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Opinion >  Syndicated columns

Kathleen Parker: Political grind turns tawdry

Kathleen Parker Orlando Sentinal

If our enemies don’t hate us, it’s an oversight.

The confluence of the worst of modern American trends – national narcissism, the sexualization of all things animate and otherwise, and the devaluing of currencies from literature to public discourse – has reached a perfect storm of idiocy in the form of MTV-style political videos.

Can the culture possibly go any lower before the barbarians simply waltz through America’s front door, left lazily ajar by the last one to shake her booty?

The videos are the latest rage in virtual politics: Pouty girls in scant clad bump ‘n’ grind their luv for this presidential candidate or that.

For which they are rewarded millions of views on YouTube, the favorite medium of narcissists gone wild, and recognition by the alleged mainstream media. For just a few humps and bumps, fame belongs to the teeniest bikiniest.

The first of the new genre of videommentary – a new silly word for a new silly breed – was titled “I Got A Crush on Obama” and received 2.4 million views on YouTube. Waaaaay too much attention for other aspiring famesters to suffer unnoticed.

Next came “Obama Girl vs. Giuliani Girl,” in which the already famous Obama gal and a Giuliani fanette conduct a political debate song. Not to be outdone, a 21-year-old from Hollywood next created a “girl crush” video about Hillary – “Hott4Hill.”

The Hott star appears as an elementary schoolteacher, playing on the seducer-teacher theme once popular in fantasy, now luridly displayed in headlines. The kiddies sing along, learning up close how to make it in today’s world. In pornified America, every little girl learns early how to move those hips, how to plump those lips.

“I have a crush on a girl named Hill,” the teacher sings. Other lyrics include: “Hillary, I think I want you. Hillary, I think I need you.” And she even loves the shape of Hillary’s derriere, she croons.

All the videos are low-budget flicks allegedly made for fun and parody. All are choreographed in the style of MTV, lots of flash and flesh set to pop music against a backdrop of Americana.

The “Hott4Hill” video star, whose name I’m trying not to learn, claims on her Web site that she’s just kidding. She’s not a lesbian, she’s not political. She’s just a girl lookin’ to have some fun.

She’s also a former “American Idol” contestant who did not miscalculate the value such a video would bring her way.

Once discovered on YouTube, of course, it’s a short shimmy to the news shows, where producers are so bereft of actual news – or so convinced that bumper sticker America can’t concentrate long without a sex infusion – that a hottie helps fill the gaps left vacant by retired generals lulled to sleep by the sound of their own voices.

On her Web site, Hillary’s girl breathlessly blogs that between appearances on “Hardball” with Chris Matthews and various other shows, she’s hardly had time to keep up with her mail and other career demands.

Matthews even announced a contest for similar video wannabes.

Politics. What a grind.

What to make of all this? The videos are apparently popular and add a dimension of shtick for voters already weary of the campaign that began two years too soon. Phenomena that attract the attention of millions can’t reasonably be ignored by the larger media. Or can they?

As these new forms of communication continue to emerge, we will continue to be deluged by every hot new thing. But some of us miss every old thing – the quieter lessons of adults delivered without a rhythmic thump, and a moment or two free of libidinous tease.

The attention-seeking, self-important desperation that drives today’s virtual world is boundless and, apparently, boundary-less. What’s next?

Photoshopped porn flicks featuring, well, take your pick?

I hate to be the one to break the news, but every person in the universe has a tush. There are only so many ways to display it. Yours is not that interesting. But tell that to the producers who can’t resist booking the latest tushette.

Deep-thinking pundits are wondering whether these videos help or hurt the candidates they purport to support. Some commentators eager to play up the lesbian angle from the Hillary tape have posited a gay-play theory in hopes of hurting the former first lady.

Here’s the truth: The girly tapes of the 2008 election make Hillary Clinton look like Margaret Thatcher, reminding all that America has never been more in need of grown-up women in high places.

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