The Stepford Candidate

(2 pm. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

If you’ve never seen The Stepford Wives you’ll have to head for wiki and/or YouTube to get a basic rundown. If the 2004 Nicole Kidman version is what you recall then find and watch the original 1975 copy. That movie had a tremendous cultural impact at the time. If you’re a boomer, you remember seeing it that first time.

In a Wiki nutshell:

The premise involves the married men of the fictional town of Stepford, Connecticut, and their fawning, submissive, impossibly beautiful wives. The protagonist is Joanna Eberhart, a talented photographer newly arrived from New York City with her husband and children, eager to start a new life. As time goes on, she becomes increasingly disturbed by the zombie-like, submissive Stepford wives, especially when she sees her once independent-minded friends – fellow new arrivals to Stepford – turn into mindless, docile housewives overnight. Her husband, who seems to be spending more and more time at meetings of the local men’s association, mocks her fears.

As the story progresses, Joanna becomes convinced that the wives of Stepford are being poisoned or brainwashed into submission by the men’s club. She visits the library and reads up on the pasts of Stepford’s wives, finding out that some of the women were once feminist activists and very successful professionals, while the leader of the men’s club is a former Disney engineer and others are artists and scientists, capable of creating life-like robots. Her friend Bobbie helps her investigate, going so far as to write to the EPA to inquire about possible environmental toxins in Stepford. However, eventually, Bobbie is also transformed into a docile housewife and has no interest in her previous activities.

At the end of the novel, Joanna decides to flee Stepford, but when she gets home she finds that her children have been taken. She asks her husband to let her leave, but he takes her car keys. She manages to escape from the house on foot, and several of the men’s club members track her down. They corner her in the woods and she accuses them of creating robots out of the town’s women. The men deny the accusation, and ask Joanna if she would believe them if she saw one of the other women bleed. Joanna agrees to this, and they take her to Bobbie’s house. Bobbie’s husband and son are upstairs, with loud rock music playing – as if to cover screams. The scene ends as Bobbie brandishes a knife at her former friend. In the story’s epilogue, Joanna has become another Stepford wife gliding through the local supermarket, and has given up her career as a photographer, while Ruthanne (a new resident in Stepford) appears poised to become the conspiracy’s next victim.

The clue that gave Bobbie away was she couldn’t remember a word she’d used in conversation the day before – something like “donut”. Software problem. It’s always the software.

(I can’t get the iframe embed to work so head to youtube for the shopping market final scene. It gives a good sense of the bot-like life style.)

Mitt has all the common humanity of a Stepford Wife. None.

Mitt has been to Stepford. In fact, Mitt was raised and went to school in Stepford. Mitt is of Stepford. Mitt is informed by Stepford. Mitt lives in Stepford(s). All Mitt’s acquaintances live in Stepford. Mitt believes in Stepford as a state of being.

The rest of the world is just props and inconvenient, awkward encounters with others. Mitt has to do these scenes for the tube. He has to do them because he wants to be president. These others have to vote for him so he gets to pretend to be one of them convincingly enough for the next five months. Why he wants to be president is a good question. So far, his only rationale seems to be reducing the tax burden on the Stepford class.

Another thing Mitt has to do is make statements. These come in two forms: disparaging his opponent and promoting his own positions. He’s actually pretty good at the former because he has no conscience or regard for the truth. Those are built-in capabilities in Staapford-class candidates. They are personality assets. (This assumes a personality. Hey, at least he hosed the dog down. One cred bit.) It’s the latter statements that define the “real” Mitt.

To this writer, and former subject of the governor, this is classic Mitt:

‘I’m Not Familiar Precisely With Exactly What I Said, But I Stand By What I Said Whatever It Was’

That statement defines Mitt like none other. Personally, I like to think of him as The Stepford Chameleon because he can move effortlessly from one non-position to another. Imagine what the press would do to his opponent if he said something like that.

‘I’m Not Familiar Precisely With Exactly What I Said, But I Stand By What I Said Whatever It Was’

This could be one of the greatest political position statements of all time. It means anything and everything and stands for absolutely nothing. Just like the Stepford Candidate. We’ve seen some great prevaricators from that precinct before but at least they meant what they said no matter how bone-headed it was (think the president who-shall-not-be-named).

‘I’m Not Familiar Precisely With Exactly What I Said, But I Stand By What I Said Whatever It Was’

Memorize this. This should be Mitt’s epitaph.

Hold on to your dreams. They may be all we’re left with in the end.


Skip to comment form

    • RUKind on June 14, 2012 at 07:02

    And I hope I only posted this once. 😉

    • RUKind on June 15, 2012 at 04:58
    • TMC on June 16, 2012 at 15:21

    that the Republicans could nominate, not that the rest of the field was any better. We voters have been given no real choice for president. Even though President Obama is certainly more coherent and has greater appeal, his policies are no better.

    That said, all the Democrats need do to get Obama reelected is make a campaign video of Romney’s gaffs and Grover Norquist’s statement: “Pick a Republican with enough working digits to handle a pen to become president of the United States.” And yes, there is a video of Norquist making that “cute” statement at this year’s CPAC conference.

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