Suddenly we’re television hostages to TWO delusional crackpots: Moamaar Gaddafi and Charlie Sheen. The former, a spoiled, tyrannical dictator, has the fate of millions in his hands, and the outcome will affect us all. The other guy is just a spoiled, tyrannical actor, whose only direct victims are his kids. Both are claiming air time with weird tirades against the notion they should be denied…anything! Clearly, neither are familiar with the word “No”.
Fortunately, CBS has given a severance cushion to the laid-off employees of Sheen’s TV show—never a job guaranteed for life. But the people of Libya are literally fighting for their future. All in all, an interesting study in contrasts. Gaddafi is the product of everything that’s been wrong with our geo-political alignments for forty years. It’s almost awe-inspiring to realize that watching his fall—and our waking up—is to witness global history in the making.
Sheen represents something a lot closer to home: our fascination with celebrity; and the fantasy of “freedom” money can buy: babes, drugs and the kind of arrested development we might have dreamed of as teenagers, but grew out of when we realized we had to paddle our own canoe. Yet this guy is 50, with five kids! He’s got two porn stars as live-in “goddesses”, and never needs to worry about money for the rest of his (possibly short) life…not unlike Gaddafi, now that I think about it. And they’re both crying victim….go figure.
One hopes that Sheen, unlike the Libyan, still has time to wise up—meaning grow up. Meanwhile, I have to confess that the television spectacle of these dueling train wrecks is just too much history-in-the-making to turn off. Call me shallow.