wurzelbacher—or maybe his name’s actually Samuel and he isn’t a licensed plumber–but regardless he’s an arrogant bald-headed prick who’s become an overnight celebrity after John McCain made him the representative American Everyman. His humble concerns supposedly reflect the nation’s ills. The question is, as New York Times columnist Gail Collins put it:

Did it work? Was the audience moved by McCain’s description of the plight of Joe, the Ohio plumber, who discovered that the Obama program might mean higher taxes for him if his business were to net more than $250,000 a year? Or were they stunned by the idea that anybody still expects to make that much money in the foreseeable future?

Joe the Plumber is being discussed as just a variation of “Joe Sixpack”, and that confusion is where the real trouble lies. Joe Sixpack, a nauseating term, stands for an American wage slave, living from paycheck to paycheck, just trying to get by. That’s why he needs the sixpack, see. Suggesting that a plumber who’s worried about the taxes on a quarter-million a year is a sympathetic Joe Sixpack figure—that we should fret over his endangered American Dream—well, it’s just so vile we need a torch-bearing mob to deal with it, stat. Why is there never a torch-bearing mob around when you need one? In The Simpsons, there’s always a torch-bearing mob.

(Speaking of The Simspons, the only one who ever sounds sincere talking about Joe Sixpack is Montgomery Burns, the rich, venomous nuclear power plant owner, whose reaction, when any employee steps on his private property, is “Release the hounds.”)

Statement of the Defense: Well—

Verdict: Tax him! Tax the hell out of him! Redistribute his wealth all over the fucking map! Declare Class War! It’s loooooooooooooong overdue.

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