East­wood shoots him­self in the foot

Herald Sun - Switched On - - On The Couch -

SHOULDN’T there be more Clint East­wood movies on tele­vi­sion this week? Un­for­given? Gran Torino? Dirty Harry? The one with the chim­panzee? Rushed into one of the sched­ules some­where to re­mind us how dan­ger­ous guns are if they fall into the hands of the dan­ger­ously un­hinged?

Just kid­ding. No­body can rush any­thing into a sched­ule any­more. Ev­ery­thing’s planned a year out. That’s why the net­works get into such a tizzy when one of their shows falls over. It’s all tighter than Warnie’s face.

Oh, there’s a bit of room to move on their mul­ti­chan­nels, but in­creas­ingly they need them free so they have some­where to dump shows when they axe them.

This is why I love the US pres­i­den­tial elec­tions so much. The Con­ven­tions, I al­most have no idea why, are close to riv­et­ing. And they rate, is the other thing. Peo­ple ac­tu­ally watch them, in droves. More than football!

They’re live, which means any­thing can hap­pen, even though they’re as reg­i­mented and or­ches­trated as an Academy Awards cam­paign. But who expected Bill Clin­ton to be so ‘‘ fiery and long’’ as CNN put it, kind of weirdly. Or Clint East­wood to be so ter­ri­ble?

I love their elec­tions much more than ours. I look at ours and won­der if any­body in ei­ther of the ma­jor par­ties has ever watched tele­vi­sion. I blame com­pul­sory vot­ing. No­body here has to do any­thing to get us to the bal­lot box so they don’t. It’s so bor­ing.

And worse, there’s noth­ing good to look at. This is why news­read­ers were in­vented. And Ron­ald Rea­gan. That old Jay Leno line about how pol­i­tics is act­ing for ugly peo­ple doesn’t ap­ply any­more.

Or not at this level I’m talk­ing about. You’re not go­ing to get elected pres­i­dent if you’re ugly. Ugly on the inside, maybe, but not if you’re in need of a makeover.

I watched a lot of cov­er­age of the Con­ven­tions on CNN, Bloomberg, BBC, PBS Newshour on SBS One, even Fox News and none of them had a worm. They used ac­tual ver­te­brate peo­ple to gauge in­ten­tions and at­ti­tudes and re­ac­tions. Not a worm. In­ter­est­ing. Seemed to work though. Maybe they’re sav­ing this type of in­no­va­tion for the de­bates next month, or maybe, like the rest of us, they find it un­fath­omable id­iocy. Like lin­ing up Clint East­wood. East­wood has, how­ever, ex­posed Repub­li­can strate­gists as dun­der­heads of the thick­est or­der. That right there should make peo­ple not want to vote for the party. Plus he made peo­ple in their 80s look bad — the Queen, the Rolling Stones — which was re­ally dumb, since a lot of them are also Repub­li­can vot­ers. ( Not the Queen, ob­vi­ously, she’s to­tally monar­chist.)

The same thing hap­pens here af­ter the Lo­gies: ‘‘ Whose ge­nius idea was it to book Gre­tel Killeen/Clint East­wood?’’ and ev­ery­one talks about it but Gre­tel’s/Clint’s phone doesn’t ring for the next five years.

Make their day: Clint East­wood has ex­posed Repub­li­can strate­gists as dun­der­heads.

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