I love everything about TV.
The great educator.
We have the power to put absolutely anyone on TV and have them argue inane political points. What does the actor who plays Doctor Oz have to say about the mortgage crisis? What does the actress who plays Nancy Grace, an over caffeinated member of the PTA, have to say about a trial in Florida? We line up the wackos, shove them in front of a camera, and let the public decide if they like what’s said. We, the audience, pick our allegiances as if we were picking sports teams to root for.
What nutjob really identifies me as a person?
Over 8 million people choose the cranky, argumentative old man at the back of the church — playing the role of Bill O’Reilly — to capture the hearts of viewers everywhere.
Several million others choose the crazy bird man behind Circle K — in the role of Glenn Beck — to inform them of the ever-changing state of reality.
The problem is, these award-winning performers are being cast against type. They’re arguing about serious, life-or-death issues. They’re chimpanzees debating the moralistic cost of the post-industrial revolution. They’re arguing about the Debt Ceiling. They’re trying to convert you Steelers fans to Ravens fans. No one’s going to switch sides, here. When’s the last time you argued someone out of being a democrat/republican/conspiracy-theorist?
“Just cut public welfare spending and no one gets hurt!”
They try so hard. God bless them. I love to hear these maniacs fight to stay in character, back and forth. I especially enjoy watching their shows with judicious use of the mute button. Here is what I’ve learned by watching the Bill O’Reilly sitcom “The Factor” and Glenn Beck’s dark episodic drama, “Glenn Beck”:
a) Superhuman intellectuals (“liberals”) are out to murder, sodomize, and rob the hard-working american public – this is probably the result of illegal drug use and stand-up comedian Al Gore.
b) Bill and Glenn look like a goblin and an orc, respectively.
c) The price of chocolate is being manipulated by a nefarious secret society, headed up by a shape-shifting creature known as George Soros who drinks the blood of hedge fund managers.
d) Illegal aliens in America (aka the guys who work at Burger King) are plotting to take over the American economic and judicial system.
e) The man in charge of America was born on the continent of Africa, and this is a very bad thing.
f) Devout religious zealots are plotting to murder random civilians in a quest to acquire 40 virgins – they walk among you.
Not all of which are untrue!
But seriously, Billy, what’s your day-to-day life like? Do you wake up happy to be alive? Do you look over your shoulder on the way to Starbucks? Do you “keep an eye” on Miguel at Jack in the Box? (I would, because if he has any sense at all, Miguel is going to spit a gigantic loogie in your Sourdough Jack) Do you scan the television looking for demonic socialists propagating their left wing Stalin-esque agenda?
So I invite you and Glenn to come visit me in Venice Beach. I swear, none of that shit you’re terrified of is happening here. The only thing you have to watch out for is the crazy man near Radio Shack who smells awful as he mutters about the price of corn into a mailbox slot.
I MUST SAY, GENTLEMEN, I GENERALLY DISAPPROVE OF YOUR VULGAR LANGUAGE!
What really grinds my gears is the wanton cursing that goes on in these shows. They’re using the C-word again. The last time we got C-word crazy, millions of Vietnamese, Cambodians, Central Americans, Cubans, and North Americans died. Hundreds of screenwriters and directors and actors were censored. Not all of whom were C-words, most were just assholes (ex: Bay of Pigs).
GOD HELP US ALL if these circus performers ever start using the t-word. Because if the birdman and the goblin start accusing others of TERROR (definition: causing scary thoughts) then we’re really ass-backward and up against the wall. Who knows how many will die in the process. We’ll be OK if we don’t let the lunatics decide our next move.
OSAMA IS DEAD! It only took ________ innocent lives! That’s _____ less than the number of innocent people Osama killed or would kill.
I genuinely do not know the numbers. I am bad at math. I won’t even attempt to calculate an equation. It’s way more complicated than I understand. I’ll leave it to the more educated. I’ll argue about what I know best, words and lunatics.
The problem was never that we didn’t know things were fucked up.
The problem is that we don’t know how to unfuck things.
That’s okay to not know. There are smarter people out there. So Bill, Glenn, Jon, Stephen, Nancy, Anderson — all you bastards — be fucking nice when you talk about other people. Tone it down. Watch your mouth. We don’t know what to do about it either, and that is all right. Take one deep breath. Enroll in a sailing class, you never know what you like until you try it.
I just don’t want anyone to get hurt.