Friday, October 31, 2008

It Takes a Brit to Put Our Politics Into Perspective

Tonight, Keith Olbermann interviewed former Monty Python star John Cleese. The interview is fairly long and touches on a number of issues, but Cleese makes one point exceedingly well (beginning at about 1:50). Watch the whole video if you're a Cleese fan; I'll provide a mini-transcript of the part that I'm referring to below:

Here's the part that really caught my attention:
I think the problem, the problem came when they all wanted George W. to be President because he was someone they could have a beer with. You know, someone you feel comfortable with. I don't want a President I feel comfortable with. I want a President who's so damn smart and well-informed and sharp and a good assessor of people that if I was there I'd just keep my mouth shut so that he didn't realize what a fool I was, you know? But that seems to be the opposite of what a certain kind of -- I don't know if I should say Republican, but largely it seems Republican voters want someone who's going to be comfortable with. And you know, the Americans are terrific about not being envious about money compared with the Europeans. They seem to be very envious about intelligence. And the idea of actually being with someone who's sort of intelligent, well-informed, and educated, you know Ivy League coll- [Cleese makes a funny face and funny noises] not a proper American, you know? And there's a sort of envy of that with the result that they want someone that they'd be comfortable with who is not going to be terribly bright or very highly intelligent or awfully sharp or a very good judge of people. Considering its for the job, it's the most powerful man in the world, it's rather alarming.
I guess it takes a Brit to put our politics into perspective.

Update: Oops. Forgot to give the post a title...


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