Are you a Conservative who likes the TV show "24"? If so, then Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writer Eugene Kane has divined why you like it so much. It's because you have "no qualms about torturing" prisoners.
In a gratuitous insult to all intelligent Conservatives everywhere, Mr Kane has declared you all to be slobbering Neanderthals who would rather beat your enemy to death with a club than use diplomacy and that the law obviously means nothing to you.
Some speculate one reason "24" is such a favorite of the Bush crowd is that Bauer is presented as a guy with no qualms about torturing his prisoners in order to get information as quickly as possible. In light of criticism the Bush administration gets for its torture policies, it doesn't take a think-tank expert to see why some hail the show as a breath of clean air.Someone should inform this "writer" that the saying is a "breath of fresh air", not a breath of "clean" air.
In any case, Kane gives all sorts of sly slaps at Conservatives who enjoy the show.
- ...some political types apparently would have no problem with it.
- It's also Rush Limbaugh's and Dick Cheney's favorite show, which suggests there may be something more than just television going on here.
- ...it was apparent to me the appeal of "24" is similar to that of another top-rated series that became the favorite of political types.
- The show's popularity with some political types...
Now let us observe how he wipes the sneer from his face to wax eloquent about the defunct TV show "The West Wing"...
Essentially, "24" is to conservatives what "The West Wing" was to liberals.Ah the cherubs are singing and rainbows have come out. Yes, "president" Bartlett was all "intellectual" and stuff, we are told. His "intellectual optimism" is what appealed to lefties, you see. Heck, it couldn't have been the character's anti-business, socialist ideals that did it, could it?
"The West Wing" was often considered a fantasy version of the Clinton presidency, as faux president Jed Bartlett (Martin Sheen) represented the best of Clinton's intellectual optimism without the nagging intern problem.
Nah. Couldn't be.
Now, it's my turn to try to divine why "some political types" enjoy watching "24".
First and foremost, "24" is just a fun, rollicking adventure with a lead character that is serious about his love for his country, understands the threat under which we live, and is completely aware of what is and is not important during those times when tough decisions must be made.
Jack Bauer is not a lump-headed Neanderthal who merely bashes his way through the Constitution like a bull in a china shop, as Mr. Kane seems to feel. His choices are hard ones that are made in the midst of combat, decisions that are never made nonchalantly. And every hard decision Jack makes is a scar on his soul. We all see his anguish and we feel it with him.
"24" is certainly outlandish in plot and outrageous in the presentation of what really could happen in any 24 hour period. But the moral choices it presents for us to ponder as the show's quick pace relentlessly barrels onward is based on the dangers we face every single day in the world created by the sort of soft-headed, leftism employed by people like our wonderful "president" Bartlett and those in real life who are like him.
And, best of all, Jack is a hero in the best old-school mold. He is sure of himself, proud of his country, but not hateful and callous. He is filled with compassion when it is due and insistent on living up to his given word, even as those around him fail to live up to theirs. His word is his bond and his moral code is absolute.
Jack Bauer is a throw back to the kind of heroes Americans have loved since the dime novel made Wild Bill Hickock famous, since the moving picture brought us "Shane", "High Noon", Gary Cooper and John Wayne.
We don't have to worry about disclaimers, double thinking and mincing around with Jack. He is a real hero. Not some soft, neutered, half-a-man like any Jed Bartlett.
I can only hope that if there were ever any terror cells in Milwaukee, writer Eugene Kane would be lucky enough to have a man like Jack Bauer around to save his rather copious bacon. If not, then he could console himself that his buddy Jed Bartlett could "feel his pain" as he is being blown sky high by some suicide bomber.