Rex Murphy: It’s the ordinary Joes, not the liberal elites, that are allowing society to continue to function during COVID-19 | National Post

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There’s a guy down in Minnesota named Mike Lindell who runs a successful company called MyPillow. He’s a strong Christian who used to be a drug addict, but managed to turn things around in his personal life and build a successful company. In the heat of the current pandemic, he answered the call from U.S. President Donald Trump for private businesses to throw in their hand with government efforts and assist in whatever way they can.

Lindell, who’s an ordinary sort of fellow, ordered his company to stop making pillows and start producing face masks. This was a big turnaround that was done at emergency speed. It took MyPillow workers a mere three days to turn a 200,000-square-foot factory into a facility that produces masks. Wow.

He’s at 10,000 per day and promises to bring production up to 50,000. It’s the kind of story that all of us could, perhaps even should, cheer. But Lindell, in his brief, three-minute remarks, also mentioned his faith and asked people to pray. And praised President Trump.

Christian faith, prayer, praise for Trump: there, my friends, is the trifecta of progressive unspeakables. Many of the grand sages of the TV panels, the Twitter Illuminati and the smug know-it-alls of the internet came down on him like a sledgehammer. They were scornful, supercilious and sublimely sarcastic.

For example, John Zeigler, a Mediate senior columnist, tweeted: “Lets be very clear, Mike Lindell, with whom I was once forced to be on at least an hour-long conference call, is WAY more insane than Trump.” And Norm Ornstein, a contributing editor at the once-prestigious magazine The Atlantic, wrote: “Fact: Mike Lindell is an awful human being. An utter embarrassment to my home state of Minnesota.”

There were many, many more howls of insults and contempt. This is a guy who turned over his factory to make hospital masks during a national health emergency, instead of sitting on a cable panel show and blathering on about pronouns or Jane Fonda staging multiple arrests during look-at-me protests. Why didn’t Lindell organize a group of celebrities to produce a video with each of them singing three or four words of John Lennon’s execrable, vomitous song “Imagine”?  That’s what America needs now in this health crisis: millionaire movie stars warbling fragments of the most vacuous lyrics since “Puff the Magic Dragon.”

I’d take Mike Lindell — a former drug addict and and all-around ordinary guy — and his face masks over 100 Wonder Woman movies any day. Or the great sacrifice coming from one of our guys, “Dumb and Dumber” protagonist Jim Carrey, pledging to grow his beard for the duration for the crisis. Face fungus as empathy? He’s the Mother Teresa of the Hollywood hills.

There in something almost innately spiteful about the mavens of the media and the professional classes, when they see any of those who they believe are their “lessers” doing real things to help. Their reflex is always to mock them, deplore (a Hillary Clinton term) their beliefs, belittle their existence and deny that they have anything to contribute, even when, demonstrably, they do.

Ordinary guys (that’s a gender neutral term in my vocabulary) — truck drivers, grocery store clerks, gas station operators, food delivery people — are centrally vital to the whole nation at this time. I hope they are not forgotten when this pandemic passes. They should at least be forgiven all income tax for the current year as an acknowledgement of their service.

Trump won the election by aligning with what he termed “the forgotten worker,” and forgoing the approval of the elites. Here at home, it also explains Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s victory. Ford has faced a lot of the same kind of unmerited scorn that has been poured on Lindell. But those watching Ford every morning, even those who had previously dismissed him as an inarticulate and particularly “unclassy” choice for premier, have awakened to his real powers of communication.

He doesn’t deflect, he’s modest (a rarity for a politician), even humble. He shows a genuine compassion for the citizens of his province. Most of all, like Trump, he shows up, he connects with people. The image of him going personally in his truck to pick up face masks, generously donate by Dental Brands (yes, they deserve explicit mention), was, though I’d suggest he wasn’t thinking of it this way, a masterful communications strategy. Heart speaks what words never reach. Seeing him loading the masks into his pickup truck himself was worth a thousand cliché sermonettes.

Let us remember the ordinary, working-class people, along with our valiant health-care workers, when all this is over, and not slip back, as some are wont, to forgetting their real worth and their very “meaningful” everyday jobs.

This content was originally published here.

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