What is Really at Stake on November 6th?

The 24 hour news cycle is chock full of the spin on Presidential failures, attacks on the Romney campaign and the latest polling numbers. The national election draws near. But we are making a big mistake if we look at this election as a choice between two people. There is much more going on here, if we will step off the merry-go-round of modern media for just a few minutes.

The people and politics of America seem to me more divided than they have been at any time since the Civil War.  Since many Americans seem convinced that the issues of race and equality continue to plague us, we have, for the first time, an African-American president.  In 2008, many thought such an outcome would do much to heal that which seemed to divide us.  A milestone that would allow us to place contentious issues firmly into our past.  That it did not work in any way as intended should have served as a giant red flag for many that their assumptions about what was happening were flawed.  But they were not ready to see it.  May still not be ready.

What is really happening to America is not well understood, and is only superficially related to issues of race or class.  What we are seeing today is a fundamental clash between two groups holding dramatically incompatible world views.

The first of these world views I will choose to call “Classical Americanism”.  The big idea that has always defined the holders of this view is the desire for individual freedom and personal accountability. In this group are the folks who believe that the ideas that drove the creation of the United States over two centuries ago are every bit as vital and true as they were when they were first articulated.  They are self-made people, proud of their labor and its benefits for themselves and their families. They believe that their right to be free is inalienable – granted to them by God and/or their essential human nature.  Once upon a time in this country, this group would have comprised the vast majority of all Americans.  While this world view prevailed among its citizens, America prospered as no other nation before or since.

Over the last century, a new group has gradually emerged. They are marked most by their rejection of the traditional values of Classical Americanism.  As the nation’s wealth increased like no other, so did we gradually increase our government’s scope, believing in our ability to use it as a perfecting mechanism to ensure that wealth came with fewer social, political and environmental liabilities.  We did not at first have the capacity to perceive the consequent moral peril this has created for us today. With this increase in centralized power came an increase in the ability of the government to extract revenue from the economy. Those rejecting the traditional values of freedom and self-reliance were increasingly drawn to the growing capacity of government to alter the rules and redistribute wealth in our society.  Gradually, this new group coalesced around its shared interest in using the government to achieve their ends. I will call the world view held by this group “American Statism”.

By their very nature, the American Statists believe that their rights flow from government. They believe that government must ensure their safe passage through life, and in return for this security, they freely trade the rewards of liberty. They disavow the principles of classical Americanism, since they believe that everyone is entitled to security and benefits that only the state, not the individual, can furnish.  It is for these reasons that the statist seeks to deny American history, for the story of America is the story of Classical Americanism producing the most successful nation in the history of humanity by any meaningful measure. The idea that a society could permit one exceptional person to succeed beyond their dreams while their less-capable neighbor struggles with the basics in life is anathema to the statist.  In many ways, the emergence of the American Statist is a product of Classical Americanism, for it is the creation of great wealth that sets the stage for the illusion that it is possible to prosper without personal effort.  Indeed, the American statist believes that their ideology must replace that of their forebears if America is to reach their version of its lofty ideal of equality.

The American experiment with liberty has been an unqualified success. The idea that an individual could be completely free, such that they could fail completely, and therefore also succeed greatly, remains the single greatest political construct in the history of mankind. But this freedom is not free. It is won again each day with personal responsibility. Work must be done to ensure that needs are met; that freedoms are preserved.

What is at stake in this country on this election day is nothing less than the choice of direction between these two sets of ideas about the way lives should be lived.  Do we still believe in the power of individual liberty and personal responsibility? Or shall we empower the state to see to our needs, to relentlessly march us toward an ideal of equality of results, to a tyranny of conformity and subjugation as the state grows beyond the power of its subjects to restrain it?  Like never before, the American Statists are equipped to succeed in dismantling the Republic. They are led by a man committed to their ideals, who in four years has done much to tip the balance of the federal scales toward statism. They are aided and abetted by a corporate media alliance that is devoted to the statist agenda.  Four more years of this administration may place a return to first principles permanently out of reach to America.  Importantly, a political victory over the American Statists is only an opportunity to begin the work of restoring America. Much that was done over generations in service to lofty populist ideas must now be undone in service to preservation of the republic and individual freedom. This will be a hard fight, and enemies will come from every direction once livelihoods nurtured by our enormous government begin to be affected.

I would submit to you that while few of us have personal experience with a choice like this, it has been presented to humanity many times in the past. In search of a way to benefit from the efforts of others, societies have chosen to submit themselves to a powerful state, on the basis of the promise of ease and/or security. If there is one thing I would like all Americans to understand, it is that in the history of humanity, the subordination of one’s personal sovereignty to a statist authority, however benign in appearance, has never, not once, ended well.  In our case, it would prove to be the end of the greatest political experiment in the history of civilization, and even worse, it would happen on our watch.  Will Americans really vote to put the one true light of liberty out?

29 comments

  1. 1
    LC Gladiator growls and barks:

    “The Obama economic agenda failed not because it was stopped, but because it was passed.” – Paul Ryan

    Foist!!!

  2. 2
    Library Czar growls and barks:

    I was at 3 gun stores yesterday. One of the clerks made a comment that sales are up 300%. Went to pick up more canning supplies, the canning supplies looked like the social security fund after congress has been in session.

    In surfing around the Net I saw a very disturbing picture of a private citizen what looked like being arrested for posting a stupid video on youtube. There were five or six cops escorting him to the cop car. What in the hell were these cops thinking? Didn’t they take an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States? When told to go arrest this guy did any of them even say to their officers Hell No, he has first amendment rights. What are we arresting him for?

    Whats next arresting me because I used two ply toilet paper and the sewer Czar mandated one ply?

  3. 3
    sleeper growls and barks:

    Nicely written.

    {captain bring-down}
    The people who read it here are already aware of the perilous state of our liberty. This needs a wider audience, as do Bill Whittle’s videos. Unfortunately, even if this post was on the front page of USA Today, and Bill’s videos were on the nightly news broadcasts, too many people would not even understand what you (and he) are saying. Can you imagine trying to explain this choice to one of the teachers on strike on the street in Chicago? You would have better results explaining it to a jackass. The four-legged kind.
    {/captain bring-down}

    That doesn’t mean we give up. We need to make sure that people who can understand, do understand. We have to make sure that those who support statism can’t prevail by foul play. And it wouldn’t hurt to convince them to stay home on November 6.

    {no fake html tags….}

  4. 4
    Cougar1978 growls and barks:

    I can also try and surmize what is at stake.

    Boss, you do good as usual!

    Lemme add about my First Amendment Rights. They do not stop, when some thin-skinned c#nt-drip gets their thong up their crack or goes apleptic when G_O_D is mentioned, as opposed to Allah or spirit of Mother Earth. They should not arrest or detain the filmmaker of the so-called riot starting anti-Mohammed film. I’d say the guy may need protective custody, otherwise he’ll end up like Theo Van Gogh did or even the late Andrew Breitbart.

    My 2nd Amendment Rights are not at the whim of some teleprompter handicapped pussy who cannot spell Ruger, let alone pick up one with those pipecleaner arms of his. My 2nd Amendment was set up due to lessons learned from The British overstepping their rule over the colonies, and that resulted in a Revolution, a bitch slap, then the War of 1812, and royal rogering at The Battle of New Orleans. The Brits then turned to kicking the Frenchies asses instead of ours, for a while.

    My right to religion is not defined by some out of context, separation of church and state bullshit. Congress has not ever established a religion. ESTABLISH means my funds go to the state-sponsored and created church. Like The Anglicans, Czarist Orthodox, or how about present day Iran. Wanna try separation of church and state, go to Tehran and Mecca you passive aggressive ass pustules of the Ass Crack Lickers Union- ACLUseless. Oh that’s right, you’re cowards and you try “soft targets.” You go after weaking city councils, pussy principals, and now corrupted and infiltrated veterans or town organizations….. yeah, wait til we get mobilized, and you motherfuckers will be up shit fucking creek, sans paddle, and a big ass wave about to upend your stupid fucking asses! To The Freedom From Religion Foundation, go fuck yourself with a rusty fucking sword and a spike-covered dildo!

    States Rights are not limited to the whim of the Federal Government. The States DO NOT have to endorse or pay for Socialist Medicine. They do not have to recognize Holy Fagimony or Lesbo Marriage or even Bestiality Blessings. States are great, because you federal fucksticks ARE NOT in charge. When you get in charge, like FEMA or IRS or other BS, we tend to get fucked. And don’t let The Civil War from 1861-1865 fool you, if you fuck with the “Flyover Country” too much, remember this….. We have the guns, we have food, we have more people, and we have most of the fucking military. Bring it the fuck on you jizz sucking Leninist vag-pimples!

    OK, I know I’ve sugar-coated, but when I get PISSED then you’ll really know how I feel!

    Remember, libs, Jesus loves you but knows you’re assholes!

  5. 5
    Fa Cube Itches growls and barks:

    What’s really at stake?

    The question of who is sitting in the pilot’s seat when we slam into the mountain of debt and stupid economic policies.

    The math is what it is. Zimbabwe Ben’s “QE to infinity and beyond!” shows that NO ONE in Washington is serious about it. Hell, even Ryan the supposed budget hawk talks largely about “growing our way” out of this. 50% of the government has to go, right now, and even then that only keeps things from getting worse – it doesn’t actually fix anything.

    Think the elderly are going to be happy with SS and Medicare cuts? Think politicians aren’t aware of how big a voting bloc they are? Think farmers are going to be happy to lose subsidies? Think blacks will be happy to see half of the government jobs eliminated? Think the FSA will be happy to lose all the freebies? Think they won’t riot? Think all the federal pensioners will be happy to see their pensions go? Think none of the above will sue, or that the courts won’t largely side with them?

    I’ll grant that Romney is better on foreign policy, and probably will do what he can to check the degeration of our society, but economically….it won’t really matter much. Obama’s worse, but Romeny can’t perform miracles.

  6. 6
    LC TerribleTroy growls and barks:

    Well done LC SecondMouse.

  7. 7
    LC Spare Parts growls and barks:

    The horrid fact is, we cannot defeat a polity driven by emotional investment in economic and social fairy tales by Voting. All the legal and cultural institutions are controlled by them. The majority of the current populace will never accept Conservative governance until all the national wealth is consumed or destroyed, and probably not even then. Their model of society is the nursery school sandbox where everyone gets a level pail full, and he who dares to get ahead of his fellows receives violent death at the hands of the moronic mob. My idiot neighbor will vote for Obama solely because he will tax people he hates. He told me, “they’re not better than us.” And he believes they shouldn’t be Allowed to live any better than him, just like that ratbag bitch in the film of Dr. Zhivago. Romney will lose this election and we will lose what was Our country due to childish resentment harbored by infantile malcontents who refuse to engage life and COMPETE. Their end is not about what they claim they want. It’s about what they don’t: That awful Thing we know as RESPONSIBILITY.

  8. 8
    The Irish Dragoness growls and barks:

    Very well articulated!

  9. 9
    LC Gladiator growls and barks:

    JOHN HINCKLEY ‘S RELEASE

    Nancy Reagan regarding John Hinckley’s release: We could all learn so much from this elegant and gracious lady.

    You might recall that John Hinckley was a seriously deranged young man who shot President Reagan in the early 1980′s. Hinckley was absolutely obsessed with movie star Jodie Foster, and, in his twisted mind, loved Jodie to the point that to make himself well known to her, he attempted to assassinate President Reagan.

    There is speculation Hinckley may soon be released as having been rehabilitated.
    Consequently, you will appreciate the following letter from Nancy Reagan to John Hinckley:

    To: John Hinckley
    From: Mrs. Nancy Reagan

    My family and I wanted to drop you a short note to tell you how pleased we are with the great strides you are making in your recovery. In our country’s spirit of understanding and forgiveness, we want you to know that we bear no grudge against you for shooting Ronnie.

    We are fully aware that mental stress and pain could have driven you to such an act of desperation. We’re confident that you will soon make a complete recovery and return to your family to join the world again as a healthy and productive man.

    Best wishes,
    Nancy Reagan & Family

    P.S. While you have been incarcerated, Barack Obama has been banging Jodie Foster like a screen door in a tornado. You might want to look into that.

  10. 10
    LC Gladiator growls and barks:

    Anyone following the presidential campaign through the prism of media polls is doing themselves a serious disservice. Virtually every one uses a polling sample that is so heavily-skewed towards Democrats that it distorts the actual state of the campaign. Of course, that is a feature, not a bug of the polls. The polls are specifically designed to drive a narrative that Obama is surging and Romney is struggling. Increasingly, though, the polls are having to go to ridiculous efforts to support this meme. Friday’s CBS/New York Times poll, for example, uses a D+13 sample of registered voters. This is absurd.

    In 2008, an historic election wave for Democrats, the electorate was D+7. In 2004, when George W. Bush won reelection, the electorate was evenly split. In other words, D+0. Repeat after me; the Democrat share of the electorate is not going to double this year. Given the well-noted enthusiasm edge for Republicans this year, the electorate is going to be far closer to the 2004 model than 2008. Any poll trying to replicate the 2008 is going to artificially inflate Obama’s support.

    CBS does apply a Likely Voter screen to the head-to-head match up. The LV sample is D+6, similar to the make up of the 08 election. In that, Obama leads Romney by just 3 points, 49-46. In the RV sample, which more than doubles the proportion of Democrats to D+13, Obama leads by 8 points, 51-43. See the simple relationship there?

    Let’s try a simple thought experiment. Imagine if, for a week, all media polls decided to use a sample that replicated the 2004 electorate–a D+0 model. Given the GOP’s enthusiasm edge–even the CBS poll found Republicans voters with a double-digit lead on enthusiasm for the election–the electorate is going to look a lot more like 2004 than 2008. Imagine how the narrative of the campaign would change. The CBS poll found Romney beating Obama among Independents by 11 points. With a balanced partisan sample, Romney would likely post consistent leads against Obama.

    A week of this and Politico would run out of fuel for its daily “Romney is struggling” theme. Which is why the media will never adjust its samples. This election, it isn’t so much about polling as propaganda. The polls are simply a tool being used by the media to try to depress GOP turnout and give a powerful lift to Obama’s obviously lackluster campaign.

    The polls confirm that the media aren’t really biased. Rather, they are active players for the other team.

  11. 11
    LC Robohobo growls and barks:

    LC Gladiator @ #:

    That is too funny! :em05:

  12. 12
    LC_Salgak growls and barks:

    One way or the other, THIS election is going to be pivotal. I’ve come to the conclusion that we’re headed for a Collapse no matter WHO wins, but voting for Mittens, while hardly optimal, will make it survivable.

    I don’t want to even THINK about the results if the Sun King actually wins, or more likely cheats, his way into a second term. The fraud would HAVE to be so flamingly obvious that the Second Civil War will likely be starting within months, if not immediately.

    On the other hand, I already expect riots when The Won loses, and again on Inauguration Day.

    Either way, we must all stay vigilant, keep our powder dry and store up supplies to last through a LONG bad patch. It’s not going to be pretty, either way, but one path gives us a chance, the other is a guaranteed death-spiral. . .

  13. 13
    Tallulah growls and barks:

    Thank you, SecondMouse. That is brilliant, eloquent, and passionate: it’s so perfectly pitched that I’m going to mail it to my (mostly) Democrat niece, a good kid; also to the other nieces and my nephew.

    I will ask them to read it and think it over.

    It’s perfectly pitched because you say everything that is at the core of our crisis without calling names: it’s a sober, extremely level-eyed look at what this is all really about: Americans versus the International Left, which is the latest incarnation of Mass Envy, trying to enslave the Free People.

    That personal liberty that we here love is the MOST RADICAL POLITICAL IDEA ON THE PLANET.

    The True “reactionaries” are the Leftist pillagers and thieves, totalitarians, dictators, all that noise. They make common cause with the totalitarian moslems because they roll pretty much the same way: Power is their heroin, and they mainline it. The Leftists, be they Communist or Fascist, abandon all pretense of caring about “human rights” when it comes to embracing the satanic cult known as islam.

    That’s where I spied ‘em. That’s how I smelt ‘em out. As our Lord said: “By their fruits shall ye know them.” They are intensely racist, judgemental, power-mad, misogynist, intolerant, and violent.

    Isn’t it amazing? How malleable people are? That a bunch of humans born and raised in AMERICA could turn out like this? I still can’t believe it. Two of my cousins, for example, are Obami (a good name for the cultists, don’t you think?). Brought up as Southerners by patriotic Republican parents. Old enough to have been taught some (mostly) accurate history: and they bought the Jim Jones routine. They refuse to accept any emails; they’ve pulled up the drawbridge to keep out any disturbing information from those of us who are still Americans.

    That’s just it, you see. This is about the Real Americans versus the Looters and the Power-mad. Not about “rightwing vs. progressive” and all that crap.

    I agree that Romney won’t be able, certainly not by himself, to save us: he can buy us some time and, with God’s help, steer us through some Class 7 rapids ahead. But it might be God’s will to let us learn the lessons of straying from the true path, like the Israelites He left to wander the Sinai desert until all the generation that had rebelled against Him had passed away.

    Gird your loins, friends. Oh, how I love my country. My people have been here since the Jamestown settlement: she is our dear heart’s home. Men in my family have been fighting and dying for America since the French and Indian wars, right up to the first Gulf War. I am torn between fury and heartbreak that we have come to this pass.

  14. 14
    LC_Salgak growls and barks:

    Tallulah. . .

    You’re spot-on. This really is the choice between the Ants and the Grasshoppers. And God help us all if the Grasshoppers win. . . .

  15. 15
  16. 16
    LC Grammar Czar, G.L.O.R. growls and barks:

    I think I’ve got the imperial title for secondmouse: Imperial Purveyor of Good Sense.

  17. 17

    Cougar1978 @ # 4: DAYUM! That was nearly as good as the original article! Not quite, but nearly.

    SecondMouse, you are indeed a well worthy addition to the Imperial Staff. Damn that one was superb. That was what should be being taught in college, not the crap that currently is. But, as you know, that is exactly WHY the crap being taught is. The intent is to destroy the education, then rule the drooling masses.
    LC cmblake6, Imperial Black Ops Technician recently posted..In trying to be a compendium of facts,My Profile

  18. 18

    LC Gladiator says:

    P.S. While you have been incarcerated, Barack Obama has been banging Jodie Foster like a screen door in a tornado. You might want to look into that.

    :em01: :em05: :em01: :em05: :em01: :em05:
    LC cmblake6, Imperial Black Ops Technician recently posted..In trying to be a compendium of facts,My Profile

  19. 19

    Tallulah @ # 13: And I was about to take a clip and comment on yours, but I couldn’t really pick only one piece. I feel so absolutely proud to be in a group of minds such as The Empire.
    LC cmblake6, Imperial Black Ops Technician recently posted..In trying to be a compendium of facts,My Profile

  20. 20
    1IDVET growls and barks:

    Nicely done. :em01:
    I hope America wakes the fuck up.
    1IDVET recently posted..Today’s Reading List (09-17-12)…My Profile

  21. 21
    LC Jackboot IC/A growls and barks:

    SecondMouse- That’s about as good a piece I’ve read in a long, long time. Simply OUTFUCKINGSTANDING.

    They are led by a man committed to their ideals, who in four years has done much to tip the balance of the federal scales toward statism

    True enough, however I would submit that they’ve been working towards this moment for 40+ years. Obama merely by accident of history was in the right place at the right time to attempt bringing on their end game. I would suggest that it’s possible that Obama will also be their downfall (or at least major setback). A more competent leader installed into position might not have placed their plans in the risky state they are now.

    sleeper says:

    too many people would not even understand what you (and he) are saying. Can you imagine trying to explain this choice to one of the teachers on strike on the street in Chicago? You would have better results explaining it to a jackass. The four-legged kind.

    Absolutely accurate, even if they were capable of understanding this, the ideological ADD programmed into them would reject it out of hand. That’s another feature of the statist model, the inability to comprehend concepts that need to be explained in more than a sentence. These folks have no interest in the truth, their ideology trumps it.

    Tallulah says:

    Isn’t it amazing? How malleable people are? That a bunch of humans born and raised in AMERICA could turn out like this?

    Amazing and disturbing both, as I said above, it’s the work of a few generations by 5th columnists that we just didn’t see coming. Perhaps (IMHO) the weakest aspect of Conservatism is that in our desire to live and play by established rules somewhat diminishes the ability to immediately see the malefactors and their machinations. Socialism intentionally plays into the flaws of human nature. Greed and especially envy are encouraged using the false narrative of class. They provide the means for slovenly and slothful behavior by income redistribution, where the recipients provide nothing to obtain the fruits of their neighbors labor. They are told that they are ‘owed’ compensation for past injustices, the reparation movement was the most egregious example of this concept.

    One can not help but notice that the statist movement must replace religion as it permits individuals to violate many of the seven deadly sins. Our freedom from religion crowd are useful idiots to the movement in this respect.

    Our experiment in self-governance is totally dependent on the morality of the people. The leftist movement is dependent on glossing-over or erasing that morality. They have gained much power by appealing to and consolidating many of these ‘single-issue’ groups into a voting bloc. If one had any doubt the freak show disguised as the DNC was proof positive.

    LC Spare Parts says:

    The horrid fact is, we cannot defeat a polity driven by emotional investment in economic and social fairy tales by voting.

    As old Wil wrote “Therein lies the rub” I fear those invested in the fairy tale of endless skittles from Obama’s stash has reached critical mass, that point where productive citizens cannot vote our way out of ‘bread and circuses’ for all. The horror comes with the realization of what it will take to redeem our beloved Republic. We must consider that our Tree of Liberty is very nearly in need of feeding my friends.

    LC cmblake6, Imperial Black Ops Technician says:

    I feel so absolutely proud to be in a group of minds such as The Empire.

    I do too and I often feel unworthy of my status here. The Boss and I always remind ourselves that we have the absolute BEST readers anywhere. I’m honored to be a small part of it.
    LC Jackboot IC/A recently posted..And now for something completely differentMy Profile

  22. 22
    Tallulah growls and barks:

    Dear God.

    Justice Department Official Refuses to Rule Out Criminalization of Blasphemy Against Islam
    —Ace

    !!!

    !!!

    Bonus: Egypt pushes for strengthening of anti-blasphemy clause.

    Never forget this is their goal, and they seek this as it is a foundational part of sharia.

    –Ace

    Holy fucking shit.

  23. 23
    Tallulah growls and barks:

    LC Jackboot IC/A @ #:

    One can not help but notice that the statist movement must replace religion as it permits individuals to violate many of the seven deadly sins. Our freedom from religion crowd are useful idiots to the movement in this respect.

    THIS is another link in the unholy alliance between the Left and Islam. Both creeds preach to their followers that their basest instincts are not only allowed, but divinely sanctioned. Oh, they split it up in different ways, but that’s at the root of the appeal of both cults.

    There was a great line in The African Queen, spoken by (missionary) Katherine Hepburn to the hung-over Humphrey Bogart: “Nature, Mr. Allnut, is what we were put in this world to rise above.” (Ouch!) That Christian (and Buddhist, in another way) philosophy is what they detest.

    “Allah” tells them that they can rape, pillage, and murder, all in its name; Leftism tells them that every kind of sexual depravity is perfectly fine, and so are all forms of drug-use and drunkenness; covetousness is not only excused but encouraged, and both tribes make an art form of rage.

    We may very well lose this election: we’re up against a whole lot of people who have been corrupted in their minds and hearts. Remember character-building? that used to be a prime directive of child-rearing and yes, our public schools. Just watch any old episode of “Leave It to Beaver,” and you’ll see the classic American, Christian concepts of how to behave being gently and humorously taught (the show’s writers based the episodes on their adventures with their own kids).

    Now? we have abominations like “The New Normal,” in which a young woman agrees to be artificially inseminated by a homosexual, and then gives her baby to the man and his lover. (By the way — you should all know that homosexual men almost NEVER adopt little girl babies. Only boy babies. Think about that.)

    I’ve been watching a lot of Antenna TV, y’all. Discovered it on cable a month ago. Burns & Allen, Jack Benny, Leave It to Beaver, and other stalwarts of the 1950s – 1960s. Amazing how much purer the entertainment was in those years. Sweet, really. Dare I say wholesome?

  24. 24
    LC Gladiator growls and barks:

    Congresswoman Michele Bachmann may no longer be running for the White House, but she’s got a message to send to the current Oval Office occupant.

    Skip Letterman. Talk to Netanyahu.

    “And President Obama needs to get his priorities straight. What he needs to do is cancel his planned interview with David Letterman, cancel his meeting with Beyonce, cancel his meeting with Jay Z, and instead agree to meet with the Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu, because you see, America and Israel have a commonality of interests,” Bachmann said.

  25. 25
    Fa Cube Itches growls and barks:

    Tallulah @ #:

    Amazing how much purer the entertainment was in those years. Sweet, really. Dare I say wholesome?

    It is that, but that also makes it rather boring. To compare it to popular culture icons, that sort of thing is a lot like Superman (the classic version, at least). Yes, he’s honest, brave-ish (he can’t be hurt so he’s not really risking anything), polite, patriotic, etc. The problem is that he’s ultimately unintersting because he’s such a goody-goody. He’s absolutely predictable.

    Contrast that with someone like Batman – he’s much more complex, not as objectively good, though far braver (because he can be hurt), etc. You don’t know exactly how he’s going to act in any given situation, so he’s more interesting.

    The problem with modern entertainment is that is has forgotten *why* the darker, less-crystal-clear stuff is interesting. It’s not because it’s dark, it’s because it’s complex – it makes you think (at least if you’re a thinking person). You can see it repeated everywhere: if one well-written gross out comedy is successful, it will spawn dozens of imitators that think “if gross worked, even more gross will be even more hilarious!” Maybe – but if it isn’t interesting on some level, it won’t be. Same with gore, sex, anything. If you stop and think about it – porn is just like Superman and Leave it Beaver – you know exactly how each one is going to end.

  26. 26
  27. 27
    Tallulah growls and barks:

    Fa Cube Itches @ #:

    I know what you mean about complexity, etc., and those are good points.

    But I hadn’t seen Leave It to Beaver since I was a child, and I was surprised and impressed that it was actually pretty realistic: the show’s writers used incidents from their own kids’ lives as the material. And they did let the parents have mixed characteristics: you often hear Ward say that he got into various kinds of trouble growing up, and he and June butt heads sometimes over what they should allow the boys to do: they face various ethical dilemmas in the small-scale way you do in the fifth grade, and there’s a warm sense of humor about the whole business.

    I miss it. It’s like your grandmother’s afghan: warm and cozy, with only a couple of moth holes: but you can poke your toe through that big one and tease the cat.

    I guess I would say that there’s room for the sweet stuff, too: and it’s all been firehosed out of the TV rosters. Now it’s ALL grue and gore and fucking strangers and serial killers and gross-out comedy. Even when it’s “clever and well-done” I’m turning it off more and more. Just fed up to the back teeth with it all.


Other websites that have referenced this:

(Always a sign of good taste -- especially since they bothered to link to us) Go Check them out
  1. And for an absolutely incredible bit of writing « Cmblake6's Weblog
  2. Saturday Afternoon – Very Mini Version – Laundry Time , An Ol' Broad's Ramblings