Monday, January 30, 2006

Commander in Chief updated

Update:
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Flagging ratings have shelved the show till summer, but an interesting tidbit turned up.

Turns out there is a Clinton connection to the show after all...3 of them in fact.

The show’s lead writer, Steve Cohen, served as the then-first lady’s deputy communications director in the 1990s.

And two advisors have ties to the Clintons, former national security adviser Sandy Berger and Capricia Marshall, the former social secretary for the Clinton White.

I wouldn't call this a smoking gun by any means, and it isnt truly a direct connection so it does not fully justify my suspicians that this was a pre run for Hillary 2008. But it does explain the liberal tilt I noted below.

I also found it interesting that a group trying to get Rice to run was using the show also, with targeted advertising.

I think both parties want to test the water of a woman candidate.

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I have approached this show from a fairly cautious standpoint for a couple reasons.

First, Hollywood has shown a marked tendency to trash conservatives, and applaud liberals, so in trying to discern whether to take it seriously or not, I have to bear in mind that bias.

Second the premise of a woman is not distant reality in my opinion, particularly with Ms Clinton staging herself so carefully for what many see as in inevitable 2008 run.

In fact it would not surprise me to think they are paving the way with a safe Hollywood drama to grease the idea into the American consciousness. How many other concepts has the TV brought to day to day mind that later turned true?

In fact, as my memory serves me, it seems there was already a Democratic President who was aided greatly by television, both during his campaign as advisors and before hand with a little sitcom name dropping. In the sitcom Designing Women, one of the characters casually drops Clinton's name as Governor of Arkansas in several episodes. Now granted this was not as high rated as other shows, but still can we ignore this considering the Producer, Linda Bloodworth-Thomasan and her husband are long times friend of the then presidential hopeful?

And their influence was certainly felt as Clinton used a very savvy handling of the media to advance his campaign. Some of it was likely his own charisma, but he also had great advisors.

So now we have the president, played by Geena Davis. Is she the stand in for a new agenda? According to some articles I found, yes. Geena herself has been quoted as saying:

'We're making this as entertainment. But God willing, if this show stays on and people see a woman in that office for a while, I think it will help people become more used to it. It's certainly about time that we had a few female presidents.'

Now this seems more of a feminist agenda then a democratic, but the two camps share a lot of the picnic blanket, so I cant count it out.

And looking at the plot I am slightly more convinced this has an anti conservative agenda.

First, the Republican President picks her, a registered Independent as his running mate, reportedly as a way to score points with women voters. Of course, the republicans are tapped to be some what self serving here.

Of course the staff all has ideological issues with her. Of course the evil Republican Speaker of the house wants her to resign so he can ascend. Naturally the republicans resent her and want her gone. It's a a bit too simple of a stereotype.

They could have played her and the president as democrats and showed her to be a remarkable woman deserving of the office, truly the best choice. Maybe that would feel too obvious. I don't know.

But my early impression is not very positive.

One thing they show well is the struggle to decide what to do with the first husband.

All I know is that women are making more and more serious contributions to American politics, and Hillary Clinton is not the only woman seen as a contender. The powder puff presidential battle of Hillary vs Condi Rice is being whispered in many places.

The concept of Mrs President is certainly overdue, and should be taken seriously. If the show seeks to forward that, I applaud it, as I think a woman could bring some needed changes to the country, and I just don't see gender as being an elminating factor.

I just hope that C in C treats it as a serious issue, and doesnt degenerate it into a DNC tool.

To fight for a woman president is fine, if she has to be a democrat then I think you are again forcing limits where none need exist.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Blame Bush Game

This is my new favorite spectator sport: Blaming Bush.

It seems that a day cannot go by without something new being laid at his mighty feet and the blame settled squarely on his head.

Here are a few of my personal favorites:

Hurricanes Rita and Katrina, with honorable mention to Global Warming- It seems that the severe hurricane season is Bush's fault because of his environmental policies which cause global warming to swoop down on us in just a few years. Never Mind that the New York Times reported that experts have admitted that hurricane seasons come in waves of severity, and that recent years have been historically mild. Just Blame Bush, it's fun for the whole family.

The Sago Mine Tragedy- This one is Bush's fault because he reputedly eased mining safety measures. Ignore the fact that Mining is a hazardous occupation and that people have been dying for years in mines. Through the use of the games patented time twister, we can blame all those deaths on him too. They are working on an expansion pack to unclude WWII, the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and MTV.

North Korea's Nuclear weapons- Apparently this one is because Bush would not continue Clinton's "sunshine policy" when he came to office.

Iraq War- I would be remiss without mentioning this one. According to critics like Cindy Sheehan, Bush is to blame for every death there, as if he had pulled the trigger, because of his lies, and his policies to support Israel. Don't worry about proof, the Blame Bush Game has a reverse burden of proof threshold.

But the newest blame, and this is my personal favorite, comes to us from actor Sean Penn. Sean, speaking at a Sacramento anti war rally recently, is reported to have said that the stress of living under the current administration was making it tough for him to quit smoking.

Now, there you have it. Not only does Bush want to destroy the world with global warming, nuclear weapons and war, he also is trying to keep people smoking.

What a bastard. (rolling eyes)

Don't get me wrong, I am all for holding people accountable for their actions, and holding administrators accountable for the results of their policies, but it seems to me that this has gotten out of hand.

And in 2008 when he is gone, who will they blame then? Hillary? McCain? Kerry? Who will be the lucky office holder that gets to sit in the center square?

Maybe they will get really lucky and Jeb Bush will not only run, but win as well, and they can keep it in the family.

Maybe they will have to own up to some sense of responsibility and accountability, and let truth rule the day.

Maybe they will look at individual actions and consequences and make the logical connection.

Maybe they will look at a lot of it and see random accidents and decide it was just bad luck.

We can always use the Pat Robertson's old version of the Blame Game, and blame God. That one is a classic after all.