In the 2006 comedy film “Idiocracy,” two people who take part in a hibernation experiment wake up 500 years later to discover that Americans have been institutionally and quite profoundly dumbed-down. Very little functions any longer in terms of infrastructure, and society has become a squalid, inefficient joke.
The president of the United States (for whom the protagonist ultimately winds up working) is a characteristically flamboyant former professional wrestler. No smarter or dumber than anyone else, he was presumably elected on charisma only, by a citizenry so stupid they don’t know that spraying Gatorade on crops instead of water isn’t a particularly good idea.
I wouldn’t be the only individual to draw a parallel between this cult film and America under our current president, by the way, but the former pro wrestler chief executive in the movie got me to thinking about pro wrestling, and one thing led to another …
A funny thing about pro wrestling is, of course, the fact that the matches are choreographed; some prefer the term “fake.” An even funnier thing about pro wrestling is the fact that people are strongly discouraged from articulating that the matches are choreographed (or fake) even though it is common knowledge. There are those who are quite ready to come to blows over the authenticity of the sport’s competition, or at least to vehemently deny that the matches are choreographed (or fake). Years ago, a friend of mine was actually choked into unconsciousness by a pro wrestler for being so rash as to suggest that the matches were faked. I kid you not. It wasn’t a publicity issue, either; only the two men were present at the time.
Now, I realize – as many pro wrestling fans are quick to point out – that choreographed matches in no way detract from the athleticism of the participants, particularly these days, wherein the matches are far more physically dynamic than they were 40 years ago, when the sport was dominated by older, fat guys in Greco-Roman wrestling garb.
The parallel I recognized between “Idiocracy,” the pro wrestling culture and the Age of Obama was this curious phenomenon of our not being allowed to articulate the facts of this choreography (or fakery) that is so integral to the Obama administration and to his role in particular.
Like a pro wrestling match, Americans have been encouraged to interpret events and actions that speak for themselves as something wholly other – specifically, in ways that benefit the administration’s narrative and future intentions. The wrestler isn’t really angry; he’s acting. He wasn’t thrown across the ring; the choreography just made it appear that way. And he isn’t really injured.
Unfortunately, the narrative and future intentions I mentioned, unlike those of the pro wrestler, are quite diabolical.
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