By Rich Trzupek
It will be interesting to track the reactions of the mainstream media and their allies in Hollywood over the next four years. Surely things will “change”, but perhaps not in the ways we expect, or rather not in the ways that will be (and have been) presented to us.
In your humble correspondent’s end of the world, for example, the EPA will go chugging along as it always has. The air, water and soil will continue to get cleaner, as they did under President Bush, as they did under President Clinton, and so on and so on. The difference will be that President Obama will be hailed as an environmental savior, for doing exactly the same thing as President Bush: letting EPA do its job.
The one big difference will be greenhouse gas legislation, which was pretty much inevitable no matter who won the election anyway. Now understand that greenhouse gas legislation won’t do a thing to actually reduce greenhouse gases in any noticeable way. It’s really just a means to redistribute wealth generated by the coal industry. That being the case, as long as the President and Congress don’t get too greedy, to the point that they kill the geese that lay those golden carbon eggs, they’ll get their “planet saving” law, suddenly notice that the planet has been getting cooler as of late, and claim credit for the happy result.
One has to believe that President Obama is a savvy enough politician to understand that it would be idiotic to follow a timetable to withdraw from Iraq now, when it’s obvious to everyone this side of Harry Reid that we – and most importantly the Iraqi people – are winning. If he has any aspirations for a second term, there would be no surer way to ensure a GOP victory in 2012 than leaving Iraq hanging in the breeze, bringing back painful memories of Saigon circa 1975.
Prediction: the President will call for withdraw of “combat troops” within the sixteen (or was it eighteen?) month window he promised. We will, however, leave “advisors”, or “trainers”, or whatever, in place to assist the Iraqi army in a “transition phase” and subsequently announce that the Iraqis are now taking care of themselves. American “advisors” might amount to III Corps supported by two carrier groups, along with three Air Force wings, but will the media or Hollywood notice the subterfuge? Methinks not.
These examples give way to another interesting question: what kind of movies will we get out of Hollywood over the next four years? They’ve given us a plethora of anti-war, “America is a blood-thirsty, sinister nation bent on world domination in the name of corporate greed” films that have gone, well, nowhere.
Conservative screenwriter/director John Nolte runs one of yours truly’s favorite web sites: www.dirtyharrysplace.com. Nolte offers delightful insights about the inner workings and questionable dealings in tinsel town, along with commentary on a variety of topics from a thoughtful, conservative point of view.
One theme that runs through Nolte’s commentary is the way that anti-war pics continually bomb. Redacted, Lions for Lambs, Body of Lies and others of their ilk have bled red ink. Or, as Nolte puts it: “The public’s soooo got Hollywood’s number and we know exactly what’s coming when the trailer’s all about meterosexuals running around the desert wearing ear pieces.”
Simple economics would seem to dictate that, at some point, Hollywood needs to start producing movies that appeal to audiences a bit larger than Sean Penn and Al Franken. God forbid they should give us a flick featuring terrorists as the bad guys, rather than as misunderstood, exploited peasants. That plainly won’t do under the new order.
So what then? Perhaps there will be a script featuring a brave Iraqi who initially fought against the Anglo-American coalition, but then – thanks to his humanity, the love of a good woman and the help of a gutsy American soldier who refuses to cow-tow to his racist commander – he decides that it’s time to fight for Iraq. “You took our dignity from us,” he explains to his G.I. buddy. “Now, I will return it to my nation and my family.”
This would blend smoothly with President Obama’s stated goal of returning responsibility for Iraq security to solely Iraqi control ASAP. If there is a “Film Approval Board” in the new administration (which would surprise this reporter not a whit) this kind of script is sure to win quick approval.
It’ll be fun to watch the action over the next four years. You’re also invited to join me at Dirty Harry’s, where my wit and wisdom can be found on threads from time to time. (And I won’t tell you the handle I use there, because if you can’t figure it out, you need to stop reading this column right now and find an adult to lock up all the sharp objects in your home). One tip, if you post there: don’t mess with Stephanie. Trust me. Just don’t.
Here’s looking forward to a fun four years folks. Change? Maybe. Still, Pete Townsend famously opined that the new boss isn’t often that much different from the old one. From this reporter’s perspective, that wouldn’t be such a bad thing at all.