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February 17, 2013

Big, new Kevin Spacey film exposes The Lobby

M. J. Rosenberg

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It is big. It stars Kevin Spacey who also directed it. Additionally, it is the first film produced by Netflix, which is itself a huge deal, and is available instantly at its site for free streaming.

Here is the amazing part. I don’t think I’m revealing any spoilers because this is only a small part of the plot but, if you are sensitive about such things, stop reading.

So…Kevin Spacey plays the Democratic whip of the House of Representatives. A new president has just been elected, who has promised to appoint Spacey’s character Secretary of State. However, he reneges and gives the job to someone else. The guy who gets the job is fine, even from Spacey’s viewpoint, but Spacey is mad and has to block him to hurt the president.

But the guy is clean. What to do?

Spacey’s staffer comes up with a Williams College editorial on Israel, published when the Secretary of State nominee was editor-in-chief of the college paper. The editorial calls the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza illegal.

Spacey figures that should be enough to destroy the would-be secretary’s chances EXCEPT it turns out that he did not write the editorial, another student did. Spacey dispatches a corrupt, drug addicted Congressman (really) to visit the guy who wrote the article and convince him to say that it was, in fact, the Secretary of State nominee who was responsible.

The guy doesn’t want to do it. He says that, even as a student, the Secretary-designate was a total wuss who would never take any controversial stands.

So the doped up Congressman bribes him with pot and cocaine and, voila, he changes his mind. He will go public with the fact that it was the Secretary guy who opposed the occupation.

Spacey gives the story to the Washington Post and then the Secretary nominee is confronted by the real George Stephanopoulos on his Sunday show who nails him for having criticized Israel 30 years ago! The addled nominee laughs!

And Spacey calls the head of the Anti-Defamation League (not played by the real Abe Foxman) who denounces the Secretary-to-be as an anti-Semite (in part for laughing at the charge of disrespecting Israel). He is forced to withdraw. All the forces of corruption win!

Exaggerated? Nope, as the Hagel assault demonstrates.

This is how the lobby operates.

Kevin Spacey, bless you.

Hey, lobby, lots of luck bringing Spacey or Netflix to their knees!

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