And the Winner Is…
As America eagerly awaits Britney Scissorhands’ opening act on the Video Music Awards tonight, as much of America longs to see who’s wearing what on the red carpet, as those of us striving to be 1% more conscious marvel at how George W. Bush will sparknote the General David Petraeus report, Osama Bin Laden clearly wins best performance in a video this year. How timely a release, right before the VMA’s themselves—is MTV losing its touch?; right before the 9/11 anniversary; right before the latest chapter of the neocon’s long day’s journey into Iraq.
Long ago Marshal McLuhan said it best: The Medium is the Massage. Fictions become facts, facts become doublespoke and ignored, and what matters most is perception management—the new “opium of the masses.” Our media continues to let the spin rip with more than two “turn tables and a microphone,” to tiptoe around surge supporters, and to indulge in the American Dream of everything is a-O.K.—don’t worry, be happy ☺. Just ask Britney or Osama for goodness sake—simply get extensions or die your beard to get your groove back.
And that’s exactly what we will witness in politics this week, as Frank Rich noted in yet another brilliant column today, “As the Iraqis Stand Down, We’ll Stand Up.” According to Rich, brace yourself for the 2002 play-book, the build-up-to-the-war plan, when you hear the words: “Anbar,” “bottom up,” “decrease in violence,” and “success.” Lo and behold, Senator John McCain stuck to the script in his interview with George Stephanopoulos this morning on This Week. Now I think McCain's performance in “Bomb, bomb Iran” should get an honorable mention.
But fear not, folks: I STILL WANT my MTV! And so should you.