Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

More how The Simpsons would vote

March 14, 2008

Springfield ’08

So I wanted to write an article about The Simpsons in politics. Thought I was original, ahh sweet disappointment. The New Republic recently pointed out Hillary strategist Mark Penn may have stole his marquee slogan from The Simpsons, Huffington Post writers compared each candidate’ plans to Bart’s empty playground promises. Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza blogged about the Simpson’s ‘mediocre presidents’ song. Jonah Goldberg wrote about them too. Academics have written articles and books on the subject. I can take scant pleasure in the knowledge that none of them were as arbitrary because they were too focused on “facts.” So here’s the rest of my “article.”

Grandpa: No freaking way would I try to interpret or care, what that old fart says.

Maggie: The only Simpson to ever shoot someone (who matters); if Maggie ever said more than one word (the movie and Halloween episodes don’t count) she would voice her support for gun rights and the independent John McCain.

Ned Flanders: Taking separation of church and state to heart, he never votes, picking one person over another just doesn’t jive with Flanders.

Sideshow Bob: The only Simpsons character to have successfully rigged an election in modern times would most certainly arrange the votes for either for himself or Mitt Romney, never mind if neither are official candidates.

Carl Carlson: “It’s all relative. Is Obama really that naive? Is Hillary really that frigid? Is McCain really even physically able to sleep with lobbyists? See, this is why I don’t talk much.”

Krusty the Clown: Publically kicked off of Hollywood’s Obama bandwagon following hundred of inappropriate jokes that culminated with the clown physically bludgeoning a young, disabled seal on live television to demonstrate (somehow) Obama’s message of hope.

Groundskeeper Willie: Wrong office, but he’s running: “If elected mayor my first act will be to kill the whole lot of ya, and burn yeh town to cinders.” Also in favor of man-tractor marriage. Really.

Otto Mann: Otto’s father is an admiral, just like McCain. But assuming he could make it to a polling place, Otto has none of the following: Driver’s license, identification of any kind or even underwear with his name on the band.

Lenny Leonard: A fellow war hero, Lenny could lean towards John McCain. But he also has a master’s degree; educated and white (Homer: “Lenny = white”) voters break heavily for Obama (excepting Mississippi). Not a Hillary Clinton supporter, because when women run the show Lenny can’t spit on the floor. His words, not mine.

Moe Szyslak: Would you really take voting advice from a bartender who accepts Alcoholics Anonymous chips as bar tender? The alcoholic was Barney and in all fairness his NASA-calculated tab was $14 billion, so it’s not like Moe thinks A.A. chips are worthless. Bookie Moe also gambles, extremely poorly and you can’t pick a worse bet than 500-to-one-shot Mike Gravel.

Barney: The town drunk favors Lord Palmsterston as Britain’s finest Prime Minister; Palmsterson was a liberal who rose rapidly to fame following a single powerful speech. Then again, it was defending the government’s naval bombardment of the Dutch and he was an interventionalist who didn’t think voting was a right. Thanks Wikipedia, still don’t know who he’d vote for. Let’s just say Ron Paul, okay?

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Can Obama fix it? Yes, we can!

March 4, 2008

So I’ve been putting this off for awhile now, but I wanted to share a few videos. I’m really interested in the last video, but the first couple help to set the mood.

Will.I.am’s “Yes, We Can” video – Directed by the fruit of Bob’s loins, Dylan of course. Had to find some way to get “Bob” in there… (If the acoustic guitar bothers you, but somehow a Capella doesn’t, try this)

Those concerned about the origins of the slogan “Yes, we can” can check out the Pointer Sisters version or the use of “Yes, we can” in Tartarstan or the Ceasar Chavez/Dolores Huerta/United Farm Workers here.

I first listened to the Will.I.am track a few weeks and millions of hits ago, the John McCain parodying versions also here then became fun for awhile, but got old very quick (not intended to be a comment.)

But then I made one of the big mistakes of my life and decided to listen to the “Bob the Builder” theme song. A rookie mistake, I’ll admit. Anyone with children experience would know better. But it’s been five days since I had something other than “Can we fix it? Yes, we can!” in my head and felt it only fair to do the same to others. Remarkable the staying power of that theme song.

Let me know about annoying videos that are stuck in your head, so hopefully I can stop singing Bob the Builder incessantly in my head every time I hear Barack Obama mentioned.

Mike Ellis
Columnist

Update, its now been more than an entire week (my whole freakin’ break!) and my only refuge from Bob the Builder is the even awfuller William Shatner’s “interpretation” of “Rocket Man.” Take that, brain!
P.S. the links actually work now!

Updated Update, I don’t think I’ve seen anyone else pick up on this yet, but in a 7th season episode (2005) of West Wing, the Democratic candidate finds out the Republican stole his slogan. Yes, you guessed it: “Yes, America can.” Close enough. They’re all active words, can and yes are as strong as you can get and we means together, so no one is surprised.

Why McCain needs Huckabee … to stay in

February 12, 2008

Please don’t count me as one of those people who think that former Gov. Mike Huckabee should drop out in deference in front runner Sen. John McCain. I just don’t think McCain is suffering too much for having Huck still in the race. Solo McCain is too big and tempting a target, just waiting to get hit by 527s and other outside hitmen or groups. Activists would have no alternative but political suicide to suggest and would be limited to calling for a third party candidate or attacking either McCain, Sen. Hilary Clinton or Sen. Barack Obama. There are too many unemployed pundits out there who would go for McCain’s jugular. With Huck in the race, Huck supporters and conservative bona fides have to at least pretend to play nice. If Huck bows out, the attack dogs come out. McCain isn’t afraid of attack dogs, he’s fought them his whole life. But McCain knows that attacks would be coming at him alone, Clinton and Obama’s attacks would be split between the two. Splitting the attacks gives the Democrats some cover and could offer them a natural Teflon to “swiftboating.” Of course McCain would like to be the only Republican in the race (eventually), but there is an advantage to having an undecided race for now. Huck does not enjoy the across-the-middle support that McCain does, but unless several Republicans are serious about supporting Democrats if McCain is on the ballot, Sen. McCain will have swayed them by November.

McCain without Huckabee has no reason to defend his conservative beliefs. With Huckabee in the race he gets to say how conservative he is and address the real concerns that the conservatives have with him. If Huckabee drops out today, then from tomorrow until November there will be no letting up. Democrats of all stripes will be out for McCain blood. There is no reason that the Republicans should have a target sitting up for the bloodbath, better to treat this as an inter-party fight than welcome the other party to the fight.

It’s far better for McCain to be the presumptive nominee while leaving Huck to take his share of the friendly fire. At least until the Democrats sort themselves out and pick a nominee, then it’s a real fight.

 

Mike Ellis

Columnist/Politics