Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Fred Thomson, Make-Believe Reagan

Matt Taibbi puts the candidacy of Fred Thompson, and the candidate himself, under a very bright light. The entire article is a must-read, but this part really slays me:
    ...What Thompson offers is a chance to drag the presidency itself into that bubble, leaving ugly reality behind. His campaign is basically a referendum on what America wants out of its president. Do we want an executive who solves problems and tackles issues, making decisions that are grounded in reality? Or do we want a lead actor to star in a television show about a fantasy America of our own creation, an America where poverty and war and insecurity can be solved simply by keeping them off camera?

    That is a heavy, heavy question, a theme straight out of dystopian fiction, and those of us who would vote for reality should be chilled by Thompson because we know that even if America votes for the fantasy, someone is still going to be running the reality...
Any candidate who has the ability to convince enough voters that the status quo is AOK is someone to be feared. And loathed.
    ...What Thompson is selling is escapism, pure and simple. He's selling America not as a vast adventure epic but as a timid, forty-seven-minute made-for-cable movie about a folksy small-town dad -- a fantasy that makes no sense at all in the context of a massive militarized oligarchy currently occupying half the world's deserts on borrowed money.

    The people who are buying this fantasy are buying out of fear, because they can't bear to look anymore. They've simply given up trying to deal. If Thompson wins -- and he very well might -- that's what it'll be: total surrender. The lowest we've ever sunk.

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