Saturday, January 13, 2007

"Don't Blame Me-I Voted For Kodos"

Good news. One of the best Simpson-episodes "Citizen Kang" is now available on youtube. This episode was broadcast just before the American presidential election in 1996 starring Bill Clinton and Bob Dole as the two main candidates, and is memorable both because it is funny and satirizes a common fallacy about elections.

In the episode, Homer is abducted by two aliens, Kang and his sister Kodos. His initial reaction is the heroic line "Oh my god, space aliens, don't eat me! I have a wife and kids-eat them!"

When it is clear that they don't want to eat either Homer or his wife and kids, he says "Well, I suppose you want to probe me. Well, we might as well get it over with" and pulls his pants down and moons them. Whereupon Kang and Kodos with obvious disgust says "Stop! We've reached the limits of what recto-probing can teach us." This refers to the stories of some people who claim that they've been abducted by space aliens that the aliens shuvved an anal probe up their butts.

After they've explained that they're on a mission of conquest, they ask for the human leader, whereupon Homer explains that after next week's election, it might be either Bill Clinton or Bob Dole. So Kang and Kodos proceed by first abducting Bob Dole, who reacts by saying "What? Uhh, Bob Dole doesn't need this!" (an obvious reference to his frequent tendency to refer to himself in the third person), and then abduct Bill Clinton, who reacts by saying "What's happening? Is it noon already?". Kang and Kodos then proceed by undressing Dole and Clinton and perform bio-duplication, i.e. transform themselves into looking like Dole and Clinton.

Homer reacts to this by saying: "aliens, bio-duplication, nude conspiracies! Oh my god, Lyndon LaRouche was right!", in a great satire of the nutty conspiracy nature of Lyndon LaRouche and his followers.

After this "Bill Clinton(Kodos)" and "Bob Dole(Kang)" began talking and acting very strange. With "Bill Clinton" saying "I am Klin-ton! As overlord, all will kneel trembling before me and obey my brutal commands! End communication"[Crossing his arms], and with "Bob Dole" answering the question "Senator Dole, why should people vote for you instead of Senator Clinton?" by saying "It makes no difference which one of us you vote for, either way your planet is doomed! DOOMED!!!".

Later when "Bill Clinton" and "Bob Dole" are seen walking along the street holding each other's hands, a Clinton campaign worker tells "Bill Clinton": "Uhh, Mr. President, sir. People are getting a bit confused about the way you and your opponent are, well, constantly holding hands". Whereupon "Bob Dole" answers: "We're merely exchanging long protein strings! If you can think of a simpler way, I'd like to hear it!".

Later, when Homer finally exposes the fact that "Bill Clinton" and "Bob Dole" are exposed as being Kodos and Kang, they say: "It's true, we are aliens, but what are you going to do about it? It's a two party system. You'll have to vote for one of us!". Whereupon a man in the audience says: "I believe I'll vote for a third party candidate!", to which Kodos mockingly replies "Go ahead, throw your vote away!" , with Kang and Kodos laughing and Ross Perot seen destroying his own "Perot 96" hat in frustration.

Then we see Kang's inauguration day as president, where one alien exclaims "All hail, President Kang!", and then images of the alien flag and humans enslaved by aliens to build a ray gun aimed at some unknown planet that presumably is home to a species that are enemies to Kodos' and Kang's species. Marge, who like other humans including Homer is in chains asks "I don't understand why we have to build a ray gun aimed at a planet I've never even heard of?", whereupon Homer remarks "Don't blame me, I voted for Kodos!". As if Kodos wouldn't do the exakt same things as president as Kang.

This is a great satire of the tendency all too many Americans (and others) to vote for some of the established parties, rather than some "third parties" (i.e. parties not considered to have a chance of winning) , even though these "third parties" better reflect their views.


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