All is Vanity....

James M. McKain
Vanity Fair recently brought out its Hollywood issue for 2007. Among the many articles is one about the famous 1957 film A Face in the Crowd. One of Elia Kazan's greatest films, it deals with the swift rise and swifter decline in the public eye of one Larry "Lonesome" Rhodes, played by Andy Griffith. 

This film has been hailed as a cautionary tale of the susceptibility of the American public to demagoguery, and how public relations, slick packaging, shadowy cabals using appealing frontmen to advance their views, and the media all help to pull the wool over our eyes, if we're not careful. True to form for Vanity Fair, it seconds that motion, and the article mentions that there are similarities in the film's message to the careers of Joseph McCarthy, George W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, and John McCain (!). Even George Allen is referenced, with the writer calling Rhodes' climactic fall from grace a "macaca moment".

In the film, the Rhodes character is a petty grifter from small-town Arkansas, who is discovered by chance one day, when a television producer passes through his town. He becomes a TV personality, moves to the big city, and soon wins over the entire country with nothing more than a gift of gab, a charming smile, and a carefully coiffed hairstyle.

Underneath the thin veneer of smarmy, phony charm, however, he is revealed to actually be a cold-eyed, amoral sociopath; a priapic bully with a taste for jailbait girls, whose only genuine interest in other people lies in using them in his quest for power, or to help gratify his desires.


Based on the above description, what modern American political figure does that remind you most of? Hint: Vanity Fair does not mention him in the article - not once.

Vanity Fair recently brought out its Hollywood issue for 2007. Among the many articles is one about the famous 1957 film A Face in the Crowd. One of Elia Kazan's greatest films, it deals with the swift rise and swifter decline in the public eye of one Larry "Lonesome" Rhodes, played by Andy Griffith. 

This film has been hailed as a cautionary tale of the susceptibility of the American public to demagoguery, and how public relations, slick packaging, shadowy cabals using appealing frontmen to advance their views, and the media all help to pull the wool over our eyes, if we're not careful. True to form for Vanity Fair, it seconds that motion, and the article mentions that there are similarities in the film's message to the careers of Joseph McCarthy, George W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, and John McCain (!). Even George Allen is referenced, with the writer calling Rhodes' climactic fall from grace a "macaca moment".

In the film, the Rhodes character is a petty grifter from small-town Arkansas, who is discovered by chance one day, when a television producer passes through his town. He becomes a TV personality, moves to the big city, and soon wins over the entire country with nothing more than a gift of gab, a charming smile, and a carefully coiffed hairstyle.

Underneath the thin veneer of smarmy, phony charm, however, he is revealed to actually be a cold-eyed, amoral sociopath; a priapic bully with a taste for jailbait girls, whose only genuine interest in other people lies in using them in his quest for power, or to help gratify his desires.


Based on the above description, what modern American political figure does that remind you most of? Hint: Vanity Fair does not mention him in the article - not once.