Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Ayn Rand, Lynda Carter, and Phil Davison

After the ugly business of voting in today’s primary, at least tonight I get to escape to the more philosophical setting of an Ayn Rand Institute convention.  I am not an Objectivist (Rand didn’t approve of utilitarians, altruists, or non-Objectivist libertarians), but I will give Rand credit for, among many other things, the insight that for rationality to become popular with an irrationally-inclined human race, it must be made romantically appealing.

In their different ways, her contemporaries Gene Roddenberry and Rod Serling had the same attitude.  She reportedly wanted Serling to write a movie script for Atlas Shrugged, the book being celebrated tonight, but he, reasonably enough, saw her as a sort of cult leader.  For all her arrogance, she was unpretentious in many ways, admitting to a fondness for Mickey Spillane and Charlie’s Angels.

Speaking of 70s television, I notice that Lynda Carter, famous for playing Wonder Woman, went on to become something of a Troy McClure.  Indeed, you may remember her from such (real) TV-movies as A Matter of Wife…and Death, When Friendship Kills, and She Woke Up Pregnant.

Combining video entertainment and political campaigns, we have the much-watched ranting speech by would-be county treasurer Phil Davison in Ohio, which, like the Joacquin Phoenix documentary, is a reminder that I may be turning into a fuddy-duddy who can no longer laugh at the mentally ill — if that’s his situation.  I’m also not sure I should laugh when, for instance, the usually-dry campaign for state auditor of Massachusetts turns into a big-budget fight complete with campaign jingles.  As Dave Whitney says, even the presidential candidates didn’t do that last time.  Maybe something larger is at stake this time that isn’t immediately clear.


Ali T. Kokmen said...

From the something-like-two-weeks-a-few-years-back when I was paying attention to cabaret singers, I seem to recall that Lynda Carter’s current career is as much focused on her singing as her acting (in awesomely titled TV movies or whatever else.)

Meredith said...

I think I’d rather elect that nutter than the smug commentators.

Christopher said...

The Phoenix thing was all a fake, according to Casey Affleck: