January 27, 2010

Ba Rack Obama Rama O Gaga

Ba Rack Obama Rama O Gaga
what a nice curtsy
I'm having a hard time understanding whats happening. Reading the so called culture. I feel blind. Like I"m looking right at it but I don't know what it is ( which is what my dad used to say about the political situation in Jerusalem). So yesterday I started making a Venn diagram of the things, events people etc that seem to be breaking through the murky top waters and into the light of our collective gaze. Lady Gaga, Barack Obama, The Jersey Shore, The Tea Party Movement, Corporate greed, foreclosures, unemployment, Haiti ( but our fascination there is not even Haiti, its the catastrophe itself), plastic surgery... Am I missing anything? I left off late night television wars, Avatar, failed elections in US occupied regions ....they were close but didn't make the list.

So what are we to make of these things, what do they have in common, what sets them apart? Why is this Lady Gaga's perfect moment? The issues effecting our immediate well being are easy to understand, I know why unemployment is on everyone's mind, because 1 in 5 american men is without work ok I get that. But what do Lady Gaga, Barack Obama and The Jersey Shore have in common?

When I look at that list Gaga, Obama, Jersey Shore, plastic surgery, Tea Parties on the one hand and dismal unemployment, joblesseness, and corporate greed on the other its pretty easy to see that people are stressed to the point of delusion, we are abandoning the future and getting caught up in dramas of the moment--- Is she really wearing leather vinyl to meet the goddamn queen of England? Does everyone on the Jersey Shore have fake pecs? Is Obama who I thought he was?

But aren't we always caught up in the drama of the moment, thats why we love championships, bitter divorces, thats why we are attracted to car crashes and catastrophes, that blinding moment---"I can't believe it." We love it. But do we love it more now than we used to, do we NEED it now?

Here is another thing, and maybe I"m reaching-- Lady Gaga is a sweet Italian girl from New York City trussed up in an elaborate pop disguise, she is a walking superlative a multimedia hyperbole -- but she is ALSO and this is obvious everytime she opens her mouth-- a bit of a freak, a misfit, completely lacking the inscrutable uber discipline of say, Madonna (and don't forget Madonna rose in the age of Margaret Thatcher and I dare you to Venn diagram that!). So there IS something about these people breaking through right now-- they are strangely real, really strange-- they are fakes but we know it, they are post ironic, almost sincere.

Thats why its awful to see Obama flanked by Rahm Emmanuel and Tim Geithner, who are most certainly not sincere. At least Lady Gaga has the sense to put her dancers in latex masks, at least we know she holds the leash when recess starts.