Akin Nabs Shemp Award


May 04, 2012
Two weeks ago this column asked for Three Stooges' memories. Emails began arriving in short order - as fast as Curly might say, "poifect," or Larry might say "Hey, what's the big idea?"

A number of readers related sentimental tales of father-and-son bonding in front of the old cathode ray tube. Women recalled having to watch a show they loathed, because an older brother controlled the TV channels. They eventually came to enjoy the Stooges as "victims of soicumstance."

Many of these comments are on our Facebook page. Carol Size of Des Peres has no use for the new Stooge movie's political correctness, which includes a final message asking young viewers of the Stooges, circa 2012, to not engage in eye-poking at home.

Craig Niehaus of Webster Groves said he is certain the Stooges are Democrats based on an episode in which they meet Franklin Roosevelt, and are given executive clemency by FDR for accidentally breaking into a vault of the United States Treasury.

"I'm sure they voted for him, too," declares Niehaus, regarding likely Stooge fealty to the Democratic icon.

I sort of regret seeing the Stooges politicized like everything else today. I also lament that - were Moe, Larry & Curly alive - they would find it hard to concoct episodes to outdo the Stoogery of our current politicians.

How could they compete with a New York politician who posts his privates on social media? How could they compete with a politician going before the "Judgy-Wudgy" for paying off an aide to take the fall for his love child while running for president?

Despite my reservations over the attempt by Mr. Niehaus to politicize the Stooges, I am grateful for a wonderful poster of Shemp Howard which he delivered to our paper. Shemp is the underrated Stooge stand-in, best known for his "eeb-eeb-eeb-eeb" whenever he was left speechless.

There are politicians on both sides of the aisle who would be far better off if they simply said, "eeb-eeb-eeb-eeb," instead of what they actually articulate. Our own Rep. Todd Akin comes to mind as a candidate for a "Shemp Award," based on what came out of his mouth this April.

Akin likes federal student loans for college a lot less than his own party's standard bearer, Mitt Romney. In reference to his view about federal aid to students for college, Akin said:

"America has got the equivalent of stage three cancer of socialism because the federal government is tampering in all kinds of stuff it has no business tampering in."

Anyone who has ever listened to a doctor deliver bad news about a sick relative has to wince at a "stage three cancer" allusion. And must politicians throw around terms like "socialism," "communism" or "fascism" when talking about budget priorities?

"Oh, cut it ouuuuut!" Enough of the extreme talk. "Eeb-eeb-eeb-eeb!"

Visit Don Corrigan's blog at www.doncorrigan.com.

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Forsyth School
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