Even if you’ve got time to kill, don’t waste it watching the Democratic National Convention. That is, unless you want to see five nights of self-congratulatory flagellation. Yes, the Democrats did manage to nominate an electable candidate, as they have since 2000. But as we all know, they’ve done it before with nothing to show for it.
On tap is five nights of unearned back-slapping and speechifying. Correct me if I’m wrong, but the platform most Democrats ran on in the last mid-term election was to stand up to W. Bush and end the war in Iraq. Yet, they kept voting for funding, and our troops are still there getting bombed and shot. And in case you haven’t noticed at your local gas station, the Enron loophole is alive and well. This is the party that is supposedly looking out for working and middle class Americans. In the words of Charlie Brown, “Good Grief.”
It is almost beside the point, but any entertainment the Convention can supply can be trumped elsewhere on cable, with less boredom and more enjoyment.
- If you’re looking for melodramatic bad acting, go find some reruns of Melrose Place on the Soap Network. Skip Hillary and Barack arm-in-arm, smiling and acting like they’re great friends, mutually thrilled to have finally unified their party. Without Aaron Spelling to direct them, that bit could be one of the most painful events in recent television history.
- Democratic party officials and politicians will be full of vitriol, fire, and outrage this week. Of course, it’s easy to stand up and bellow when you’re surrounded by ardent, nerdy supporters. Remember, these are the same folks who let Rove, Cheney, and Bush push them around for the last eight years while barely making a peep. Watch the Wizard of Oz and see if the mighty Wizard doesn’t remind you of the Democrats–especially after Dorothy pulls back the curtain.
- When you were in high school, didn’t you find the student government people to be just a bit pompous and full of themselves? As if they were actually doing something other than putting on dances and making sure students paid their class dues? Granted, some kids were normal teens trying to pad their college apps, but the ones who took it seriously–you might recognize them at the convention foaming at the mouth and thrusting Obama-Biden signs high into the air. Do you really want to spend five nights with these folks? Get a grip with some kids who have real issues–check out Season One of Friday Night Lights. Not a Student Council geek to be found.
- Democrats will spar over the party’s platform, as if it matters. As soon as everyone is elected, the politicians will go back to their primary job function–getting reelected. Outside of a few issues such as health care and hopefully ending the war, no one will give a rat’s ass about “minor” aspects of what is supposedly the party’s agenda. If you want to see staged, fixed, and meaningless fighting, The Hangover recommends the WWE‘s Monday Night Raw or Friday’s Smackdown. In addition, the wrestling Divas are much hotter than the political wonkettes. The Hangover will take Eve and Victoria over Nancy Pelosi and Rielle Hunter any day.
- If you actually want to gain respect for your Senators and Representatives, skip the Convention and watch C-Span. Anyone that can stay awake while serving through a session of Congress deserves some degree of adulation.
- Finally, if you want to see what’s at the heart of American politics, get your hands on Robert Altman’s Nashville. The film is set at a political convention, and it will entertain, educate, and challenge more than this week’s pitiful Demo-fest.