The long wait is over, and President Obama can start packing his bags. Clint Eastwood has endorsed Governor Romney, and that, as they say, is that.
Since the 2012 Superbowl, there had been speculation that the actor famous for playing Dirty Harry and The Man With No Name might actually come out for Obama. In the famous Chrysler ad, Eastwood had read the lines, “This country can’t be knocked out with one punch. We get right back up again, and when we do the world’s gonna hear the roar of our engines.”
At the time, some pundits interpreted the commercial as an endorsement of the Obama administration's policies, which included a bail-out of America's automobile companies. But Eastwood, an actor who has played against an Orangutan in two celebrated films, has ended the speculation. Addressing the crowd at a Romney fund-raiser, Eastwood--the actor who promoted family values by playing a vice cop addicted to sex--eloquently proclaimed, according to a report on the BBC, "the country needs a boost somewhere."
Eastwood recalled that he had first become aware of the candidate when he was shooting a movie in Massachusetts. "God, this guy," he thought to himself, "he's too handsome to be governor. But it does look like he could be President."
Out of the horse's mouth!
A notorious womanizer, according to his biographer Patrick McGilligan, Eastwood is said to have fathered seven children by five separate women. He had a fourteen year "relationship" with the insufferable Sondra Locke and apparently bought a house for her allegedly homosexual husband. Locke claims she had two abortions during this time, both at Eastwood's request.
Yes, in the new America, abortion, adultery, and homosexuality are all legal, but what a mess he has made of his life! In a long life I have known a lot of strange degenerates, but Eastwood, even by Hollywood standards, is in a class by himself And what was the response of the upright Mormon to Eastwood's endorsement?
"He just made my day. What a guy."
It is a little unfair to pick on Romney for accepting the support of one of Hollywood's few Republicans. (Interestingly, some of the others are also action heroes: Bruce Willis, Arnold Scharzenneger, Chuck Norris.) Most of the big Hollywood money is, after all, backing Obama, even in spite of their doubts about his loyalty to Israel.
Still, it's a quaint world, when powerful men turn for support to people who pretend to be the men they are not. Actresses who play farmwives testify in Congress on the farm crisis, and Robert "I'm not a doctor but I play one on TV" Young made commencement addresses at med schools. There was a time when actors were not respectable people, much less heroes whose every word was reported in the press.
Are Obama and Romney sincere in their protestations of affection and respect for the Hollywood riffraff who raise money for them? I don't know. The question itself is absurd. There is nothing serious or sincere about American politicians. Small wonder that actors have been elected governor and even in one memorable instance President.
From time to time, the American press is abuzz with the rumor that Robert Redford or Warren Beatty is about to run for office. Why not? Why not cut out all the amateur actors who do such a poor job of playing politicians on television and hire a real actor for a change. Let me be the first to say it:
"In 2016, vote for Charlie Sheen."
Thomas Fleming is the former editor of Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture. He is the author of The Politics of Human Nature, Montenegro: The Divided Land, and The Morality of Everyday Life, named Editors' Choice in philosophy by Booklist in 2005. He is the coauthor of The Conservative Movement and the editor of Immigration and the American Identity. He holds a Ph.D. in classics from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Before joining the Rockford Institute, he taught classics at the University of Miami of Ohio, served as an advisor to the U.S. Department of Education, and was headmaster at the Archibald Rutledge Academy. He has been published in, among others, The Spectator (London), Independent on Sunday (London), Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, USA Today, Chicago Sun-Times, National Review, Classical Journal, Telos, and Modern Age. He and his wife, Gail, have four children and four grandchildren.