A blog formerly known as Bookishness

By Charles Matthews

"Dazzled by so many and such marvelous inventions, the people of Macondo ... became indignant over the living images that the prosperous merchant Bruno Crespi projected in the theater with the lion-head ticket windows, for a character who had died and was buried in one film and for whose misfortune tears had been shed would reappear alive and transformed into an Arab in the next one. The audience, who had paid two cents apiece to share the difficulties of the actors, would not tolerate that outlandish fraud and they broke up the seats. The mayor, at the urging of Bruno Crespi, explained in a proclamation that the cinema was a machine of illusions that did not merit the emotional outbursts of the audience. With that discouraging explanation many ... decided not to return to the movies, considering that they already had too many troubles of their own to weep over the acted-out misfortunes of imaginary beings."
--Gabriel García Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

On Hating Obama

Matt Taibbi notes Martin Peretz's diagnosis of Obama's "clinical narcissism" and links it to the rest of the flood of anti-Obama propaganda.

It seems to me that the determination of the Obama haters to worry about irrelevancies and nonsense, and not his real policies, is evidence that they find something soothing in this villain-fantasy. Clearly, for one thing, the fantasy does not involve worrying about or even thinking about real problems. It allows people to transfer real anxiety and fear and anger over real problems into this fictional arena where the only thing to worry about is the presidency of this evil black Wizard of Oz-like figure who lies about his birthplace and has secret plans to institute a clearly-will-never-happen program of national servitude. If you’re in that place mentally, you might as well be playing Dungeons and Dragons. There’s no way thoughts like this can ever feel completely real, which maybe is the idea.

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