Film, TV and the Arts

Film, TV and the Arts

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Hollywood D.C.

The U.S. Congress has turned its hand to making entertainment first and legislation second

I’m unaware of what the theatre situation is in Washington D.C., but, if there is one, the plays can’t be up to much, as the Congress seems to be determined to make its own entertainment.

Latterly, it was the Budget, saved at the last hour by another continuing resolution, which did what every Hollywood studio executive wants: it left room for a sequel. However, the good men and women of the 112th congress had another idea: a spin off.

Cue this month’s extravaganza: 2011 – A Debt Odyssey. It has the same characters from the much-loved original series (The “Bankruptcy Begins” Saga), but in a completely different crisis.

Essentially, the plot is simple: common sense must prevail before midnight on Monday night. However, this being Hollywood D.C., this cannot happen until there have been debates, public spats, face-to-face showdowns and, of course, that final countdown to midnight. It’s compelling stuff.

Of course, in the modern day, politicians are celebrities. Remember the McCain ad from the 2008 campaign targeting Obama: “He’s the biggest celebrity in the world, but is he ready to lead?” A foolish move from McCain to bring in the celebrity comparison, because Barack Obama looks and feels like a black George Clooney, whereas John McCain looks and feels like, well, John McCain.

However, whilst the modern day celebrity has made the journey from vacuity to duty, the modern day politician has made the journey from duty to vacuity. This is one of simplest examples of common sense governance being required which I have come across in my life, and it has been greeted with a ludicrous performance.

One can only hope that this piece is quickly out-dated. In the meantime, this is predominately an arts blog, so I can only ask, how would you cast the film of this? After all, this seems to be one of the politicians’ primary concern.

Having written this piece, my attention was drawn to this excellent clip from The West Wing on the question of the debt ceiling.

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