Saturday, September 13, 2008

The problem with accepting the general lack of intelligence of the public about politics and government is that you are left with feeling cynical. I accept that this is the trade off. Either I believe in the basic decency and innate intelligence of people and then am constantly upset and disappointed, or I think most people are idiots – get a better night’s sleep, but go on my dog walk in the morning and feel superior and cynical. I am not used to feeling this way. Of course I am painting this in extremes. But it’s unsettling.

I got a GREAT night’s sleep last night. I imagined John McCain in office. I tried to accept it in my mind as a possible outcome. Hey, I’d probably sell more copies of Letting Go of God! People’s righteous anger at the establishment would be fueled more with a Republican!

Hmmm… Sooooo not worth it.

And now I’m feeling slimey. I am not used to this cynical way of looking at things – at least not this DEEPLY cynical. I am going to try to take the weekend off from thinking about it.

For the first time I really, really wished I were still on SNL because Obama was going to be on it tonight. But now this is cancelled because of the hurricanes. Apparently he will still appear before the election. I loved the View ladies with McCain, although I thought they let him get away with way too much! They asked tough questions but then they let him spin it too far into his schpeel. He repeated the ridiculous assertion that Palin was referencing Abraham Lincoln when she spoke to her church about the war.

It made me fantasize about the moment when Palin’s media coach came to her with that idea. “You know, maybe you were really just referencing Abraham Lincoln at that church. He said we should be not be praying that God is on our side but that we are on God’s side.” I want to slow the camera down, I want her to blink in a close up. What went through her mind? Is this just a game to her? Did she have any moment of self-reflection at all where she thought – wow, that’s not what I meant, but that will sound good. Is there any cognitive dissidence at all? Is she aware that she’s lying? Is there any type of jerk inside her when she repeats this to people?

My husband says he doesn’t think people who are religious know the difference between praying that God is on our side and praying that we are on God’s side. Wow. Is that possible? He said, that’s the genius of Abraham Lincoln. People who actually understand the difference between those two things are probably skeptics. But it sounds appealing to religious people, it appears humble. OH!!!!!! I wish Charlie Gibson had asked her, “What is the difference to you between those two Abraham Lincoln statements about God?” THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN SO GREAT.

In any case, I was so proud of the View ladies. It just underscored how the media in general is so light handed. Everyone I know is talking like the View ladies are talking, and Jesus Christ, we are talking about the VIEW LADIES. These are main stream people!!! It was such a breath of fresh realistic air to have them asking McCain questions like they did, even if they didn’t follow up the way I wanted them to. Just that they were asking was jarring – we are not used to this on TV!

All right. I’m going to try to let it allllll gooooo today. And yes, of course I wish I were still on SNL and ten years younger and Tina Fey wasn’t there and I could play Sarah Palin. But Tina is going to nail it. I am so excited to watch tonight.


Anonymous said...

I can't wait to see SNL tonight. We all need to laugh a bit at this point. I might actually stay up late to watch the show instead catching it on Tivo.

If I were religious I'd pray that Michael Phelps only wears a Speedo the whole time. Is that too much to ask? If there really were a god I'm sure he'd understand.

Ron Strelecki said...

"cognitive dissidence" - FTW!

What upsets me most about the whole business was that it totally and completely took the air out of Obama's speech. He declared a vision of a path to energy independence in 10 years. That's 10 times bigger than landing on the moon. I thought the whole country would be debating that one the next day... nope. And now it's like the whole country is in eighth grade.

Did you hear what Barack wore to school today? Oh... my... Gah! Does he think he can pull that off? I don't think soooo!

Here's two things to take your mind off of it... One: On Being Certain: Believing You are Right Even When You're Not by Robert A. Burton, M.D. It is the first book to examine the separation of being right and feeling right. People think that the more they "feel" right about something the more right they must therefore be. Turns out that that feeling is almost entirely disconnected from reality. Some people just "feel" they are right merelyy because they think it.

Two: The Kaossilator by Korg. Go to a music store and buy one. You don't need to know how to play an instrument, you just press the touchpad and it starts pounding out techno-music. I hated techno music until I started making it on this thing. Srsly!

joe said...

"It made me fantasize about the moment when Palin’s media coach came to her with that idea. "

we think alike - I run these scenarios of what goes on behind the scenes in my head all the time.

one i've been thinking about recently is what would happen in a private conversation between Obama and McCain, like if Obama just called him up on his cell phone.

Obama: "John - what the hell, dude? What's with this Education ad you're running? You know that's not what the bill was for!"

McCain: "well, Barack. You did vote for the bill, and it is on the public record, and -"

Obama: "John, seriously, cut the shit. You're talking to me, not the media. What are you trying to do here?"

McCain: "ok, ok ok, okokokokok. i'm sorry man, i feel terrible about this. But I have Karl Rove up my ass all day, and my manager Rick Davis is a douchebag and he's the one making the ads, and now Sarah is by my side 24/7 and her whiny, shrill little voice makes me want to rip my hearing aids out. It's a fucking madhouse over here, B. I don't know what to tell you"

judith said...

Amen sista! Wouldn't it be great if during election time when a candidate started slinging mud and twisting their words they would instantly fall through a hole in the earth to never be heard from again? And then only the true of heart, and not the egoistical would win out. But that could only happen in a cartoon....

Marjolaine Hébert said...

Yes, Julia, I could see you doing the SNL skit as I read your words. You must surely miss it at times!
And..I think your husband is right. Sadly, religion doesn't have peripheral vision...

HaroldsMaude said...

I caught part of her interview with "Charlie" last night and was stunned (why should I be at this point) when he asked her about cutting government spending. Once again, she has no clue about how the federal government or the programs that distribute funds are administered. Her answer was like the one my daughter gave about World War II when she was in 3rd grade:

What happened in WWII?

It was a bad war. Many people died. Bad people fought good people. And then it was over.

Sarah Palin offered about as much detail on cutting government spending in her discussion of 'efficiencies.'


Laura said...


I just randomly ran into your site and realized that we were writing about very similar issues today.
I couldn't agree with you more.



Anonymous said...

The mere thought of Mccain and Palin in the white house makes me want to throw up. It will be nice to get a break from all this dry heaving and have a good laugh with friends tonight. And I too, hope Michael Phelps is in a speedo all night.

Whit said...

Let's hope Lorne doesn't permit another Fred Armisten Obama smear job, nor bring on the real Sarah Palin to confront Tina doing her impression to a hearty s.o.

Anonymous said...

When Palin was talking about abortion and "a culture of life", I soooooo wanted Charlie say "so you're opposed to the death penalty?"

Why do they miss the obvious question so often?

Sheldon said...

Well, I watched SNL last night. Tina Fey did an okay job of portraying Palin. It wasn't "Dick in a Box" funny, but it was good. The size difference between Fey and Palin was a big surprising. Given enough time, I think Palin will continue to make stupid statements in public (e.g., being against the "Bridge to Nowhere") that they'll probably have to bring Tina Fey back a few more times...if she'll do it. Or, they could just hire other actresses who look like her and keep the joke going. I still think she looks a lot like Megan Mullally, the woman who played Karen Walker on "Will & Grace". She also reminds some people of Lorraine Bracco, the therapist from "The Sopranos." Or, they could do an animated scene with "Peggy Hill" (the mother on "King of the Hill") doing her.

If the Republicans do nothing else for us (and they certainly don't seem to be able to), they provide plenty of fodder for entertainment.

joe said...

Tina Fey was spot on. I knew she could get the look down, but she nailed the voice too.

and it's not like she will have to travel very far to play Palin in the future. I mean.... she still works in the same building as SNL

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Personally, I can watch Tina Fey, but I cannot watch Palin. The whole thing really makes me physically ill. How can this be happening? At first I thought it must be a joke, then I thought that it was just too ridiculous and Americans would see through the whole thing and I thought yes! Yes, now Obama will go all the way. Now I'm just afraid.

Anonymous said...

I can watch Tina Fey, but I am physically unable to watch the "real" Palin. The whole thing makes me sick. At first I thought it was a joke, then I thought, Yes! Yes, Obama is going to go all the way! I hoped it would seem ridiculous even to conservatives. Now it seems too crazy to be real and I'm just afraid.

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