Javier Marias has an article in the New Republic, pointing out that no matter how terrible your predicament, one can’t help but compare it to something seen on television or in popular film. The same goes for our perceptions of our political leaders:
And isn’t the president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, with his vociferous curses against the United States, the small, fat, childish king who makes appearances in the Tintin and Capitan Trueno adventures? (It’s easy to imagine Chavez dressed in a pointed crown and christening robe and baring his barrel chest.)
And isn’t Russian Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin the spitting image of the cold-blooded assassin who shoots when the cymbals sound in the 1956 Alfred Hitchcock film, “The Man Who Knew Too Much”?
Doesn’t Sarah Palin, with her spiky bangs, strange glasses and fanatical determination, resemble the KGB spies in films about the Cold War?
Doesn’t President Nicolas Sarkozy of France resemble a buskined Mighty Mouse, always ready to fly off to some far-flung corner of the world to solve a problem?
If you keep thinking, you’ll see that there are real reasons to be alarmed by this wave of fictional resemblances, because the trouble is, life is very much for real.