Plans for a “reality” television show called “The Real Beverly Hillbillies” has enflamed passions among some southerners, who sense Hollywood is out to mock them and their kind. I’m not sure what Hollywood is up to, save for trying to make some easy money the typical Hollywood way: ladling out some more dreck.
As a confirmed hick, however, it’s my belief that being insulted by Hollywood is another case of being called ugly by a toad, and a stupid toad at that. One recalls those stories a few years back about Ivy Leaguers opting out of law school and heading to Hollywood to write the next generation of television shows and movies. You can’t help but smirk. We all recycle, but to have to fall back on the Hillbillies for inspiration is truly pathetic. Fox television, not to be outdone in the numskull competition, subsequently announced it would base a new “reality” show on “Green Acres,” which is the Hillbillies in reverse.
The most interesting aspect of the Hillbillies drama, at least for some of us, is who CBS will choose to play the starring role. “The network is looking for a rural, lower-middle class family to move to a Beverly Hills mansion,” said one story; another explained that the “mountainous” regions of several states, including Arkansas, are being combed for the starring family. This of course brings to mind one prominent hick family: That of W.J. Clinton, who was not long ago sniffing around for job in the entertainment industry. The other night he said he’s considering other options but that’s probably because the right opportunity hadn’t arisen. This one would be perfect for him, and might actually serve a high public purpose.
It would be perfect for Bill, of course, because it would put him before the cameras, which would certify his existence. It would also provide him a free place to live, which is a somewhat habitual concern with his clan. The public would be served, or might be served, if the Clintons were actually transformed by the experience. For let us admit: The Clintons have lived the supersized version of the American Dream, to no apparent avail. They’ve had maids, butlers, drivers, mansions, and even their own jetliner. But all of this was never able to vanquish their Inner Rube. Perhaps one more time through the golden gauntlet will do the trick.
There is no doubt the Clintons have had all the advantages of wealth, though not of the self-earned type, which differentiates them from Jed Clampett, who became rich after an unexpected oil strike. Not the Bill has complained. Once ensconced in public housing he could order a Big Mac and ten would appear. He could order a pizza and one would also arrive, borne by the world’s most famous Intern, who also provided dessert. Yee-hi, Bill observed.
Hillary, meanwhile, could order clothes cut so fine that her billowing glutei seemed to disappear. She handed a single grand to a courtier and watched it turn into real money. Her servants baked her cookies, raised her child, and clocked the comings and goings of her itinerant husband. The Clintons didn’t pay rent, mow the yard, sweep the carpet, or change the oil. They had it all.
But they seemed to get trashier as time passed. They never really left Dogpatch. Indeed, linking them to Dogpatch defames that fabled place. Most trailer parks and dark hollows have covenants to keep out people like the Clintons.
Despite all their blessings, neither lost a highly developed talent for lying, though maybe talent isn’t the right word. Love may be more accurate — true love. They lied to grand juries, friends, cabinet members, and indeed the whole wide world and heaven besides. They stiffed their lawyers. They “lost” subpoenaed documents. They cried fake tears, bit lips that trembled on cue, and when in real trouble convened clergy.
They spoke of adopting orphans and were surrounded by fine furnishings, which Hillary reportedly hurled at Bill. They could treat the help like dirt — firing cooks, ransacking the travel office, and berating aides for petty infractions. We never saw them kick the dog but who would put it past them. While we all mourn Buddy’s death, those who suggest it may have been a suicide cannot be dismissed out of hand.
Then there were the final days in office. Much of that time was spent selling pardons to crooks, cronies, and other sleazes. They had lived at the nation’s premier address for eight years, and on the way out sacked the joint. They would have taken the linoleum off the kitchen floor if Hillary could have found a pry bar.
So it’s clear enough that this couple has, as of yet, been untouched by the blessings of wealth, status, and opportunity. That is hardly an advertisement for the American Dream. Quite the contrary. It makes a mockery of it.
Maybe one more gilding will do the trick. Or, perhaps not. But there would be some amusement in watching Bill pluck chickens around the cement pond with a few assorted bimbos while Hillary thrashes the help. It’s also likely they’d invite the other “reality” couple over for dinner. We assume Ozzy would open the invitation, roll his eyes, and say “I’m not breaking bread with that ****ing yob.” That would be worth watching.