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Pink Slime Inspires Branstad Call for Rhetorical Civility

South Dakota Lt. Gov. Matt Michaels got together with some fellow elected officials at the BPI plant in South Sioux City yesterday to eat some pink slime burgers and pump memes for their big industry friends.

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback joined others in pumping the new, clever counterslogan: "Dude, it's beef!" Iowa Governor Terry Branstad offered this passionate plea for rhetorical civility:

It's time to end the smear campaign and to stop the use of inaccurate, inappropriate and charged words that are designed to scare people [Gov. Terry Branstad, press conference, South Sioux City, Nebraska; quoted in Pat Curtis, "Branstad: Time to End 'Smear Campaign' Against Beef Product," Radio Iowa, 2012.03.29].

May we assume Lt. Gov. Michels will bring that message home to ask his fellow South Dakotans to stop using the inaccurate, inappropriate, and charged term tenure in their advocacy for Governor Daugaard's education reform plan?

May we assume that Branstad and his fellow Republicans are declaring their official support for a boycott of all conservative talk radio, whose stock in trade is inaccurate, inappropriate, and charged words?

May we assume that Branstad and Michels will call on all of their followers to stop shouting socialism, death panels, and government take-over of health care in reference to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act?

May we assume Rep. Kristi Noem is done talking about job-killing regulations?

Every party can slip into hyperbolic language in advocacy of its causes. Republicans are not immune to this weakness. But when folks apply a physically accurate description to a consumer product—it is pink, and it is slime—and that description helps frame consumer concerns about the industrial recycling of offal into dinner, Republican leaders suddenly feel they must stifle public discourse and market decisions. How very amusing.


  1. larry kurtz 2012.03.30

    The earth hater party IS pink slime.

  2. Clayton Halverson 2012.03.30

    It seems odd that our state officials would spend a lot of time and money promoting South Dakota Certified Beef, and then turn around and tells us that the worst part of the animal is good to eat. Maybe it is for some, but if we want to promote the very best, then make it the very best. I just don't find that "behooving".

  3. Bill Fleming 2012.03.30

    On a tangent note, "ambergris" (the stuff they use to make fine perfume) is whale puke. Stuff is what it is.

  4. mike 2012.03.30

    Sounds disgusting.

  5. Rorschach 2012.03.30

    There was a slime eater from Pierre
    Who washed the muck down with a beer
    He said it was yum
    As he filled up his tum
    With ammonia, scrotum and rear

  6. Eve Fisher 2012.03.30

    Awww. It reminds me of the quote from the Director of the Texas Water Quality Board: "Cyanide is a scare word." I've got news for them: I don't have to eat "ammonia, scrotum and rear" to keep anyone in business. But how appropriate that all the politicians had to gather at the plant and scarf it up! With smiles on their faces!

  7. UnionCo 2012.03.30

    Michels said it hadn't killed anyone!

  8. D.E. Bishop 2012.03.30

    Pink Slime. It is what it is.

    Hamburger - a ham-free product.

    Maybe that one should be changed. Maybe Michels wants to limit people to only refering to it as Ground Beef. It is what it is.

    Love the poetry Rorschach.

  9. Bill Fleming 2012.03.30

    It's probably not good to know what's in a weiner. Don't ask, don't tell. LOL.

  10. Roger Elgersma 2012.03.30

    The part that scared me is that they have to treat it so that there is no more ecoli bacteria. Well the part that has intestinal contents splattered on it is normally trimmed off so that the meat will not contain e-coli, which is a severe diarhia agent. This was real meat but just contaminated. So now they are recycling this contaminated meat to make an easy dollar. And Yeah, 'It is real beef'. But it is not the beef we wanted to eat. This is a real slick way to get around those nasty government regulations that are meant to keep ecoli bacteria out of our food. So now government is backing up big business to give us diarhia. Goody Goody!!!!! Maybe those regulations had a purpose before we get to conservative to ask the real questions.

  11. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.03.31

    Michels, Brownback, et al. should spend less time fighting for LFTB and more time defending LGBT.

    "Ammonia, scrotum, and rear"—brilliant! And hooves, Clayton? You clever dog: I'll bet we get a bite or two those in each serving, too. Yet our Legislature doesn't want us eating even non-intestinal horsemeat.

  12. Bill Fleming 2012.03.31

    Hey Rorschach, that limerick deserves the widest possible audience. Mind if we post it elsewhere? If okay, should we just credit your nom de plume? (or is it a nom de guerre... what's the dif, btw? Cory, help me out here.)

  13. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.03.31

    Spread that limerick! But I wonder: why has no conservative thought of branding this anti-processed-guts propaganda as "pinko slime"?

    (nom de guerre: "name of war", adopted by soldiers. nom de plume: "name of pen", adopted by writers.)

  14. larry kurtz 2012.04.02

    Pink slime diverting spotlight from industrial poultry processors: MoJo.

  15. larry kurtz 2012.04.05

    Pink slime and spent-hen meat is laden with antibiotics, hormone disruptors: WNYC.

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