Politics is a lot like watching big, puffy clouds from a hilly park. Rorschach-style, of course. Sometimes a cloud looks like a harmless bunny with fluffy ears. Sometimes that cloud looks like a sharp-toothed piranha hell-bent on the emasculation of the entire human race.
Consider, once more, the Walt Disney Company’s highly publicized castigation of Mirimax for considering writing a press release about the distribution of Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11, a documentary linking the Bush administration’s chummy relationship with the Saudi royal family to the Sept. 11 attacks. The company gets loads of tax breaks from Florida governor and Bush brother Jeb. Moore, not to mention other reasonably paranoid people, suggests that Disney doesn’t want to risk its hard-won extra cash. It’s about money, of course. In a New York Times report, Disney offered the excuse that it didn’t want to anger its target market with a politically contentious film. Again, it’s about money.
The crazy, conspiratorial mind sees something else afoot. Indeed, this time last year national polls revealed that some two out of three Americans wrongly believed Iraqi despot Saddam Hussein was behind the Sept. 11 attacks. Thus it was that our national propensity not to read the newspapers helped propel Bush’s war all the way to Baghdad, where we taught the Iraqi people valuable lessons in democracy by shutting down a Shia newspaper and forcing Iraqi prisoners to perform fellatio on one another. Of course our president would like to see the implication that Saddam attacked us fully maintained. After all, the Saudi Kingdom’s vast funding of extremist Wahhabi massadras preaching death to the West had no connection to international terrorism. Right?
& ull; More movie madness: According to The New York Times, NASA scientists were ordered not to answer media questions about Roland Emmerich’s new film, The Day After Tomorrow, a sensationalist take on global warming taking indirect aim at Bush administration environmental policies. Or if it’s so “sensational,” why does NASA have government’s orders not to discuss it?
& ull; Oily connections: Last month, Washington Post journalist and Plan of Attack author Bob Woodward told of how Prince Bandar bin Sultan, Saudi ambassador to the United States, hinted to President Bush that the price of oil per barrel would be lower by Election Day. Come May 10, Reuters reports that Saudi Arabia recommended to OPEC that oil production be raised by 6 percent.
& ull; The evil, evil United Nations: By no account is the U.N. a perfect institution. Show us one that is. The thinking, yet largely reactionary, Ayn Rand Institute takes the international body to task over admitting gross human-rights violator Sudan to the U.N. Human Rights Commission. Conservative firebrands, meanwhile, can’t be bothered about human rights on the African continent. They worry the United Nations will take away their guns, kill babies, and banish Mother’s Day. In reality, the United Nations spends more time trying to fortify soy sauce with iron, zinc and vitamin A so Third World children might develop higher IQs. And the entire world knows the Bush administration can’t wait for U.N. Special Adviser Lakhdar Brahimi and U.N. Ambassador John D. Negroponte to help out with the heavy lifting involved in Iraq’s first free elections in January 2005. And the entire world knows that, without U.N. assistance, occupying forces would resort to cloning whole armies from the DNA of Lynndie England and Ann Coulter.