Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Hulk Hogan's Rights of Man
It is election day and very soon we will bid farewell to Bush Jr. his cabal of cretin-esque Neoconservatives, some of the best bad guys we've seen in a while. So as a going away present I thought I would present this video. A good friend of mine originally showed it to me for the obvious humor potential (what is up with that part where the rocket fucks the American flag!?), but after watching it a few times (and downloading the insatiable tune) I began to realize that it was best summation of Neoconservatism and the "accomplishments" of the Bush administration I have ever seen. Here is why:
1. National Greatness: let's start with the simplistic patriotism and gratutitous ammount of flag waving, all predating Fox News, nonetheless. In the very beginning it quickly and effectively sets up the American narrative: the war for independence, the Constitution, a couple of great Presidents, the diversity of our landmass, Martin Luther King Jr. and the Vietnam war. Nevermind certain contradictions like that Jefferson owned slaves or MLK Jr. opposed the Vietnam war, the point is that it was all uniquely American and America rules!
2. Creative Destruction: you can't have progress without blowing up a few buildings, crashing airplanes (hey, McCain...), bicycles or beating the snuff out of a few guys. Despite the fact that the phrase 'creative destruction' can be traced back to Bakunin and Nietzsche, here we are interested in arch-Neoconservative, Jacobin, democratic revolutionary Michael Ledeen's use of the phrase. To be fair, Ledeen probably got it from the futurist writtings of F.T. Marinetti while he was cutting his teeth with the Italian security services co-opting fascisti wild boys and making sure that the Great American Empire would righteously castrate an independent Europe (see previous post).
3. Natural Rights: the key to Hogan's Wilsonian ideology can be found in the lyrics, "I am a real American/Fight for the rights of every man." Despite that Hogan's glory is uniquely American, his duty and destiny extends far beyond our borders. Every true American, the song implies, must not simply take their freedoms and rights (which are given not inherent) for granted. No, he or she must ensure that every human being in world has these rights protected as well. Hence the precondition for imperial intervention in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and anywhere else this particular notion of the Rights of Man is threatened. Also, notice Hogan's tearing up a photo of tinpot dictator Gaddafi, predating the obsession with other insular wannabe Bonapartes like Saddam and Chavez.
4. The last point more has to do with the medium rather than the message, though as McLuhan taught us, the relationship between the two is often closer than we think. So here we see Hogan's patriotic demagoguery amid throngs of flag waving simpletons who just love being duped by the spectacular theatrics of it all, just like people during election season. Again, Hogan's antics predate a key part of Neoconservative methodology: Idiot Populism. Reagan's clean cut cinematic bluster started it all but he was still a bit too obviously corporate for the sans-culottes who make up the small town GOP rallies. Bush's ranch hand persona took it step further and he pretty much sealed the deal with the flight suit, if only for that pesky issue of his unofficial AWOL from the armed forces. The final stage of this phenomena was, of course, the rabid mobocracy of McCain/Palin rallies which got all manners of semi-literate yokels in a tizzy about Obama bringing some sort of socialist caliphate stateside. Of course, legitimate fears about Democratic Party big government intervention into the lives of small town citizens couldn't be properly exploited because the GOP is just as guilty as their 'rivals' in this respect. Who could forget the Bush administration's creation of the Ministry of Information. Even leftists like David Michael Green have noted that:
at least now we can finally answer our pregnant question: Which American president has been the most socialist of all, apart from FDR and LBJ? The (really, really) surprising answer is: George W. Bush.