Saturday, January 23, 2016
Bernie Sanders ad
So much of what passes for conversation rests on what pisses people off that it's sometimes hard to slow down enough to realize how wearing it is to be pissed off. It is more pleasant to be pleased, to love something. And all of this may account for the vociferousness of those who are deeply in love with sports teams: Somehow, however sappy it may be, it's acceptable to love and rise up for a baseball or football team. Even manly loud-mouths who hate the socialists they could not define on a bet are willing to allow for the passionate pleasure that has no meaning and yet can mean so much.
Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders loosed the above political ad a day or two ago. It is aimed at early-primary states like Iowa and New Hampshire. And after the implicit and explicit pissed-offed-ness of other political ads, there is something ballsy about it ... a willingness to invite people to love something despite the fact that politics, by definition, is bound to come around and bite you on the ass... the ad suggests you can love America, perhaps, without finding someone to disparage.
Sanders has made his agenda pretty clear in the past. The willingness to post an ad that doesn't twist or mangle some social difficulty and present a solution to it is somehow a relief ... and a smart move ... however smarmy or treacly it may be. By comparison, the ad hardly mentions the candidate, let alone his opponents. It mentions the people who are going to vote ... the ones who may be baseball fans and fans of their country and the potential to live life in some moderately happy way. Whatever mention of Sanders is made is trumped by the ordinary actions of ordinary people ... people who are not happy to be pissed off at every turn.
It's a risky ad, I think. But worth the risk: It outflanks the political process without complaining about it. There are no sly jibes or righteous poses ... now that's ballsy.
Not to mention the fact that this old, smarmy fart likes the Simon and Garfunkel music.