Elie's Expositions

A bereaved father blogging for catharsis... and for distraction. Accordingly, you'll see a diverse set of topics and posts here, from the affecting to the analytical to the absurd. Something for everyone, but all, at the core, meeting a personal need.

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Thursday, October 26, 2006

Nest Heads and Talking Heads

The comic strip Nest Heads has been running a series all this week entitled "Voting Tips for the Radical Moderate". (Unfortunately this week's comics won't be available on line until next week). My immediate reaction was: cool, I made the comics!! OK, the main character doesn't look much like me; I'm not quite as skinny (anymore) as he is, and I can't grow a decent beard to save my life. But I've been using the "Radical Moderate" designation for quite a while now! Nice to see that I'm not alone in my innate dislike for extremes, and for party polities of any kind.

On a related note, this past weekend we went to see the movie Man of the Year. If nothing else, it should set the record as the most deceptively advertised film of all time. All of the commercials I saw portray it as a comedy vehicle for Robin Williams, in which he plays an irreverent comedian who apparently ascends to the presidency. In fact, the movie was perhaps 10% a comedy, and mostly a combination of thriller and political commentary. Unlike one of my all time favorite movies, Dave, MotY's theme was emphatically not that a regular guy might do a better job than politicians in running the country. In fact, the few actual political statements that Williams' character made in the movie were almost completely bland and contentless. The movie was mostly a commentary on corporate greed and on the danger of over-reliance on high-tech voting. Not at all what I was expecting.

Sometimes I do think a comedian really ought to be president though. At least he'd have a sense of humor about most of the stupidities that our politicians waste their time with, leaving him free to focus his serious energy on our genuine problems. Robin Williams wouldn't be my first choice though - and anyway isn't he an alien, and thus not legally allowed to be president? But there are other, much more qualified candidates. Just based on his quotes alone, Steven Wright would get my vote. Or maybe Andy Kaufman, if he really is still alive.

Then again, reasonable compromise does seem to still be possible occasionally, even under our current system, as evidenced by today's decision here in the Garden State. Robin Williams had the ultimate comment on that issue though, in one of the few actual laughs in Man of the Year:
"You want an amendment against same sex marriage?? Anyone who's ever been married knows it's always the same sex!"


At 10/27/06, 1:12 AM, Blogger Jack's Shack said...

Andy Kaufman- He could wrestle Kim Jon Il and solve all of our problems in ten minutes or less.

Ok, maybe Kim is not a woman, but what the hell.

At 10/27/06, 8:04 AM, Blogger Soccer Dad said...

"Radical moderate?" That's how Thomas Friedman describes Yossi Beilin. (No, I'm not kidding.)

At 10/27/06, 8:04 AM, Blogger Soccer Dad said...

BTW, what's wrong with extremes?

At 10/27/06, 9:12 AM, Blogger Elie said...

Jack: Actually Kaufman did wrestle men as well. Remember his match with Jerry Lawler, and their famous brawl afterwards on the Letterman show? More than ten years after Kaufman's death, it was finally revealed that both the initial fight and the brawl were staged, thought they seemed incredibly real at the time. That's why there are still hold-outs who think he staged his own death as well.

David: If Yossi Beilin is a moderate than who would actually be considered leftist - Stalin? But you do raise a legitimate point. My viewpoints seem moderate to me, but probably those on the far left would consider me a rightist, and vice versa for those on the far right. So to some degree it's relative.


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