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June 20, 2003
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"If some tinhorn terrorist wants me, tell him to come and get me! I'll be at home, waiting for the bastard!" These were the brave words spoken by President George W. Bush on September 11th, 2001. Or at least they were according to the upcoming Showtime Original Movie now filming, scheduled to air on the second anniversary of the attacks. Labelled as a "docudrama" mixing filmed scenes with actual 9/11 footage, the film will co-star 24 actress Penny Johnson and feature George Takai as Norman Mineta. Go ahead, read that again. It'll brace you for when you realize the actor playing George Bush seems slightly familiar.
posted by XQUZYPHYR (47 comments total)

 
Also discussed in this WarFilter thread. Puketastic indeed.
posted by homunculus at 3:20 PM on June 20, 2003


You know, I'd much rather see the real idiot himself in "Journeys with George" which has never been aired again after it's original showing on HBO.
posted by zekinskia at 3:36 PM on June 20, 2003


Yeah, anyone got a copy of that I can borrow btw?
posted by zekinskia at 3:46 PM on June 20, 2003


Sources here confirmed the generally heroic portrayal of the president and his aides, including the dramatic scene in which Bush is hopscotching the country in Air Force One as a security precaution. When a Secret Service agent questions the order to fly back to Washington by saying, "But Mr. President -- , " Bush replies firmly, "Try 'Commander in Chief.' Whose present command is: Take the president home!"

*cries*

recent history and tv movies don't really mix -- you need at least a few decades perspectives. I liked Frankenheimer's George Wallace and his Path to War, and A Bright Shining Lie, too

also I liked Thirteen Days: good movie, reasonably accurate. and the always excellent Bruce Greenwood gives us what is probably the most interesting JFK ever seen on screen

zekinskia
I think there's a few mpegs around Kazaa/WinMx/Xnap etc
posted by matteo at 3:56 PM on June 20, 2003


tinhorn? TINHORN????
posted by quonsar at 4:03 PM on June 20, 2003


I liked it better when they cast Yosimite Sam...
posted by Perigee at 4:19 PM on June 20, 2003


Bruce Greenwood gives us what is probably the most interesting JFK ever seen on screen.

Other than Zapruder's JFK, of course. That is the most interesting by far.
posted by falameufilho at 4:20 PM on June 20, 2003




Directed by Leni Riefienstal?

*rimshot*

But really, how isn't this like the Ministry of Truth? It's blatant propoganda. It's offensive on its face. Wow, I reference Nazis and Orwell in one post! Gowdin just inverted himself!
posted by solistrato at 4:27 PM on June 20, 2003


Bush is hopscotching the country in Air Force One as a security precaution. When a Secret Service agent questions the order to fly back to Washington

...to fetch a change of underpants...
posted by George_Spiggott at 4:36 PM on June 20, 2003


Take an incoherent political program that is so dumb it's country-music stupid ( "How stupid is it? It's country-music stupid"), add a media-brushed action figure operated by Karl Rove, and voila: an American Fascist Mannequin for 2004. It's a formula that will be hard to beat.
posted by urbanrubbish at 4:39 PM on June 20, 2003


And Jerry Mathers as the quonsar
posted by y2karl at 4:54 PM on June 20, 2003


But really, how isn't this like the Ministry of Truth? It's blatant propoganda. It's offensive on its face.

No! It's clearly going to be a fair and balanced docudrama! After all, they had highly respected independent members of the media consulting on the script's accuracy:

In researching "D.C. 9/11," Chetwynd had access to top White House officials, including Bush. What's more, Chetwynd ran the script past a group of conservative Washington pundits, including Fred Barnes, Charles Krauthammer and Morton Kondracke.

*snickers*
posted by pitchblende at 4:56 PM on June 20, 2003


Time to start lobbying the king of docuganda to get a remix ready for release on the third anniversary.
posted by alms at 4:57 PM on June 20, 2003


Fred Barnes, Charles Krauthammer and Morton Kondracke

The Three Stooges of the Apocalypse
posted by y2karl at 5:11 PM on June 20, 2003


"Whose present command is: bring me some more pre-chewed pretzels!"
posted by uosuaq at 5:26 PM on June 20, 2003


solistrato: how is it "propoganda?" Looks to me like it's being produced and owned by a private company, not released by DoD or the White House. How is this different than, say, Stone's "JFK" or Moore's claptrap?
posted by davidmsc at 5:41 PM on June 20, 2003


davidmsc....be quiet, please.

I can't wait to see it...if it's as absurd as it sounds, it is certainly bound to be a late night classic. I just hope they find a way to work Bush-in-his-air-force-suit into the movie. I mean, he is being portrayed as "generally heroic." Generally speaking, heroes wear air force pilot suits.
posted by ghastlyfop at 7:19 PM on June 20, 2003


davidmsc: Since when does propaganda have to be government created? The dictonary defines it as:

The systematic propagation of a doctrine or cause or of information reflecting the views and interests of those advocating such a doctrine or cause.
posted by delmoi at 8:00 PM on June 20, 2003


How is this different than, say, Stone's "JFK" or Moore's claptrap?

It's much, much funnier.
posted by moonbiter at 8:02 PM on June 20, 2003


The very idea of this is offensive to all of us who went to work that day in lower Manhattan and came back covered in dust, dealing with recurring nightmares of the carnage, memories of suddenly lost friends and the putrid smell of burning jet fuel and asbestos that lingered for more than two months thereafter.

The world collapsed around us in the span of an hour, while our craven, gutless president cris-crossed the country in an attempt to save his ass from unspecified threats on AF One... and gave terse, halting speeches about nothing from the bunker while he pulled his head out of his ass long enough to do his job.

And now, a few filmakers are trying to make him look macho and heroic? There isn't enough profanity in the world to cover how this makes me feel.
posted by psmealey at 8:36 PM on June 20, 2003


solistrato: how is it "propoganda?" Looks to me like it's being produced and owned by a private company, not released by DoD or the White House. How is this different than, say, Stone's "JFK" or Moore's claptrap?

"However, Chetwynd acknowledges that he began the project as a "great admirer" of the president. Chetwynd is among the few outspokenly conservative producers in Hollywood, and one of the few with close ties to the White House. His 2000 Showtime film "Varian's War" (about an American who rescued French Jews from the Nazis) was screened at the executive mansion for the president and Mrs. Bush. In late 2001, President Bush appointed him to the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities."

About a 'generally heroic portrayal' of a sitting president? Who happens to be up for reelection soon? Close enough for me, anyway.
posted by snarkywench at 9:21 PM on June 20, 2003


Somewhere in America a child watches the McLaughlin Report each week and says to all around him Someday, I want to grow up to be just like Fred Barnes. This child is the AntiChrist and we must hunt him down and kill him.
posted by y2karl at 10:12 PM on June 20, 2003


I heard the makers of "Jackass: The Movie" are suing for copyright infringement.
posted by RavinDave at 10:25 PM on June 20, 2003


re-reading this thread, especially psmealey's heartfelt comment, and thinking about that terrible day, if we want to be fair it's impossible not to consider how it'd have taken Teddy Roosevelt's or Kennedy's brass balls not to be a little intimidated -- or even "WWIII has now begun" scared -- after the towers fell. Bush's performance of course -- definitely his television performance, and probably, unless future historians dig up new documents and testimony, his actions in the Florida school and on Air Force One -- it was all far from heroic, but again, not every President has Teddy Roosevelt's temperament. Also keep in mind that Bush was a very inexperienced President, only eight months in the White House, and no prior foreign affairs or national security experience (voters knew that in 2000, in fact, and didn't care very much about candidates foreign policy experience, apparently)

of course, Giuliani acted in a very different way on 9-11. it's a question of character -- Bush lacks that special ballsy thing, OK? But _that_ doesn't necessarily make him a bad president. What makes a bad president is things like the Patriot Act and Ashcroft and the tax cuts and crony capitalism and corporate welfare and enemy combatants and Jose Padilla and the attack on Welfare and deep cuts in social spending and fiscal irresponsibility and the WMD deception and National Sanctity of Life Day and extreme right-wing or racist judicial nominees etc etc etc ad infinitum.

that's the important stuff. the "he's no Teddy Roosevelt" charge does not really stick -- who in nowadays politics is, by the way?

of course creating the fiction of Bush-as-Harrison-Ford on Air Force One on 9-11 is inexcusable bullshit FoxNews-tvmovie-of-the-day propaganda. but still
posted by matteo at 3:06 AM on June 21, 2003


What matteo said.
posted by eustacescrubb at 4:13 AM on June 21, 2003


How is this different than, say, Stone's "JFK" or Moore's claptrap?
Well for one thing, JFK isn't running for re-election.
posted by CrazyJub at 7:00 AM on June 21, 2003


the actor playing George Bush seems slightly familiar

This one fact alone gives me some hope that what we're looking at is That's My Bush: The Motion Picture.

Incidentally, when this was mentioned on NPR last week, it was with the much more ridiculous title, The Big Dance.
posted by mikrophon at 7:28 AM on June 21, 2003


What matteo said.

hear hear
posted by y2karl at 8:29 AM on June 21, 2003


it's a question of character -- Bush lacks that special ballsy thing, OK? But _that_ doesn't necessarily make him a bad president.

And I'm not necessarily going to judge character based only on whether or not you felt like rolling into the fetal position on Sept. 11. (I sure as hell did, and I live 500 miles from NYC.)

But character *is* about how you live your whole bleeping life. I know I'm preaching to the choir here, but the fact he allows himself to be puffed up by these lying toadies to get himself re-selected doesn't exactly raise my opinion of him. Especially as this follows so closely that galling image of (occasional) Air National Guard Boy playing war hero on the aircraft carrier.

Of course, the more I think about it, the scariest part is that Bush thinks he is that Hero.
posted by NorthernLite at 8:53 AM on June 21, 2003


When I thought of this putrid stuff being served up to the American public, and then of the comparisons to Leni Riefenstahl's work, a proper name for this Bush Propumentary came to mind:

"The sloshing of the swill"
posted by troutfishing at 9:34 AM on June 21, 2003


One phrase: MST3K Reunion Special.
posted by owillis at 9:51 AM on June 21, 2003


But character *is* about how you live your whole bleeping life.

Except the "private" parts of it, as we learnt during the Lewinsky affair, where it becomes acceptable to perjure one's self before a grand jury. Matteo's right - Bush is a bad president, but he's a bad president because he uses his power unwisely and injustly. I mean, how many of the folks carping about Bush acting like a coward by not presenting himself as a highly visible target in the aftermath of a chaotic and turbulent event of then-unknown scale also happen to think that the invasion of Afghanistan might've been a bit hasty and ill-planned?
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 10:05 AM on June 21, 2003


I mean, how many of the folks carping about Bush acting like a coward by not presenting himself as a highly visible target in the aftermath of a chaotic and turbulent event of then-unknown scale also happen to think that the invasion of Afghanistan might've been a bit hasty and ill-planned?

On MeFi, seems like just about everybody, and if you think otherwise, you get a davidmsc....be quiet, please....We don't wanna piss on the collective think tank here, now do we?
posted by jmd82 at 10:29 AM on June 21, 2003


jmd82: blame repetition & boredom, not the kind of imaginary lefty-groupthink you seem to have in mind; when you've heard the same arguments a dozen times over and still aren't convinced, it's hard to work up the energy to actually engage with them.
posted by Mars Saxman at 10:46 AM on June 21, 2003


Mars: Thats no excuse for telling people to shut up just because they offer a difference of opinion. David was pretty much asking questions that hadn't been anwered before (with only snarky remarks), though some people did answer his questions later on in the thread quite well.
posted by jmd82 at 10:51 AM on June 21, 2003


"...when you realize the actor playing George Bush seems slightly familiar"

I just want him to say, just once: "One of these days Laura, I'm gonna punch you in the face!"
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:19 AM on June 21, 2003


For those that don't know, our president was reading stories about goats to children in elementary school in Florida while the attacks were occurring. There are plenty of unanswered questions about his actions on that day. This article (via Warfilter) is an extensively footnoted minute by minute explanation of what he did and didn't do.
posted by euphorb at 11:35 AM on June 21, 2003


I mean, how many of the folks carping about Bush acting like a coward by not presenting himself as a highly visible target in the aftermath of a chaotic and turbulent event of then-unknown scale also happen to think that the invasion of Afghanistan might've been a bit hasty and ill-planned?

What sort of comparison is this? Because we object to his disappearing act during a national emergency we're supposed to accept a vast, ruthless act of pointless vengeance? That makes no sense whatsoever. The problem with Afghanistan was not that it was hasty or ill-planned, it's that it had no objective than to slake desire for revenge, to be seen to be doing something. Al Qaeda is reported to be operating unimpeded in Afghanistan, the Taliban is resurgent, Bush is pretending he never really intended to get Bin Laden ("remember dead or alive") our guy doesn't control much beyond Kabul and the hated French and Germans are doing our dirty work for us there now.

He's a liar, a coward and a vicious bully who doesn't even try to defend America -- he just uses the Clinton military to jerk himself off with.
posted by George_Spiggott at 12:38 PM on June 21, 2003


Interesting to note that "The Big Dance" was actually shot in Toronto. I worked for a short time on the cursed thing. Nothing crushes your soul like making another nation's propaganda.

*hangs head*

Apparently a Giuliani TV movie was shot in Montreal. Maybe this is some sort of free trade thing.
posted by psychoticreaction at 1:17 PM on June 21, 2003


to be seen to be doing something.

Which is what psmealey seems to've wanted, given by this statement:

our craven, gutless president cris-crossed the country in an attempt to save his ass from unspecified threats on AF One... and gave terse, halting speeches about nothing from the bunker while he pulled his head out of his ass long enough to do his job.

Versus say, flying to Afghanistan to engage in a ferocious hand-to-hand battle to the death with Osama bin Laden himself on a narrow catwalk suspended between remnants of the two toppled Buddhas, after having slain the gathered mooks of Al Qaeda who had tried to stop this momentous struggle from occurring.

My point is simply this - if you demand spectacles, you'll get them. That you wanted the "National Therapist" circus and got the "Blood and Violence" show is your problem. You demand Bush act like a leader. Well, he did. That it's Mein Fuhrer instead of the Pope is because Bush is who he is.
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 7:24 AM on June 22, 2003


That you wanted the "National Therapist" circus and got the "Blood and Violence" show is your problem.

Did psmealy say he wanted the "'National Therapist' circus", or is that something you made up?

How about a real investigation followed by a genuine attempt to get those responsible? Trouble is, if you follow the money, the first place it takes you is to highly-placed people in the Saudi Gov't. and royal family. Follow any further, and in particular look for who stood to gain, and you'll find... what?

The Bushies don't seem to want us to find out, given that they've forestalled and suppressed investigation at every turn. But I do have one question: who benefited from the WTC attacks?
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:19 AM on June 22, 2003


But I do have one question: who benefited from the WTC attacks?

And we all know the answer to that.
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 11:27 PM on June 22, 2003


I can't wait to see this fine piece of documentary film. Finally I'll understand how it was that President Bush saw the first plane hitting the tower on live TV.
posted by soyjoy at 7:57 AM on June 23, 2003


Did psmealy say he wanted the "'National Therapist' circus", or is that something you made up?

In fact, he said: "The world collapsed around us in the span of an hour, while our craven, gutless president cris-crossed the country in an attempt to save his ass from unspecified threats on AF One... "

Do you expect "a real investigation followed by a genuine attempt to get those responsible?" to take less than a day? If not, then what does it matter if Bush was busy flying to every airport in the US or not on September 11th? Simply this: he was too busy trying to save his own ass to stand around giving America the public equivalent of a big warm fuzzy hug.

Follow any further, and in particular look for who stood to gain, and you'll find... what?

That the Saudi family funded Osama bin Laden to save their own asses. Oh no! And Bush _knows_ these people? Heavens! Obviously distant family connections with reprehensible people makes one a terrible president! Like that JFK guy. Good thing America didn't elect him.

Look, GWB is a bad president because he didn't catch Osama bin Laden, among many other things. That's not under question. The question is, is he a bad president because he's cowardly and greedy and didn't give America a gentle punch in the shoulder while saying, in an appropriately mid-western gravel-toned voice "Buck up there, little partner"? And the answer is no, those aren't qualities that matter to being a president compared to say, sound policy and demonstrating due respect for the law. You're trying to conflate his personal characteristics with his presidential ones, and in doing so, you open up a whole can of worms, least of all the Lewinsky scandal. If Bush is a bad president because he's a shady character, Clinton was the anti-christ. And I think we can both agree, Clinton was actually a pretty decent president, so this ad hominem nonsense is just that.
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 10:12 AM on June 23, 2003


That the Saudi family funded Osama bin Laden to save their own asses.

And you know this... how?

distant family connections

I like that "distant". Nice touch. How distant, exactly? How significant is that distance with respect to this issue? Why do you choose to say "distant" here?

Do you expect "a real investigation followed by a genuine attempt to get those responsible?" to take less than a day?

I would expect it to happen at some point. It hasn't. Why is that? In the meantime, getting back to the topic of this thread, the film quotes him as expressing heroic defiance and disregard for his own safety around the time of the attacks. My point was that we never saw any such thing, and no such thing was reported. All we saw was the opposite. This relates directly to the subject under discussion.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:30 AM on June 23, 2003


And you know this... how?

Uh, well there's the fact that Prince Bandar's wife was reported to've given money to a cover charity for the 9/11 hijackers by the AP. So my answer is "by reading the news from time to time". Try it sometime, you'll learn all sorts of fun things.

I like that "distant". Nice touch. How distant, exactly? How significant is that distance with respect to this issue? Why do you choose to say "distant" here?

I like how you have to quibble over my use of the word "distant" rather than attack the point itself. Why did you choose to repeat the word "distant" constantly in a rhetorical attempt to sound like you're discrediting it rather than offer a contravening fact?

I would expect it to happen at some point.

Yes, but this thread isn't all you, you, you, Spiggie. Psmealey, who you might recall made the comments under discussion here, was complaining about how Bush didn't do anything on 9/11.

Why is that?

The obvious answer is because bin Laden and Bush are engaged in a secret conspiracy to undermine America and B. is now engaged in a dastardly plot to hide the evidence! Or maybe, it's because the intelligence instutions in government are looking for ways to save their asses.

My point was that we never saw any such thing, and no such thing was reported. All we saw was the opposite. This relates directly to the subject under discussion.

It hasn't since psmealey and matteo's posts in this thread, actually. And if that's your "point" now, what the hell have we been arguing about, and why haven't you mentioned it in this discussion before? I certainly didn't contest that Bush didn't do a damn thing on 9/11. If you're going to play "change the topic whenever I start losing", I'm not going to bother to continue this discussion.
posted by Pseudoephedrine at 11:29 AM on June 24, 2003


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