Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Rambo, Karl Rove, The Gallant People of Afghanistan

I have a friend who swears by "First Blood" the first Rambo movie. He's a smart guy, and I normally respect his opinion, I don't know about this one though. I haven't actually seen any Rambo movie ever, until this afternoon. Today, I watched Rambo III, at the recommendation of Marco. A movie dedicated to "the gallant people of Afghanistan". It was hilariously over the top, even biting the idea of an inappropriately under aged sidekick from Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom. Rambo fights alongside the mujaheddin in Afghanistan, saving his friend so the Americans can continue to supply rockets to the founders of the Taliban and al queda. After a ridiculous battle scene where, I shit you not, a tank crashes into a helicopter, head on.

I think that Stallone spent all of his time and money thinking that one scene up. The rest of the movie is just hodgepodged madness. The Afghani version of Short Round wasn't the only trick stolen from another, better movie. In the last hand to hand combat scene, where Rambo fights a very large Zangief-like Russian. While held in an inescapable bear hug by Zangief, Rambo notices the grenade on his nemesis' vest, pulls the key on the grenade, and boom. Completely stolen from the end of Raising Arizona.
The best part was when, in the fiery aftermath of the battle, his sidekick who looks a lot like the Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, asks him if he'll stay and fight. To which Rambo replies, "Maybe next time". Oh, I laughed so hard as Rambo and his buddy ride off to the Pakistan border in a bombed out Russian Jeep. It's so funny to see how the jingoism machine swings from side to side so quickly. I've got to give props to Stallone for not going back to fight his former friends in the new Rambo movie that they're making. He's saving Christian missionaries in Burma or something ridiculous like that. It'll still suck, though.
I was pretty much isolated during the trip to the beach, so I wasn't prepared for the fantastic and vexing news of Karl Rove's resignation, when I heard about it late last night. And I'm not sure what to make of it still. Admittedly, the time that I would normally have spent reading articles about this was spent watching Rambo III. (I thought that it would have served as a good frame for this post, or maybe I just wanted to lay down after a long lunch today). Either way, I suspect that Karl Rove's resignation might be part of some complicated political deal between the Democrats and Bush. This does sound a little out there, and maybe I'm thinking this way because I've seen every episode of The West Wing, but the timing doesn't make sense. Not in a "I'm resigning because there's nothing left for me to do with such a short amount of time left in this administration" way, because, there's plenty of time for him to continue tramping all over the Constitution. And it doesn't make sense in a "there's a lot of political pressure for me to resign" way, because the Plame case would have been a much better time for that kind of resignation. No, I think this is a move in a game of brinkmanship between the President and the Congress.
Okay, so here's what I think. I was completely flabbergasted by the Dem's vote to give Alberto Gonzalez more power of the warrantless wiretapping. It just could not be explained in a satisfactory manner to me. So, maybe the Dems gave Bush what he wanted for Karl Rove to resign. But where does that leave both parties? What do the Dems actually gain from the resignation of Karl Rove. Well, more leverage to get him and any other advisors to testify, would be one thing. Is there anything that the Dems can get out of what they gave Bush? Are they doing this with the thought that they'll indict Gonzalez for perjury and Rove for masterminding the whole AG firings, anyway? I hope so. I'm holding out with optimism. I've been let down by the politicians in Washington again and again and again. And I'm not sure what kind of optimism mine is, the optimism for a constitutional showdown between two branches of the federal government, is that actually optimism? Am I just the guy in the lunchroom that goes from table to table, looking for anyone who's arguing and starts chanting "fight! fight!"?

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