Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Hysterical Authority

One can pick up almost anything written by Heinlein, and find some extremely interesting veiws on authority, but I find in rather unsurprising that in the current incarnation of Star Trek, James Tiberius Kirk has all the leadership skills of a sex-crazed, ego-driven, hissy fit pulling Hollywood producer. Unfortunately for the series, Star Trek was always weakly fobbing off arguments for socialism, but apparently Hollywood has been so long bereft of the truly creative that they are now stuck transmitting the truth of their own situation.

See, the thing is, the hissy-fit pulling egomaniac in Hollywood can often make some pretty good money. It's not that they are bankrupting the place- no, the costs of their behavior are unseen; it's the great entertainment that isn't made, that's what we are missing. We have great trouble computing what hasn't been made, so when some Hollywood type launches into a tirade, browbeats everybody into doing it his way, and makes a reasonable film, he comes out looking like he was right.

Politicians play this game too, and much more so now, since apparently the President can fire C.E.Os of companies and dictate terms in what should have been an unbiased bankruptcy case. And all for the exact same reasons the writers gave the new Captain Kirk- mysteriously, perhaps by being informed by a time traveler, Obama has the secret knowledge that will make all his decisions turn out to be right.

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