I love IFC’s Portlandia. If you haven’t seen the show, here’s a quick synopsis: Portland, Ore. is depicted as a collection of hipsters, hippies, liberals, environmentalists, etc., who wear their dogma like skinny jeans. In other words, Portlandia is an extreme leftist haven spiraling ever farther leftward.
Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein are great portraying a wide range of liberal stereotypes, from the militantly feminist book store owners to concerned citizens Fred and Carrie, who help the city’s mayor with things like beating Seattle in the race to ban the most things.
As much as I love the show, I love the idea of a real Portlandia. I like to think that were I a patchouli-reeking stoner in search of a place where I could read my bad poetry and sell my dream catchers, there’s somewhere in the U.S. I could live. We have similar states — Utah for Mormons, for example, or Texas for people who like oversized belt buckles.
Not only do I like the idea of a real Portlandia but also its opposite: a state reserved for self-professed right-wing extremists. I don’t mean conservatives, nor do I mean Republicans. No, I’m talking about the foaming at the mouth whackadoos: the secessionists and conspiracy theorists and other rabid dogs that never had an opinion that wasn’t worth yelling. My desire isn’t so much to sequester them from the rest of polite society, though that certainly is a nice benefit, but rather to give them a place where they can roam wild in an America of their choosing.
Let’s call this utopia Essholia. The citizens of Essholia will be free to create their own definitions for common English words. For example, “tyrant” may be defined as “one who is elected both by legal and popular means and behaves moderately;” or, “socialist” might mean “any person who disagrees with me.”
Taxes will be nonexistent and the U.S. Constitution will be followed verbatim except where inconvenient (ex: “A well-regulated militia” will be stricken from the second amendment).
Citizens will enjoy a society with no government or regulations except for laws regarding immigration, religion, reproductive rights, and lifestyle choices. The free market will rule completely. Need a cop? Pay the going rate. How about a road? If there’s profit in building a road then the market will correct that.
Essholes can ride around helmetless on their 150-decibel Harleys and scream, “it’s my right” at each other, assuming they can pay the private road tolls. In the event of an accident they can have their massive head trauma treated at a hospital for whatever rate the market will bear. No pay, no play.
Their kids can play with lead-painted toys made at the many factories that the job creators will bring to Essholia thanks to the lack of regulations. What lead doesn’t make it onto products can be freely dumped into the rivers, but that won’t happen because even though it is significantly cheaper to do so and no regulation requires them to dispose of lead properly, large corporations always do the right thing.
Essholes will sleep well knowing that their fellow citizens are armed to the teeth, and that justice will be dealt swiftly and publicly in the event of an infraction. How this will happen given that there is no government remains to be seen: for-profit executions, perhaps?
Somehow all of the food and water in Essholia will be safe and abundant and jobs will pay great wages. I haven’t figured out exactly how that will work yet, but it has something to do with shouting, “I built this!”
The only news will come from cable television and talk radio, and it will be screamed by angry people.
We’ll dome the whole state off so that immigrants can’t get in and steal the Essholes’ jobs, and also so that the noxious plume of cigarette smoke, factory emissions, and hostility can’t get out.
When it’s all finished we’ll have Portlandia for the lunatic left and Essholia for the lunatic right, and the 99.5 percent of the population that remains can get back to what it does best: being kind, calm, responsible, reasonable, cooperative, and fully capable of laughing at ourselves.
One last note: I wish that I could say that Essholia exists solely in my tofu-addled brain, but Glenn Beck apparently beat me to it by a couple of weeks. Best of luck at your new location, Glenn, and don’t forget to close the door on your way out.