Political entertainers have learned that hazy, hot and humid debates about the presidential candidates’ recommended policy prescriptions for improving global economic conditions can make a hazy, hot and humid summer seem even more so. Serious subjects that involve math and science take the summer off and we instead spend our leisure time on summer replacement issues, like dogs on car roofs and critique of a candidate’s vocal range. Bask in the cool comfort of fluff issues.
We media consumers need light fare to keep comfortable in July. Now is the season to ask breezy questions such as “Boxers or briefs?” or “Ginger or Marianne?” Inquiring minds want to know. It takes our minds off our personal misery indices like a tall glass of sweet iced tea on a hot summer day quenches our seasonal malaise. Position papers make us too sweaty, then we start to smell.
Presidents have been asked for years about their favorite summer movies as a diversion from the hot topics of the day. Reagan was asked the question. Not surprisingly, he liked Star Wars, for obvious geopolitical reasons. Clinton praised the summer classic Porky’s for its uplifting dialogue and graphic cinematography. George Bush said his favorite movie was Titanic because the ending was such a surprise to him. Who could have predicted that big boat would sink?
In keeping with this summer tradition, President Obama was asked to take the first dip into the shallows, and he announced that his favorite summer blockbuster movie of all time was Steven Spielberg’s 1975 thriller, Jaws. “Great performances and a little scare makes for a fun movie,” he said. Ah, very safe and highly forgettable. That’s refreshing.
Cue the Jaws theme. The Great Campaign Beasts swim into the frame. Maybe Obama’s movie preference isn’t as benign as we thought.
The Far Right blogosphere erupts. “Of course Obama would love a movie that promoted fear. Fear is his greatest governing tool. If he is reelected, we are all going to need a bigger boat – to escape his failed policies.”
It’s getting warm out there. The Romney campaign joins in with its own interpretation of the President’s hidden message in his movie choice.
“Jaws is a fine motion picture but you cannot ignore its’ socialist themes. Obama loves Jaws because of the subtle anti-capitalist message of the story,” reads the campaign’s release. “The only way to save the economy of Amity Island in Obama-land was to put a government employee and an overeducated Northeastern environmental elitist in charge of an independent contractor on that boat. What Obama and his fans overlook is that Mr. Quint would have killed that economic threat without their interference for the paltry sum of $10,000. Brody and Hooper didn’t trust the market, and neither does Obama.”
The heat continues to build.
“Typical Romney,” began the rebuttal statement from the Obama camp. “In a shameless pander to coastal voters, he claims Jaws is a “fine motion picture”, but then goes on to deride its message. Which is it, Mitt? Did you like Jaws or not? Leaders take a stand. Etch-A-Sketchers shake.”
The Far Left blogosphere smells blood in the water, and brings some heat of its own.
“It’s no wonder that Romney can’t bring himself to completely reject Jaws as an American classic. The tragedy of the story comes straight from Romney’s playbook. Wealthy business owners in the town clearly placed their economic well-being ahead of the safety of the Amity residents. Those members of the island’s 1% had their own puppet in office, Mayor Vaughn, who was more than happy to risk lives to please his financial supporters.”
“You don’t understand,” he condescended to the brave Chief Brody. “We’re a summer town. We need summer dollars.” The puppet mayor accused the hero Brody of inexperience and questioned his judgment. The moneyed interests in town even convinced the coroner to reject the science of crime scene investigation and amend a legal death certificate. This was wrong in 1975 Amity, and it was wrong in 2008 U.S. of A.”
The Romney camp strikes back with fire.
“It is no coincidence that Obama’s favorite summer movie begins with a drug party on the beach and ends with the preventable death of a decorated World War II veteran. The story line is a perfect metaphor for his approach to domestic policy, and before long, we’ll all be left out to sea without a paddle.”
“The shark,” retorts the MSNBC hosts, “represents Romney’s vision of the American ruling business class. In reality, Romney’s dream economic model is the middle class’ nightmare. To update Captain Quint’s view, “You know the thing about capitalism, it’s got lifeless eyes, black eyes, like a doll’s eye. When it comes at ya, doesn’t seem to be livin’. Until it bites ya and those black eyes roll over white. And then, ah then you hear that terrible high pitch screamin’ of the middle class and the market turns red and spite of all the poundin’ and the hollerin’ the 1% all come in and rip you to pieces.”
Fox and Friends gives a slightly different interpretation of the shark metaphor in Jaws. In their view, Obama is the shark that “When he comes at ya, doesn’t seem to be livin’. Until he bites ya with his tax increases and those black eyes roll over white. And then, ah then you hear that terrible high pitch screamin’ of the middle class and the economy turns red and spite of all the poundin’ and the hollerin’ the government comes in and rips you to pieces.”
Yes, America. Obama fancies himself a government savior like Chief Brody, when in reality he is the dangerous beast destroying the economy of Main Street with his insatiable appetite for your money. Those who actually pay taxes are out there splashing in the surf and lining up to be a hot lunch for Obama’s irresponsible spending plans.
The Left fights back.
“There is no denying that stronger government regulations, such as advocated by Chief Brody, would have saved the life of poor little Alex Kintner. Closing those beaches would have cost some profitability, but what price do you put on Mrs. Kintner’s grief? In Romney’s America, you will be eaten alive.”
If it is true that hot air contributes significantly to global climate change, this might end up being the hottest summer on record.