“Profiles in Manliness” is a special feature in which we celebrate some of the Manliest members of society.
During a major election year, public discourse becomes centered on national politics. It’s up to public leaders and candidates to speak directly to the American people about the major issues affecting Mankind, hopefully in moments like this.
However, every election season, someone emerges that surprises the nation, speaking to the problems and dreams of many Americans. This year, one Man rose to that challenge: Joseph Wurzelbacher, commonly referred to as “Joe the Plumber”.
Joe captivated a nation when he publicly confronted Barack Obama about his slight increase in marginal tax rates for small business owners making 250,000 a year or more. Regular Americans, making nowhere near 250,000 a year, looked past his pathetically misguided support for the Ohio State Buckeyes and heralded Joe the Plumber a Man of the people (Manly). Its more Manly to stick to your guns and state over and over again that higher tax rates are simply unAmerican, especially when the other explanation uses erroneous and left-wing devices like data and evidence.
Joe was also a Man because his profession. Joe was a plumber, but even more Manly, he wasn’t actually a plumber. This is a rich tradition in Manliness—acting without instructions or formal training to complete Manly tasks, whether its plumbing, fixing your car, or killing every terrorist on your plane and saving your family.
Joe became an American icon in one media moment—a Carhartt wearing, untrained professional plumber with dogs. Despite Joe being a raging idiot in many ways, he was undoubtedly, a Man. For that, Joe the Plumber, we salute you.