Friday, December 17, 2004

What's in a Name?

I was minding my own business this morning, reading the NYT on the ride into work. There was a little story about the president's economic conference yesterday, and panel discussion on Social Security. Along with the story was a pic, showing some apparently serious minded folks explaining the crisis of Social Security to themselves and whoever else might have been listening, which I bet no one else was because the only purpose of these functions is to people watch so you can back to the office or wherever and report on who you saw...

Anyway, back to the article and its accompanying pic and my minding my own business. Four of the people in the pic are gents, and one was a gal. The gal's name was Sandra Jaques. The name rang a bell. I thought for a minute and then seemed to recall that frenchman, Josh Marshall, mentioning her. And I was right. Here's the link. Then, that being last week, she was a plain old citizen from Iowa, undoubtedly representin' the common folk with whom the president is so familiar, and no doubt possessing the good ole fashion common horse sense that G. W. likes. Then also, that being last week, she was affiliated with some outfit called Women for a Sound Social Security Choice.

Now, as I mentioned a few days ago, I'm pretty up to date, or so I thought, with all the doo-dad organizations out there pressing for privatizing Social Security, but I hadn't ever heard of this cult. Funny thing, too, that Josh did a little googling and couldn't find her or the organization either. But in the pic--and you were probably wondering when I'd get back to that--the woman's affiliation was now listed as something called FreedomWorks. Now, this is a gang that apparently has its origins in one of the Jack Kemp groups, Empowering America, Down with Government, Up With Free Enterprise, or whatever.

So what happened? Did the existence-nonexistence of this Women for a Sound Social Security Choice cause a problem to where a new affiliation had to be added? I was pleased to see that this FreedomWorks society does have a webpage at least, so probably exists to a certain extent, at least in the figment of a few people's imaginations, with the time and inclination to set up a webpage and with the intent of hoping people think they're a, you know, actual interest group, with real, you know, members who contribute and care about the stuff they're selling.

Anyway, there's a lesson here, I think. I'm not sure what it is, but maybe something along the lines of, hey, when you're doctoring up your resume, make sure the employer or association you list can actually be identified somewhere so people won't think you're either a lying suckup or nincompoop.

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