Hot on the heels of the inability of some of Hollywood’s thin-skinned Wankerati to laugh at themselves (nice one, Ricky), the profundity of American Seriousness will manifest itself at the annual set-piece SOTU on The Hill this Tuesday. One of the most endearing aspects of the SOTU ritual is its peppering with spontaneous bouts of quick-response standing ovations after Mister President has delivered grateful Americans his best bon mots straight from the heart of his autocue. Applause of the Pop Ups— surely no POTUS could wish for more. Terribly exciting in a pantomimish sort of way, such displays of unrestrained adulation are what modern politicians do when pogo-ing is inappropriate. The gesture of unbridled joy was nailed to perfection by Joey “The Weasel” Lieberman during The Imbecile’s 2006 SOTU performance. Joey, one helluva guy, was a Democratic Senator at the time. Such twitter-op moments are nowadays pinged around the globe faster than David Helfgott can riff Rachmaninoff .
Despite the US being quagmired in South Asia, the economy still in the hands of the same folks who brayed the nation astray ( “no,no, no, America will never be involved in a GFC”), infrastructure disintegrating, schools strangled for funds many of the population dumbed-down to “rhetoric by slogan”……… during SOTU, Americans are going to be exhorted by their Commander-In-Chief to hang in there for the greatest little nation that ever had the courage to bestow god’s gift of Democracy upon a world of ingrates who happen to be born in locations rich in resources or are of hegemonic significance.
Talking heads will analyse every POTUS utterance with the same breathless anticipation the economic press once paid to each Greenspan sigh. Comparisons will be made with SOTUs past pitched by Mt. Rushmore shortlistees, Kennedy, Clinton, and Reagan. In the land of the diminished attention span, by the weekend very few voters will remember what all the hoopla was about. Unless there is a wardrobe malfunction or some lawmaker cuts a stentorian fart at an inappropriate moment.
When SOTU 2011 is over and done, when all the confetti swept up and when the last legislator has exited The Hill, two unwinnable wars will grind on, 30 million Americans will continue to be spied upon by their govt., the Silent Spring will continue to scream, Gitmo and Abu Grahib and the other non habeas corpus hell-holes will remain open for business, John Boehner will sport a more toned-down tan and a once-great nation will discover that mah-jong can be every bit as fascinating as poker.