The Botereid

Friday, October 15, 2004

Team America

Quite a few people have been bewailing Team America's bashing sans partisan of the Terror War. Apparently, it's ok -- nay, more than ok -- to clearly manipulate the facts and rip things from context as long as it's in the context of defending a side -- namely, one's own. Fie, all the rotten bastards, I say. There are times in a day and in a life when you have to laugh at yourself. Kerry hit one of those at the end of the last debate and it actually resulted in humanizing him quite a bit. It's for those times that Oscar Wilde was right to say, "Life is too important to be taken seriously."

Eugene Volokh, in a post on one of the reviews, mentions the real sticking point for the left: the actors who are ridiculed for their activism. But I think it's pretty clear that active doesn't imply right. Parker and Stone's target isn't the right. It isn't the left. It's hypocrisy, and you can find that anywhere these days.

The reason I find Volokh's post interesting is for the second point, the reason for the mischaracterization of the actors in the movie. (Feel as you will, even as I do, but it is still a mischaracterization in a sense. I'm sure most of these actors support Kim Jong Il about as much as Bush desires to blow up Le Louvre.) It's simple, it's valid, but it'll never hold water in the eyes of the left. Castro always gets the break, despite his horrific record on all of the things that liberals defend here in the US. I love the irony of artists defending a dictator under whom they probably wouldn't have grown up to be artists.

It reminds me of the time I was speaking to a Cuban poet who had interviewed Tennessee Williams in the 70's. In the middle of the interview, Williams interrupted him and said, "You're Cuban, aren't you?" He replied that he was. "Then why," Williams asked, "aren't you in Cuba defending the Revolution?" I must say, it takes a fair amount of gut, and I don't mean values, to say that to a rafter (i.e. one who escapes Cuba by raft). The poet could only respond, "You realize that gays are thrown into prison in Cuba, don't you?" Williams, who was homosexual, became outraged at the very thought. No, not that it was happening, but that this Cuban could be maligning la RevoluciĆ³n. "I know Fidel," he trumpeted. "He would never do such a thing!"

Ah, yes, the moral clarity of today's artiste, the supposed "liberal", a stunted form of a word they do not understand.


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