Political Noir

The Republican convention is upon us. So, it’s Trump and Mike Pence. But of course! Trump is a former reality TV creature and Pence came out of talk radio. I’m not going to expound on the obviously ego maniacal, misogynistic, racist, xenophobic, bullshit artist that is Mr. T. He attracted enough white males who apparently align themselves with the above noted disturbing (and well documented) characteristics of Agent Orange to stunningly get the GOP nomination (to the horror of much of the GOP, let alone plenty of average, rational thinking members of we the people).

Pence? He’s a Tea Bagger. Remember that media-stroking political crowd standing around in solidarity, circa 2009, with their signs and blowing plenty of hot air about “I want my country back!”?  Of course, they wanted their country back from that black dude who had been elected (gasp!) in 2008, but neither they nor the corporate media would spin their protestations in such a truthful and obvious manner as to their motivations and ugly, racist indignation. Then, conveniently, when President Obama, “Capitulator-in-Chief” alienated his base by doing very, very little-to-nothing with his early political power via having the senate and house of reps controlled by Democrats, droves of disillusioned and/or lazy, dopey distracted potential voters sat on their hands during the 2010 mid-term election. Meanwhile, given the same shameless, corporate spotlight by the media, the Tea Bag crowd did vote and, POOF!, the GOP took over congress. More like infested it. Not all republicans are tea baggers, but there’s plenty of them, with Pence now part of the 2016 GOP ticket. Remember Cruz and Rubio? Tea baggers.

Pence is a religious Right whack job who, as governor of Indiana championed laws aimed at discriminating against the LGBT community, the pro-choice, Planned Parenthood networks, and just being an anti-democratic ideologue who has zero respect for minorities, women, social and economic fairness, ad nauseam. A true Republican, right down to that party’s rotten, anti-democratic core.

I’m wondering who the keynote speaker might be for the Republican convention. Is the great-grandson of Joseph Goebbels available? Maybe Heinrich Himmler III? We’ll just have to wait and see. Is Bozo available? It’ll be must see TV! But put the tikes to beddie-bye early. They don’t need to watch a fucking freak show.

*        *      *

Then there’s the Democratic convention in a couple of weeks. And who do we have to take on the neo-fascist GOP ticket? Hillary! Ms.Clinton’s poll numbers regarding being trustworthy and honest are: 70% negative! Well done, Debbie Wasserman Shultz and the National Democratic Committee. With another sardonic tip of the hat to the national, corporate media.

Ms.Clinton is such a massively flawed candidate that a 74-year-old SOCIALIST initially unknown to most Americans, managed to raise tens of millions of dollars from individual donors, campaigning on the enough is enough clarion call regarding the economic disparity between the uber rich and the working class, an oligarchic modus operandi that has been nefariously working its dark mojo since the day Ronald Reagan was sworn into office in 1981.Yes, Bernie Sanders spoke truth to power, and in spite of the DNC’s treating him like a suspicious, unkempt drifter who brazenly crashed their by invitation only private party, and the mainstream media’s virtual early blackout on covering his candidacy, let alone his being a sitting U.S. Senator, he won over 20 primaries and gave Hillary savage political headaches along the campaign trail;  rather than a smooth, fait accompli ascension to her party’s nomination, queen Hillary had to sweat it out for a good while, even adopting some of Sander’s ideas in order to massage her lackluster image as peddling increasingly dubious denials of being a corporatist candidate given to saying things that weren’t resonating with much of the general public (see above, poll numbers).

Of course Bernie couldn’t win. It’s a rigged system. He said so himself. But the polls show that, while Hillary–who should be demolishing her GOP rivals–is shockingly in a dead heat with Mr.T approaching the conventions and the November day of reckoning, Mr.Sanders numbers clearly indicate he would be able to win the 2016 election. Not that the media let that be widely known. Bernie is (egad!) an “outsider”.  He’s the Second Coming of Ralph Nader, for the love of our blessed (so-called) “two-party” system. Gather the children. Avert their innocent eyes!

If only someone else, maybe there’s someone else who’s not a Clinton and not Bernie Sanders, but who could sincerely channel Bernie’s mind-set,  while being a bona-fide Democrat and thereby preempting the smear tactic rhetoric of “socialist=communist” relentlessly flung at Sanders. If only…out there…somewhere, somewhere. There must be SOMEONE besides that CLINTON who is worthy of consideration. No? No! Not a chance. So, we get the Wall Street-connected candidate who attracts controversy simply by merely existing in the political context. Remember The Clinton Years when Bill was President? Constant investigations. Partisan, of course, but it was because they were THOSE Clintons. This “gate”, that “gate” and then, mind-bogglingly, Bill gives the republicans Monika Lewinski! Yeah, it’ll be those same two Clintons.

Now, can you say Bengazi? Can you say “private email server”?  Untrustworthy. Dishonest. Flip-flopper… (see above, poll numbers). More partisan investigations, creating doubt about her character, the Masons, the Tri-Lateral Commission, and her clear agenda to remain Hillary Rodham Clinton, in spite of it being so offensive to conservative politics and manifestly mentally unstable Americans who possess all those AR-15s.. It’ll be the Bill and Hillary political soap opera, ghost of the 90s revisited. The sequel!  Same old same old. A new face? Support a fresh voice (Bernie, circa 1970?) Really? Who needs that!? But there’s no one else the DNC could champion, remember? No. One. Doesn’t exist.

As Bernie Sanders, circa 2016,  continually pointed out, Ms.Clinton received over $200,000 numerous times to speak to the Wall Street crowd. Oh, and she voted for the phony Iraq war. And was for the Trans Pacific Partnership before being against it. A real breath of we the people fresh air! Her daughter, Chelsea, married a Wall Street gazillionaire. So, I’m sure Hillary is going to lay the whip to Wall Street. Sure, Day One of her administration!

But never you mind…

Hillary it is. And while the neo-fascists noted above are a horrific, deeply disturbing development, the prevailing, desperate appeal to those NOT HILLARY! voices (such as yours truly) to hold their nose and vote for candidate Clinton is exactly that: desperation. Whether some people who can’t stomach the idea of Hillary’s getting elected (not anti-woman, mind you; just anti-Clinton) she’s now the only hope of defeating Trump/Pence. The evil of two lessors. This mantra of it’s either Clinton or THEM is now so disturbingly, inexorably true that even Bernie Sanders has (methinks quite reluctantly) endorsed her, as has the democratic, female incarnation of Bernie, Elizabeth Warren. How corrupted a system we have. Even the reform minded are compelled to accommodate. Hope and change can wait a few more elections cycles. Or forever…

Trump/Spence or another status quo/quid pro quo Democrat. Perfect.

Well, in cinema, film noir, a post World War Two genre, explored corruption through the underbelly of the human soul, including the individual and right up to public and private institutions. All corruption is equal. The narratives in these films rode along on creaky and crooked tracks leading to a very dark, duplicitous, dangerous and ultimately doomed unhappy end-of-the-line. Noir is not meant to be uplifting or reassuring. It’s not cinematic escapism. It’s meant to make the viewer recoil from its cynicism and have a funk follow them home, lingering in the psyche like the tail end of a very disturbing dream.

Political noir. A double feature, starting very soon. Avert the children’s eyes.










About jharrin4

mass communication/speech instructor at College of DuPage and Triton College in suburban Chicago. Army veteran of the Viet Nam era.
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1 Response to Political Noir

  1. catt23 says:

    Who knows, perhaps a century or two from now historians will be able to identify lessons learned from this political noir narrative and thereby prevent humankind from repeating these mistakes…oops, my bad…..climate change… I surmise the screen may very well show The End well beforehand.


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