Monday, February 07, 2005

Super War America

Following the entertaining exchange between Juan Cole & Jonah Goldberg, I came across this sitting on the National Review's Corner:

"I just wanted to pass along a short story from [watching the Super Bowl] last night. I am currently doing a Ph.D. in History at a prestigious northeastern university, and with one possible exception (aside from myself) everyone in my department (staff, faculty, grad student) was crushed that John Kerry lost. In any case, last night a few of my friends who I was watching the game with were complaining every time a vaguely patriotic image came on the screen. One ridiculed the reading of the Declaration of Independence (which I had missed), then continued during Alicia Keyes, and then the National Anthem. When the Anheuser-Busch commercial came one, they just shook their heads and exclaimed that they wanted to move out of the country.

"They were truly disgusted by the displays of love for America, feeling that it was nothing more than militaristic/jingoistic/nationalistic/neo-fascistic pap. These are the next generation of professors, teachers, and text-book writers by the way..."

Well, I'm not an academic. Nor did I attend college. I'm just a blue collar scribbler who loves sports, and I thought many of the game's displays, along with much of the pre-game pro-war banter, were indeed "nothing more than militaristic/jingoistic/nationalistic/neo-fascistic pap." Why deny it? That's what the Super Bowl is during wartime -- a six-hour commercial for American imperial might with no dissenting views expressed. I know that those who read and write for the Nat Rev feel that "love for America" exists strictly on their extreme nationalistic terms, which, I'd think, would justify the feelings of those tortured libs who watched the game with the emailer quoted above (and what was this person doing in such an "anti-American" setting? Couldn't he/she find some war whoopers to share pretzels with?). But they should happily embrace the obvious. Those who put on the show certainly did.

As for the game, close but clunky, and the Pats were never in any real danger of losing. They're not as flashy as Montana & Rice's 49ers or Aikman & Irvin's Cowboys, but they are in the same league. The Eagles simply didn't take advantage of the early openings that the Pats gave them. But Philly will be back, esp in a mediocre NFC.

And how about that Paul McCartney holographic/automaton half-time mini-concert? Looked almost like the real thing.