Thursday, July 30, 2009

Follow the money


When the Mad Cow demonstrations erupted last year, the K-blog love lines were all lit up with fingerpointing commentators. It was feverish anti-American sentiment that was a sign the US should pull out its troops once and for all, said some. It was all a ploy to embarrass 2MB into stepping down (yeah, like he even has a sense of shame), or to get him impeached. I myself blamed the machinations of Pyongyang's fifth columnists, who are always plotting to find issues that might resonate with the public enough to throw out the government and allow the liberators from the DPRK to march victoriously through Tongnimmun and down Sejongno. 

But after a trip to Costco, I realized we all had it wrong. Completely, horribly wrong. 

Who really stood to benefit the most from keeping American beef out, especially if a whipped-up public would ensure that no market growth would occur for seventy-five years? It's the Australians. Whose beef was rushed into replace American beef from Montana and Nebraska when that Canadian calf tripped across the BC-Washington border in 2003 and was immediately diagnosed with Mad Cow? It was the Australians. 

Evil, evil people. Descended from rapists, buggerers, and thieves, so should it be any surprise to anyone that they would plant a disease-ridden cow onto the back of someone's Ford F-150 and sneak it across the border from Canada. Canada, which is part of that same British Commonwealth entity thingee and is naturally complicit? 

When ground-up American beef was no longer available in your Big Mac™ in Myŏngdong, Korea's premium hanu didn't go up in sales, since it remained a high-price specialty item. Korean pork was used as a substitute, but it was cheap Australian beef, raised on land stolen from Aborigines, that was the biggest gainer. 

So when I saw that smugly posted sign over the heads of the beef mongers at Costco and the purchasers of their pastoral product, I vomited in terror. Well, not literally, but in my mind's eye I did, though that might have been suggested by a little aftertaste of the sample of grapefruit-flavored wine spritzer that had managed to make its way back up my throat (grapefruit-flavored wine spritzer, like lemon soju, tastes much better going down than going up). 

How long are we, the good people of the US of A, going to let the Aussies have a free ride militarily while they secretly plot to destroy Middle America? I say set them adrift... let them crash into Antarctica for all I care. When they're calling Obama on the red phone (or Palin, if the drift takes a while), screaming in agony as rabid penguins peck their eyes out, we'll just say, "Oh, yeah? Oh, yeah?! Stop undermining American beef, you kangaroo-diddling inbreds!" Then hang up and make them call back, just to show we're in charge. For good measure, let it go to voice mail once or twice.

The only thing wrong with my plan is that the Australians — too undignified to die an honorable death at the hands of flightless seabirds — will seek refuge in New Zealand, our true ally, inundating those hapless islands and screwing everything up there. Expect ovine STD crossovers to explode. 

I should add that taking the above photo with my iPhone involved no small amount of risk, especially considering all the molka (hidden camera) arrests lately. And lots of skill: I had to point it in such a way that it would look like I was just checking out the meaning of some word in the American Heritage Dictionary (AmeriHeriDic in the trade). The escalator attendant whose job was pulling carts of the cart wheel grabby thingee™ spotted me and told me to erase all the pictures I'd taken inside the store. I said sure, but I was on a mission, so screw her. 

And to be honest, this bit of corporate espionage has given me a rush. Now that I've taken on the evil forces of capitalism, I'd like to head to Pyongyang and see how I can put my iPhone to work bringing down the evil forces of communism. I could like accidentally walk into one of Kim Jong-il's lavish palaces or a market full of empty shelves and snap hundreds of pictures while pretending to look up symptoms of pneumonia on the WebMD app. North Korea now is part of the 3G network, so it's the perfect cover. 

And one other thing: We were told that the Australians were providing grass-fed beef, which is more natural and requires no antibiotics. But here's the Australian sign proudly touting its "grain-fed" goodness. Could this be another of those Canberra tales? 

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