The truth? You know, after Thursday night, I’m not so sure I can handle the truth. Or at least the College Truth Tour’s version of it.
Alright, backing up: Sept. 27, Herman Cain and the subsequent Cain/train jokes stopped by the Power Center to have a little chat about the economy. But don’t be fooled, fool — though Cain’s business was all business, it hardly took any time at all for the former Republican presidential candidate to get swept up in Wolverine spirit.
“Aw, shucky ducky,” Cain’s speech began. “Now let me see if I’m in the right place — uh, Go Blue?”
Ah, yes, Go Blue indeed. And what the hell, go red, too — after all, this was a cross-party fiesta. Just ask the uncomfortably pluralized Job Creators Solutions group, the organization that brought Cain and the College Truth Tour to Ann Arbor. According to their website, the College Truth Tour is a bipartisan initiative devoted to setting students straight on matters of the economy. And if you have any doubts about the bipartisan-ness of a lecture from a Republican presented by the College Republicans, never fear — the bleeding hearts got their word in. Specifically, from the back row of the auditorium, usually offering a poignant rebuttal to whatever poignant point Cain made. Just listen:
“The United States does not have a sugar daddy,” Cain yelled. “Who we gonna borrow from?”
“Australia!” someone shouted from the crowd. “Germany! China!”
And the geography lesson continued for another thirty seconds.
Actually, there were a lot of lessons to be learned Thursday night, courtesy of the godfather of Pizza and the Truth Tourers. For instance, after the speech, I added “Taxmageddon” to my growing list of reasons to hide my kids and hide my wife for indefinite periods of time. “The Taxmageddon is coming!” Cain warned the crowd. “I don’t know when it’s at but … it’s coming.”
And another moral culled from the evening: History is what you make of it. Or, perhaps more accurately, what you feel like making up about it.
“The Founders had the vision to write … ‘All men and women are created equal,’” Cain argued in his defense of the Declaration of Independence.
“Actually, that’s a lie,” responded a voice from the crowd, referring to the exclusion of women’s rights in the document. You know, the little missing piece that resulted in an ongoing struggle for gender equality.
“I know the Declaration of Independence, thank you,” Cain retorted. Then he started rattling off other lines from what he described as “the greatest document next to the Bible.”
But like always, Cain got back on his feet, because dammit, this event was all about the truth! We wanted the facts, and boy, did he give them to us.
“A trillion is a million, million!”
Uh, no, not that one, I meant —
“I did that job for nine months. Then for three years.”
Ah, ok, not what I was talking about but —
“I used to watch 30-minute sitcoms!”
Well, you get the idea.
But in all seriousness folks, if we get beyond the “USA” chants, the shouts for pizza and pretty much all the jeers from inebriated Obama fans looking for a good laugh, Cain really did have a message that we can all get behind — inform yourself.
“Stay informed,” he told the audience. “Because stupid people are ruining America.” Harsh? Maybe. But there was no way this crowd could get offended — I mean, do you really think stupid people show up to the College Truth Tour? No, the Cain-Trainwreck argued. America needs heroes. Dreamers. Winners. And we’re not going to get those if we don’t educate ourselves. So stay informed, he told us. Find out what’s going on in America and not-America. Read a newspaper. Flip through a book. Better yet, try Fox News.