Democratic Underground

The Threatened Exodus of Hollywood
April 21, 2001
by Kurt Kurowski

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I wholeheartedly agree with the recent criticism that a number of Hollywood types had been overly emotional in threatening to leave the United States because - and may an obviously punishing God have mercy - yet another Bush has once again taken tangled root in the White House. But my reasons are in sharp variance with those whose cries of "Go on, get outta here already!" have of late been found in the Letters to the Editor and commentary sections of American newspapers.

I ask that those influential, if disgruntled, people of Hollywood remain to tell the stories of election 2000, and of history's most alphabetically and intellectually streamlined president, W. Through drama, parody, and even cartoons ("The Simpsons" creators - a nation's eyes, as usual, are on you) my hope is that the absurdity, hypocrisy and alarming cheerfulness of the Bush machine that brought about his election (or whatever the hell that was) will once again return to us in the form of biting satire. Preferably with the deepest bite taken squarely out of the rear-end of George W. Bush, the man whose propensity for presumptuousness and intellectual laziness often make Jethro Bodine of "The Beverly Hillbillies" look like George Washington in comparison.

As for drama, perhaps "The West Wing" can fully earn its alternate, jocular title of "The Left Wing" by lifting story lines from what will surely be gut-churning drama as the passionate Christian-right attempts to remove its own pound of flesh out of president Bush's hide in exchange for their good behavior during the election cycle. Not to mention for their accurately cast and counted ballots.

One episode of this riveting series might conceivably be devoted to the concept of equal protection while also revealing the many different ways different counties in one state can cast a ballot. But since these two plot lines in one show would create an unsatisfying and difficult to believe denouement, the last half hour of the episode might have to redeem itself by instructing Democrats in how to properly cast ballots, even how to outsmart the tricked out, gussied up, or outdated equipment they may find when going to vote.

A follow-up episode on suppressing the minority vote might incorporate the hoary plot device of a time machine where we begin with the main character (black) driving up to the polling booth in 2000 but once inside he mysteriously finds the era of Jim Crow is fully in place. This will be a plus for the set designers - they do so love the challange of a period piece.

Forget about the presidential debate videotape scandal. How about casting the tragically ironic Theresa La Pore as a double agent for the GOP? She designs a disastrous muddle of a ballot in the most reliably Democratic county in Florida, thus taking over 6,000 votes from Mr. Gore. The scriptwriters can't quite figure out if the laundered 1.3 million dollars in the Swiss bank account is too little or too much - should they vote on it?

And don't overlook the possibility of an edge-of-your-seat big screen mystery about a certain U.S. Supreme Court wherein we find conflicted individuals like you and me -- only seemingly more brilliant, definitely more powerful, and maybe richer-- who must each respectively decide between : 1) A desire to retire with the old man down southwestern way. 2) Retiring in order to nurse a bad back. 3) Helping the little woman with her vetting job 4) personal career advancement - and a sworn oath to uphold democracy as suggested in the Constitution.

What with all that "We the people" this, and "We the people" that, isn't it about time these overworked characters get to think about just themselves for a change? Wouldn't you root for them? Like Hollywood actors, Supreme Court Justices need a modicum of "me time" too, you know.

But most anticipated of all might be the reality-based survival show with the working title of "Texas Panhandle Scramble 2000." Among the contestants will be the self-named "Pioneers" from energy concerns that early in the campaign spent tens of millions to get failed ex-oil "bidness" man G. W. Bush and the moderately Texas-sized Mr. Cheney to both fit neatly into one back pocket. America will watch and breathlessly await who becomes the first Pioneer to break into America's protected wilderness areas and plumb its languishing resources. Second place will go to he who pays the lowest of the low, low prices in our upcoming national "Going, Going, Gone Sale" on energy, minerals and timber.

An honorary James Watt booby prize is granted to the company whose PR firm represents them as the most deeply, deeply concerned about the environment and America's wide assortment of children and puppies. Of course your capable hosts will be two one-time Watt proteges, the accommodating Gale Norton and the helpful Christie Todd Whitman, a.k.a. "Frisky McBookem" for the smiling photo taken of her on a New Jersey police ride-along where she can be seen patting down a suspect. Wheeee! She's sure to provide the fun.

As I speculate on the future events that may bring about this glut of grand entertainment, I am reminded of how Granny, late of Beverly Hills, often forcefully stated "I needs my Rhumatiz' med'cine!" But regrettably, sipping from a jug - as Dubya himself can testify - will not help matters. And to be blunt, neither will leaving the country.

So please, all of you outraged Hollywood big-shots, forget about it. Remain here in the States and help to keep the issues up front. Be like good citizen Babs, who speaks out and ignores the snotty comments from Republicans who always seem to forget that their favorite president used to co-star with a monkey. Then in both two and four years from now, nag us to vote. And remind us to closely follow directions when we do, because it would seem us Democrats just ain't as handy as that Mr. Drysdale down to the Commerce Bank.

And who knows? Even with its heavy reliance on puppetry (just how far up his butt does that hand go?) the Cheney and Bush show just might turn out to be a certifiable -- if somewhat illegitimate -- hit, instead of just the hit upside the head it now appears to be.

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