Let Them Eat Cake Off My Ass

Connecting the Dots
by Glynn Wilson

TUSCALOOSA, Ala., May 27 – If it is too hot to paint here on the verge of what promises to be a classic global warming summer of heat waves, droughts and forest fires, imagine how it must feel in the deserts of Iraq trying to fight an unpopular, unwinnable war.

And think of how hot it must feel in Washington, D.C. for those trying to find a way out of the war and get Americans to pay attention to the news on global warming and stop driving gas guzzling SUVs everywhere they go.

A recent study showed that only when gas prices reach $4.48 a gallon will a change take place in the U.S. car culture.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of Americans do not pay much attention to politicians or the media. And you almost can’t blame them, considering the double-sided bullshit that passes for knowledgeable information pumped out by PR men everyday.

Rather than paying attention to serious news, many Americans do seem to pay attention to TV shows like “Family Guy” on Fox, a show that makes fun of their nuclear family lives.

“Family Guy” is an Emmy award winning animated television series about a family in the suburbs of Quahog, Rhode Island, created by Seth MacFarlane in 1999.

It holds the distinction of being the first cancelled show to be resurrected based on DVD sales in 2005 after it was canceled in 2002.

Most episode titles of the show are parodies of movies, popular slogans and television shows, and for the first half of the first season, the writers tried to work the words “murder” or “death” into the title of every episode to make the titles resemble those of old-fashioned radio mystery shows. They quit when it became too hard to keep up with the limited range of titles.

TV critics panned the show, and for good reasons, Not the usual family-values based reasons of too much gratuitous violence, sex or profanity.

Entertainment Weekly seems to have an ongoing war with the show, leading to an episode in which the main character and dysfunctional dad Peter wiped his ass with a copy of the magazine when he ran out of toilet paper.

In another recent episode, a big, fat woman flirts with Peter at a party and says, I kid you not, “Do you like my ass? Would you eat cake off my ass?”

We know President George W. Bush doesn’t watch TV news, but if he had time to watch TV at all, I bet he would laugh at that joke and maybe think to himself or tell Condi, “Hey, that’s a great line. Think I’ll use it. Let them eat cake off my ass. Ha. Ha.”

The show has also been panned using premises and humor very similar to “The Simpsons,” where the writers have taken their own jabs at “Family Guy” on the same network. The show was mocked in a two-part episode of South Park. The cast called “Family Guy’s” jokes interchangeable and said their frequent “cutaway gags” had no place in the storyline.

The show is at its best when it makes fun of politicians, the media and even the Fox network.

In a recent show, a character resembling George Bush falls off the wagon, gets drunk and runs around naked on a putt putt golf course. In the season finale, the character Death tells Peter he has had a busy day: “Dick Cheney, the president of Haliburton, shot Justice Scalia in a hunting accident and the bullet went through him and killed Scooter Libby and Tucker Carlson.”

In the 400th episode of “The Simpsons,” little Lisa tried to get people to understand the contradiction between the conservative Fox News and the often irreverent Fox TV.

“They just don’t match,” she said.

Which is much like a lot of real family life in the U.S. It is sometimes hard to understand the disconnect between people’s “beliefs” and “actions.”

But maybe that’s why it seems too easy for the mass public to be manipulated by lying politicians, who toy with the line between belief and action all the time, and crass commercial capitalists, who make billions fooling some of the people enough of the time.

Beliefs don’t mean shit. It’s what we know that matters.

It’s just that you can’t get away with saying it on the stump or in the news. Sometimes you can only find the truth in satirical animated TV shows – or maybe on blogs these days.

But there are some things you can’t even get away with on a blog. Does anyone doubt that the Bush-Gonzales Justice Department would spring into action if one were to suggest that Cheney AND Scalia should be shot?

Just kidding Alice. When I say shot, I mean with a camera, not a gun.