Friday, May 19, 2006

In which the Meridian shares a pretty good parody with his vast readership

Your correspondent loves good parodies--as, I would hope, is true of all lovers of language and literature. He appreciates them so much because, though he's tried his hand at it in the past, he doesn't feel that he's written a truly good one. It is a sad thing when people take them too seriously, because those who do just end up looking more ridiculous than the parody makes appear the person/reputation allegedly in need of protection. And speaking of protection, maybe the case he linked to above will be the last one we need to affirm that parodies are consitutionally-protected speech. And the people said? "Settled law!"

Usually, parodies poke loving fun at their targets' weaknesses. Sometimes, though, their sole purpose is to skewer the target till it squeals like a stuck pig or someone howls with laughter.

So: I present to you an original ad that's been the subject of much recent comment in the blogs I read, and a pretty good parody (hat-tip: Kevin Drum) of that ad.

Is that squealing and/or howling I hear? I hope so, 'cuz, like, some rich people spent a whole lot of money to make an ad that, like, really blows (pun intended in retrospect).


fearful_syzygy said...

Good God, that is truly sickening (the original, I mean).

I just don't get it. We need carbon dioxide to live, yeah sure. But we also need, like, the Earth, no? I keep getting this image of Wyle E. Coyote out on a limb with a hacksaw; except it's not that funny.

Incidentally there's a good article on global warming in the latest issue of n+1. Only the little snippet there is available online, but I'll type up one of the paragraphs towards the end:

"The most powerful and cogent critique that can currently be leveled against our mode of capitalism is that markets fail to account for ecological costs. In a crowded world of finite size, our political economy values only acceleration and expansion. Scarce natural resources like clean air and water, not to mention more complex systems like rainforests and coral reefs, are either held at nothing or seriously undervalued. Corporations could clear-cut all our forests, reduce croplands to swirling dust, turn rivers to conveyors of toxic sludge, deplete supplies of minerals and metals, double and redouble carbon emissions — and all our economic indicators would show nothing but robust growth until the very moment the pyramid scheme collapsed. Indeed, most of these things are happening, with only scattered opposition. When our math improves, when the costs of our products fully reflect the resources used and the wastes produced — especially CO₂: then and only then can capitalism begin to become a viable and humane economic system."

poco said...

I am laughing so hard I'm crying. Talk about spin doctoring. I really needed that fantastic take on my industry. I would've thought the CO2 commercial was also a can't be real.'s been a very long day.
I recently worked on something promoting nuclear power, it was very similar. And scary in light of the National Geo article that was just published on Chernobyl.