Or: Shopping For A Legacy on Cyber Monday
I had the occasion, recently (okay, a stretch; Woke up from a nap on the sofa as it was coming on), to watch a good, funky little movie.
The Marilyn Hotchkiss Ballroom Dancing & Charm School.
It had a few different story arcs, and a boatload of big-name actors in minor roles (Sonia Braga in, essentially, a non-speaking role!). And it jumped back-and-forth from flashbacks to current time.
But through these flashbacks, it was clear that the basic schtick of The Marilyn Hotchkiss Ballroom Dancing & Charm School didn't change, just the players (in the current time, run by her daughter, played by Mary Steenburgen).
Which brings us to this week, and how appropriate that the Annapolis Mideast Summit kicked off today, Cyber Monday, just so The Commander Guy and His Girl Condi could go legacy shopping.
Considering his invasion and occupation of Iraq, and his warmongering against Iran, the support of all that "democracy" breaking out in Pakistan, I have to suspect the Middle East countries attending this summit must have a belief that it is the United States that needs to be sat down at table and slapped around.
And, if you only got your news from the New York Times, you would come away with thinking that everything was already a done deal before the thing even started.
That owing to the illustrious stewardship of our Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice.
Elizabeth Bumiller offered today the biggest, fattest, juiciest wet kiss this side of Mae West, with her 'Ode to Condi', otherwise known as "Rice’s Turnabout on Mideast Talks."
While it's clear Ms. Bumiller is sucking up - big-time - to Rice and the Bush Grindhouse, the piece plays out often, not as a manuscript of a fearless, resolute diplomat, in a career-legacy defining moment, but more like Jean Arthur in "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington".
"Ms. Rice, who had heralded the election as a symbol of the new stirrings of democracy in the Middle East, was so blindsided by the victory that she was startled when she saw a crawl of words on her television screen while exercising on her elliptical trainer the morning after the election: “In wake of Hamas victory, Palestinian cabinet resigns.”And there was no water thrown on the work-wife thing, the Bush-Rice Mutual Admiration Brigade;
“I thought, ‘Well, that’s not right,’” Ms. Rice recalled. When the crawl continued, she got off the elliptical trainer and called the State Department.
“I said, ‘What happened in the Palestinian elections?’” Ms. Rice recalled. “And they said, ‘Oh, Hamas won.’ And I thought, ‘Oh my goodness, Hamas won?’”
"Ms. Rice was able to engineer the administration’s shift in large part because of her extraordinarily close relationship with the president — Mr. Bush “loved Condi,” said Andrew H. Card Jr., the former White House chief of staff — and her ability to move him at critical moments. Mr. Bush, Ms. Rice insisted, is also fully committed to the Annapolis meeting."What's going to happen in one day at Annapolis?
The students in The Condoleezza Rice Ballroom Dancing & Charm School, the Middle East attendees, will reprise their moves of summits past, do the one-two-cha-cha-cha, with lots of puffed up, diplomatically-buzz-word-laden speeches, enough photo-ops to fill an aircraft carrier (one, even with a "Mission Accomplished" banner), dates pushed out to do this, dates pushed out to do that and it all ends with Que Sera Sera blaring over the sound system as The Commander Guy and His Condi Girl gaze into each others' eyes, approvingly.
But then again, they may leave the room, singing;
Georgie and Condi, sittin' in a tree
First comes, Iraq, then comes Iran
Then comes the sale job called Afghanistan
Bonus Condoleezza Rice Ballroom Dancing & Charm School Riffs
The Carpetbagger Report: George and Condi — kindred spirits
Christy Hardin Smith/Firedoglake: American Media: Put Down Lips, Back Away From President’s Behind
Truthout: Annapolis, "Potemkin Village" of Peace
Our Girl Condi Gets A Theme Song - Neocons and Lovers
Top Ten Cloves: Things About Condoleezza Rice Becoming NFL Commissioner