How ABC’s “LOST” and modern politics explain each other

The final season of ABC’s hit drama “Lost” has finally begun to answer six years worth of questions for millions of loyal viewers. And in doing so, has illuminated the numerous parallels between the island world of “Lost” and the modern political scene.

Why the Island is like DC

  1. Your past doesn’t matter. Just like those who are stranded on the island can start anew, it seems a politicians record can also be completely wiped out once elected. In both cases, the playing field is leveled and the only advantage is how long you’ve been around because you know the place better.
  2. There’s a job to do. At this point in the series, the survivors of Oceanic 815 know that there’s a job to do, a further fate and purpose behind their presence on the island. They become active in whatever way they can to find out what it is. In Washington DC, the politicians know they have job to do. The difference is that the survivors are allowed to be unsure of what their job is throughout the series, while politicians prefer to think too much about how they’re going to keep the job they have to do and not enough about what it will take to actually get anything done.
  3. Weird shit goes down. In both the island and DC, there are only a handful of “normal” human interactions. All actions are heightened to the extreme, and every decision becomes the most important decision ever made. The stress levels are palpable in both locations, and people are ready to be impulsive to achieve whatever it is they think is best. Both area’s inhabitants are willing to manipulate, lie, or do whatever it takes to forward their agenda.
  4. Keeps the crazy confined to one place. Much like the example during Lost of the wine bottle being the island keeping the wine inside confined, Washington DC allows Americans to know the craziest and most manipulative, and ideologically driven people are confined to one small area.

Why the Man in Black is like Republican Leadership

  1. Don’t come up with original ideas. The Man in Black can only take on the form of people who have died. The Republican Leadership only say “no” to ideas suggested, rather than coming up with their own.
  2. Can manifest in different forms. The Man in Black can manifest himself as the smoke monster, and can also take on the forms of people who have died on the island. The Republican Leadership can use Fox News pundits and talking heads to tell people what the “want” to hear, so they can get more support behind their cause.
  3. Everything is black and white. For the Man in Black, he considers killing people who make the wrong “choice” justified because he gave them a “choice” (which was presumably to join his group and follow his leadership unquestioningly) or to die. For Republican Leadership, the mantra of either “you’re with us or you’re against us” has been one they’ve followed for years. It seems the choice for Republicans is either that  you will support their ideals and ideas unquestioningly, or that you’re an idiot with nothing to offer this country and, therefore, should move to another.
  4. Feed and prey on fear. We know the Man in Black manipulates people at their most vulnerable and weakest points in order to make it seem like he’s empathetic. In actuality, he wants them to trust and believe him and go along willingly to do whatever necessary evils it make take to get what he wants. And, he makes his followers believe that what he wants is in their best interest, too. So, too, does Republican Leadership use outlandish and doomsday vocabulary in order to make people believe they have the best interest in the country in mind. The passage of a moderate healthcare bill is suddenly “Armageddon”, and a call for all those who fear change to be on edge and alert and ready for orders from the Leadership as to what they can do to regain power and control.
  5. Recruit followers. The Man in Black is “recruiting” followers on his side for some sort of epic battle to be free of the island. A battle he, presumably, needs a strong band of followers to win. The Republican Leadership is “recruiting” followers by drumming up grassroots support throughout the country for some sort of epic ideological battle. With any luck, it is simply a battle to the polls in November 2010, which they need a strong group of followers to win. Worst case scenario, it’s a battle that will manifest itself in some other terrifying way.
  6. As long as someone else has power, they’re unhappy. The Man in Black has said that he will keep killing Jacob replacements in order to keep unilateral control of his power. As long as there is a Jacob replacement on the island, his unilateral power is threatened. The Republican Leadership is also perpetually dissatisfied with all forms of power the President has as long as the President is a Democrat. And as long as they do not have unilateral control of the three branches of government, they fight everything that is proposed tooth and nail to prevent reforms. As long as there is some Democratic leadership, their unilateral control and power is threatened. And that, like the Man in Black, makes them unhappy.
  7. Get others to do their dirty work. The Man in Black can’t technically kill Jacob, so he manipulates others (finally-successfully- Ben Linus) to do it for him. Everyone on the island becomes pawns in a larger power struggle between Jacob and the Man in Black. Republican Leadership can’t technically harm people or specifically ask people to harm them. But, they can manipulate language to make ideological differences seem like the end of the world if those who believe differently are not snuffed out. Or, they can create maps with rifle-scoplelike cross hairs targeting Democrats. Or simply give out addresses to Democratic representatives homes and pretend that it’s not their fault if a gas line is broken days later.

While it’d be logical, then, to say that Jacob would be President Obama and the Democratic leadership, I think that’d be giving the Dems too much credit. As much as I support and like some Democratic policies, I like Jacob a whole lot more. And, for some strange reason, I am much more concerned about what happens to the Island than I am what happens in Washington. But, there are some similarities worth pointing out.

Why Jacob is like the Democratic Leadership

  1. Wants people to decide on their own. Jacob has taken the much more passive and hands-off approach that people can come to their own conclusions about the nature of their own humanity if he simply provides them with the opportunities to test it. He is not directly involved in forcing people to believe one thing or another, and allows them to make the decisions themselves. So, too, does Democratic Leadership take a more passive approach to recruiting followers. Rather than speaking in “fire and brimstone” absolutist talk, it embraces diversity, flexibility, and gray areas.
  2. Has a go-between. Just like Jacob has Richard to be his right hand man, President Obama has Nancy Pelosi to make sure his policies have the legwork to become reality. Jacob’s role exceeds beyond becoming involved in the nitty gritty details of every day Island life and he trusts Richard to work on the ground for him. Obama, too, has plenty of other roles as President than to spend every day in Congress garnering support for policies. So he trusts Pelosi to do it for him.
  3. If need be, will kick ass. In a surprising scene this season, Jacob kicked Richard’s ass when Richard came along to kill him. Rather than passively saying “Know you have a choice” like he did previously (and unsuccessfully) with Ben Linus, he punched, kicked, and beat Richard until he had let go of his ambition to kill him. For Obama- if need be- he can send his bulldog Rahm Emanuel to remedy a threatening or challenging situation. And rest assured that Emanuel is very likely to (metaphorically…we hope) punch, kick, or beat back those who stand in the way of progressive policies.
  4. Can groom but not guarantee his replacement. Just the candidates replace Jacob are handpicked by Jacob, the candidates to replace the President are often handpicked as well. Both leaders can see the potential in a person and similarities in ideologies. But they cannot make the person replace them. The person has to want it bad enough to make that leap of faith themselves.

So, we have to continue to watch the last episodes of “LOST” to see if any light can be shed upon how our modern political battles will turn out. At least in the short run.

In conclusion, vote Fox/Reyes in 2016.

Many question whether Palin is fit for Fox News, claiming she is “unbalanced”

Despite the clear excitement from many of her conservative supporters, many people are now wondering how good a choice it was for Fox News to bring Sarah Palin onto their news team.

The news networks slogan for years has clearly been “fair and balanced,” and though they admit to not caring too much about remaining true to it, many people argue that Palin’s addition is a slap in the face to those who believe that the station should be “fair” and “balanced.” For them, Palin is clearly an unbalanced person, with many issues and demons she faces in the public eye every day.

From stepping down from being governor of Alaska midway through her term in order to finish a set of memoirs and go on a lucrative book tour, to preaching abstinence-only education while having a daughter who becomes a teenage mother, some argue Palin is the definition of someone who is unbalanced in both her career and personal life.

When confronted with the hypocrisy, Fox News representatives replied with a simple, “Meh. She’ll get us good ratings we hope.”

Sarah Palin joins Fox News cast; her new makeup artist quips she’s now “Going Rouge”.

Despite always wearing heavy makeup along the campaign trail to appear fresh and chipper, Sarah Palin faces a new challenge in a world seemingly filled of them for her. She will be a regular commentator on Fox News. This time around, the challenge will be adjusting to having TV makeup put on her before she gets on camera every single time.

Few people are accustomed to the layers of TV makeup that are required in order to look natural on camera. Palin’s new makeup artist, who has been specifically assigned to her every time she goes on air for consistency purposes, joked that Palin is now “Going Rouge” because of the high amount of foundation she’ll be putting on her skin. When making the joke to the former governor, Palin looked at the artist stone faced and said, simply, “It’s Rogue. Going Rogue.” The artist, wanting to make a connection with her new client, joked back, “Oh right-like the X-men!” Palin, remaining stone faced, repeated, “No, like rogue. Like a maverick.” In one final feeble attempt, the artist responded with, “Top Gun style?”. There was a moment of silence between the two woman, which was finally broken by Palin saying, stone faced, “It’s Rogue.”

Despite the pitfalls, the makeup artist still hopes Palin will understand the joke one day and the two can be friends. “At least she didn’t call me the “L” word,” she said. “That liberal title can mean unemployment around here.”

Palin says she will comment on Fox News via satellites on her front porch, claiming to want to “keep an eye on Russia”

Sarah Palin, Fox’s latest newsroom hire, has claimed that she wants to do many of her interviews via satellite in Alaska rather than making the trek to the continental United States. She claims that she needs to keep an eye out for Alaska, even though she’s no longer governor. She says she protects Alaska now by often staying out on her front porch and staring at Russia.

Palin feels more adamantly than ever, given Russia’s current political changes, that it is really important to guard the home front from the front lines. She wants the entire nation to see what a brave citizen she is by staying on her front porch and watching Russia with “snake eyes.”

“Much like the scouts in the wild, wild west who were sent to watch the horizon, so I sit with my eye on the border,” she said, quickly realizing it was a statement profound and poetic enough to Tweet.

When asked how often she would be seen actually in person on the station, she answered, “I hate going into the lion’s den because New York City has so many liberals. But I’ll do it if that’s what my country needs.”

Until her country calls her, however, Palin remains faithful to Alaska by sitting on her front porch and staring into the distance, simply muttering “Stay off my lawn, Ruskies. I know you’re out there,” as do the other old men in neighborhoods all over the world.

Fox News will replace words with colorful drawings on cue cards for new commentator Sarah Palin

Upon signing Sarah Palin as a regular guest commentator on Fox News, immediate changes began to be made all over the station to accommodate her. Any coffee mugs from Caribou Coffee were immediately outlawed, for fear that the former governor would shoot at them upon first sight. All the stations women workers were given specific Palin-style glasses, whether or not they had a prescription that needed them. And, perhaps most significantly, her cue cards were agreed to be changed from words to colorful drawings.

While the rest of the Fox News commentators will use large words on their cue cards, Palin’s representatives say she does better with more general, abstract reminders of the points.

For instance, if there’s a debate on healthcare coverage, it’s more helpful for Palin to see a stick figure labeled “Democrat” with bloody knife standing over a stabbed senior citizen and a small picture of Obama with a Hitler mustache in the corner. Or if the discussion is centering around the economy, it’s helpful for Palin to see a picture of Obama with a turban and a Hitler mustache burning a pile of bills. Or, if the discussion is about terrorism, it’s helpful for her to have a picture of Obama with a Stalin hat on top of his turban and a Hitler mustache in a treehouse with a label of “Secret Meeting! No Republicans allowed!” sitting next to Nancy Pelosi, Hilary Clinton, Osama Bin Ladin, Pol Pot, Stalin, and Hitler himself. All of those people would have to be labeled for clarification, but the general gist should be clear enough to give Palin room to riff on the subject matter for a while.

The colors also help keep her attention span, which has been known to wane on occasion. When called out on her inability to stay on a single subject matter for longer than a few moments, she sighs and simply explains, “I am such a woman!”

Fox News admits using different camera angle on new commentator Sarah Palin, in order to accommodate both her legs and her hair.

New Fox News commentator Sarah Palin is known not only for her hard-line stances on many controversial issues and simple expressions that attempt to reach all Americans. She’s also known for having both brains and beauty. Especially the beauty.

Not since Condoleezza Rice has a person shattered so many stereotypes about what it means to be a woman and conservative. Both Rice and Palin have an extraordinary ability to speak and think like wealthy, old, white men. But, their appearances are quite different.

Palin is what some consider traditionally pretty. She has moderately nice features and puts herself together well. A former beauty pageant contestant, she knows how to hold herself with poise and speak when spoken to, two traits conservative men love.

And conservative men also love her toned legs, which she shows off in both heels and skirts, and her non-threatening updo. For many men, it reminds them that as much power as she might garner, she still cares about what the opposite gender think of her enough to keep her hair long and take time to put it up every morning. And for many conservative women, she is the epitome of retaining elements of your femininity in a liberal world that wants everyone to wear flannel and convert women to lesbianism.

That’s why Fox News will be catering to Palins unique look by creating a very specific camera angle that encompasses both her legs and her hair, to remind viewers why it is they listen to her. That way, they can have the station on mute and still glean all the information from her that they could possibly glean.

When asked to describe this camera angle and how they could possibly always be sure to feature two distinctly different parts of her body, Fox News representatives simply said, “You’ll have to watch and see.”

While speaking directly to the American people on Fox News, Sarah Palin pauses uncomfortably long, apparently awaiting response from the masses

During her first major network commentary on Fox News, new hire Sarah Palin was adamant that she speak directly to the pubic through the cameras. This tactic, which she perfected during the McCain/Palin 08 campaign, is a choice she has become well known for.

This time, however, rather than simply saying what she wants to say to the American public and moving on, she tried a different approach. She waited patiently as the cameras continued to roll. When asked what she was doing, she gave a slight wink and said simply, “Waiting for the American public to respond.”

It was a good two minute pause in the newsroom before anyone could convince Palin that she could not hear directly back from the American people so she needed to move on with the rest of the commentary. She only acquiesced after one of the producers pretended to be a member of the general American public that wanted to tell her everyone was on vacation and couldn’t talk right now, but they’d be back later.

Convinced she had gotten the response she wanted from her pause, she looked around the room and simply said, “Told ya.”

Sarah Palin gets in fight with TelePrompTer, accusing it of having a liberal bias

After being hired on as a regular commentator on Fox News, Sarah Palin has already found the latest scoundrel who is trying to make her look stupid because of its own political, liberal bias. The TelePrompTer that she’d been using to read off of.

“That prompter began moving way too fast, making it difficult to read and making me look like I didn’t know what I was saying,” Palin claims. During the incident, Palin began getting flustered, which started with some unnecessary “don’t know knows” coming out of her mouth and culminated in a single strand of hair coming undone from her updo hairstyle.

When asked how she came to the conclusion that it was the TelePrompTer’s own political agenda that had caused the onscreen breakdown she replied, “Two words: Barack Obama.” According to Palin, because Obama has mastered the art of using a TelePrompTer effectively, he has somehow courted the entire community of TelePrompTers and convinced them to slyly undercut the careers of all conservatives he felt threatened by.

Palin claims that members of the liberal media are all part of this grand conspiracy, but nobody will report on it. Except, now, Fox News. Through her.

“These TelePrompTers need to be called out for what they really are, members of the liberal elite,” she says. Needless to say, the TelePrompTer she was using during the aforementioned incident has been fired, and is currently collecting unemployment. “Typical lazy, social-parasite liberal,” Palin added.

The White House refused to comment on the accusations.

Fox News finally admits not caring about being “fair and balanced”

After days of explaining how their slogan of “fair and balanced” can be justified with hiring of new commentator Sarah Palin, a near demigod to neoconservatives, Fox News representatives have finally admitted to not actually caring about the truth behind their slogan.

“She’ll make us money and attract more of the types of people who watch our programming,” says Rex Freeman, a representative of the station. “Plus, for the types of people who already agree with the overtly biased news we put out, it will seem ‘fair and balanced’ which is all we really care about.”

Fox News came up with the “fair and balanced” slogan after accusations that their news had a clearly conservative bias and spin to their stories. It was their way of saying “nuh-uh!” to many other news stations who went above and beyond to find out all sides of a story before presenting it.

From the beginning of the slogan’s implementation, there was worry that people would think they were a little too over-the-top about it. Like a schoolgirl who blushes and gets flustered when asked if she has a crush on the football team’s captain, adamantly denying that she has any feelings for him at all, Fox News wanted people to know-at least on the surface-that they care about providing good news, not just pandering to a very specific segment of the population and playing up on their fears and worries to make more money.

Despite admitting that the slogan is not exactly the station’s top priority, there is absolutely no talk of getting rid of it. Freeman explains, using the schoolgirl analogy, “You can’t just start saying ‘no comment’ if people ask you if you like somebody. They’re going to assume you do. You have to stay adamant that you don’t, even if it’s obvious the opposite is true.”

Sarah Palin, joining Fox News, redefines meaning of “fair and balanced”

Since exploding onto the political scene as John McCain’s running mate in the 2008 Presidential election, Sarah Palin has been a influential, often-controversial and polarizing figure for many Americans. Her extremely conservative roots and belief systems, combined with her candid and more simple vocabulary, have catapulted her to the forefront of the neo-conservative movement in the Republican party-especially in the wake of a Democratic sweep in the elections of 2008.

Such a strong political figure commands some sort of strong reaction in the gut of many Americans. Those to the right of center tend to love her, those on the left of center tend to hate her and those in the middle tend to ignore her.

Fox News has hired her on to be a regular commentator and part of their political team. The news outlet, which maintains a slogan of “fair and balanced,” believes that she’ll make a great asset to the team. Both Palin and representatives of the news outlet seem to believe that if you repeat something enough times, even if it has no truth behind it, people will start to believe it. Hence, their repetition of how “fair and balanced” their news source is despite hiring the controversial figure.

“The thing about ‘fair and balanced’ is that its meanings are constantly changing,” explains Rex Freeman, a representative for Fox News. “People think they mean giving a full, and unbiased perspective on a story…and that could be accurate. But we like to think of it as meaning we’ll give a partial and biased version of our perspective of a story so people think we’re smart and like to watch us. That way, we get more ratings and more ratings means we can charge more money for commercial time which means, in turn, our station ends up making more money, which means pay increases all around,” he adds.

Having Palin on the station, a woman who has become notorious for saying rather outlandish or indecipherable things, will be a seeming gold mine for the news station. And working to get more money, to Fox, is the current definition of “fair and balanced.”