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Friday, September 29, 2006

Oliver, Stoned

The proper response to people who blow up buildings, lop off journalist's heads with machetes, use children as human shields — that kind of frivolity — is to learn to live with them. This sage advice comes to us from Oliver Stone, the movie maker who became a rich man by mongering cinematic paranoia about the death of JFK. Stone says the money we've spent fighting radical jihadists would have better been directed at fighting "poverty, death, disease, the planet itself and fixing things in our own homes." This is a guy who believes we haven't spent enough money to eradicate poverty. Let's do the math. America has spent roughly $6.6 trillion spent on poverty-related programs in the four decades since President Johnson, with America's black community intended as a primary beneficiary. In the 1950s, America's black middle class was robust. By 2000 there were 791,600 black men in prison and 603,032 enrolled in college. Perhaps Mr. Stone would have us keep spending money until there are no remaining black men in college, which presumably will confirm his frequent assertion that America is a fascist state. With that achievement under our belts, we could use the same spending paradigm to tackle death, another issue that Stone wants addressed. Has it occurred to you that death is continuing "problem" because we haven't devoted enough federal money to wiping it out? Above all, the director of "Natural Born Killers" (a movie that exalted children murdering their aging parents using methods that would make Charles Manson wince) wants America to focus on "fixing things in our own homes." Who better to turn to for guidance than Oliver Stone? In 1999 Stone pled no contest to DUI and guilty to a drug-possession charge. Six years later Stone got arrested for driving drunk and possessing drugs. Then he had an affair and got a divorce. Oliver Stone's definitely a guy I want leading the charge for personal responsibility and family values. Let's get busy teaching young people to emulate Oliver Stone's model: Get drunk, go for a drive carrying illegal drugs, cheat on your wife, stand up in other countries and brag about how "ashamed" you are to be a citizen of a nation that gives you the freedom to return and keep earning fabulous amounts of money. The pilot program for Oliver Stone's approach has been extremely successful in Hollywood in recent years. All the more reason why the national version needs funding now.