Sandy O Starts Feeling the Heat

Ever true to her sophomoric self, the Democratic party’s new thought leader never stops thinking about what’s best for the planet, and what’s most punitive for the old white patriarchal robber barons who run it.

And Sunday was no day of rest for this champion of all things green.

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s cortex was buzzing with the thought of a new grievance she’d dug up while visiting a communal garden in her Bronx, New York, district.

In the Instagram video that followed, she revealed her discovery of an elitist “colonial approach” that’s taken root in most of today’s community gardens -- a surprise to everyone, especially the gardeners.

Evidently by omission, they’ve been guilty of denigrating the “culturally familiar” vegetables prized by communities of color: long-oppressed indigenous peoples and slave progeny whose culinary traditions are being dismissed by community garden gatekeepers -- those palefaced neo-hippies who unwittingly do the bidding of their neo-racist overlords by growing healthy vegetables like cauliflower.

What’s worse, stripping people of color of their dietary identities makes them wary about embracing the noble goals of environmental justice, which are intractably woven into the larger reed basket of socioeconomic justice issues.

This creates a de facto “Stockholm syndrome” in which the oppressed end up voting in line with their oppressors -- or not voting at all -- resulting in a subversion of their own cultural interests.

To Ocasio-Cortez and other radical progressives, it’s simply the latest example of the poisonous Eurocentric bias of America’s dominant white culture.

As for the cauliflower itself, this cruciferous edible is, admittedly, white -- and privileged to be brimming with nutrients.  It’s also thankfully short on the starches and other carbohydrates that saturate such primitive vegetables as corn, wheat, and rice, the staples of diets that have caused an epidemic of childhood obesity, type-2 diabetes and shortened lifespans within the communities that Ocasio-Cortez claims to be protecting and nurturing.

The truth is, when one peels back the onion of her most recent whining, it’s not about cauliflower or cauliflower power.

It’s simply about power.

Like so many of her puerile postings on social media, this vegetable shaming is, at its core, one little harrumph in a herculean harangue that calls for the left’s totalitarian control of every aspect of America’s economic and cultural future, while railing against the Democratic party’s incrementalism of the past. 

Sandy O and her comrades in the instant gratification generation decry the meager progress of “La Revolucion Todo” promised 50 years ago by the New Left: Students for a Democratic Society, MEChA, the Peace and Freedom Party and the like. It was never delivered, at least not in any cohesive form or to any transformative degree.

The last straw for the venerable “Occupy Wall Street” movement and the newly minted “Antifa” faction was the election of Donald Trump in 2016, a watershed event that so dispirited the left generally, and was seen as such an insult to women specifically, it paved the way for Ocasio-Cortez’s stunning ascension to power.

After defeating ten-term congressman and Democratic Caucus Chair Joe Crowley in the Democratic primary, she trounced Republican Anthony Pappas in the November 2018 congressional election.

Suddenly, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was the Democrats’ Golden Girl and the darling of the liberal media. She was the breath of fresh air and gateway to the youth vote they had longed for.  Her victory was an energizing flash point for the left -- so much so that this 29-year-old bartender from the boroughs began serving her own signature drinks, cutting off the back-slapping bipartisan drunks of the old Democratic guard, and calling every tune the House jukebox played.

Ah, but fame is fleeting, and her dreams are in danger of drying up like raisins in the sun now that her six-month-long utility as the rabbit in the long-distance race to the next election is no longer needed or wanted. 

In fact, her very presence is becoming a liability.

While Democratic presidential hopefuls are carefully choosing policy positions that can appease their progressive base without alienating the moderate voters they’ll need to succeed in the general election, Ocasio-Cortez is still busy burnishing her Joan of Arc chain mail.

Her promotion of the standard democratic socialist canon has burgeoned into an unabashed insistence on an extreme progressive platform that includes the Green New Deal’s total restructuring of the U.S. economy, the abolition of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the opening of all U.S. borders, Medicare for all, family-sustaining government jobs for all, free higher education for all, student loan debt forgiveness for all, financial reparations for all African-Americans, a 70% marginal tax rate for all wealthy Americans and, of course, the immediate impeachment of President Trump.

As a result, the liberal media are covering her now as sparingly as possible, and Fox News is happily taking up the slack, promoting her day and night as the poster child for all things Democratic.

Can a Sandy O Town Hall on Fox be far behind?

It had better be soon. Otherwise, we may not hear much about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and her all-but-communist ideology, at least not until after the 2020 election, when it will once again be safe for Democrats and their minions in the media to idolize her.

Until then, she’ll have plenty of time to study up on cauliflower, a common addition in Indian food, and a vegetable abundant in Dominican restaurants and Mexican markets.

And, if she jogs her memory, she might recall that it’s also the prime ingredient in the “Roasted Cauliflower Special” that has long been served at Flats Fix, a hipster hangout in Union Square where she worked before running for Congress.

Not that it matters. When you’ve proclaimed, as she has, that being “morally right” is more important than being “factually right,” you’re in a very safe space these days, on either side of the aisle.

Timothy Philen is an opinion writer and author of Harper&Row/Lippincott’s You CAN Run Away From It!, a satirical indictment of American pop psychology.

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