Stephen King, in one of his books on the field of horror fiction, was asked about the political import of all the 50’s movies that featured scary monsters created from radioactive fallout. King’s response was that there was no politics at all. Spooky radioactive stuff was simply part of the public consciousness, a throw-away, and the question was simply whether the monster should be a sea creature or an insect or a giant lizard.
Today, if you look at popular movies for the past 40 years, there is a constant theme that if you know evil government secrets, the government will kill you. If you expose a secret military operation, the military will kill you. If you can reveal corporate wrong-doing, the corporations will kill you. If you know of illegal police operations, the police will kill you. Government officials, corporate officials, military officials, are all routinely portrayed as ruthless seekers of profit and power who will stop at nothing to achieve their ends.
Jaws. A local government leaves people exposed to a giant ravenous shark rather than hurt the local tourist business. This was a shock? Did people react to Jaws with, “No, we can’t imagine them doing something like that”? No. Of course not. The exciting part was whether the heroes could kill the shark before it ate them.
Now there’s this oil leak
The left leaps into action. The oil companies are evil. The government is corrupt. Obama is a tool of BP. So fucking what?