Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Breaking Bad Worth Conservative Viewers

Conservative radio talk show hosts have been raving about the Fox TV show
each year, seizing on the show's sometimes politically incorrect depiction of Muslim terrorists and interrogation tactics of the series' anti-hero Jack Bauer.

It's a sign of the times and woefully sad that across the wide TV entertainment landscape the only show that conservatives can identify with is one that otherwise alludes to shadowy conspiracy groups as attacking the administration of its first African-American president, David Palmer, and then this season's female president Allison Taylor. And those shadowy conspiracy groups are always residing within the government, in one form or another, or they insinuate that mercenary groups (Starkwood/Blackwater) are seeking overthrow because the Administration isn't tending to the nation's national security.

Of course, those are the hobgoblins of leftists' marijuana-riddled brains, but there's such a dearth of TV choice that conservatives gather like moths on a pinprick of light that emanates from the rugged individualist that is Jack Bauer.

So, when a show like "Breaking Bad" comes along, conservatives should take notice. It has turned out to be much more consistent with conservative views on issues than I would have thought at the outset.

The second season ended Sunday with a two-plane collision crash occurring above the New Mexico town where the show is set. The planes crashed as a result of a grieved father's failing at his work as a air traffic controller shortly after his 27-year-old daughter dies of an overdose of heroin. The young woman need not have died. The high school chemistry teacher who has broken bad, to raise money for his family by making and selling crystal methamphetamines after being diagnosed with cancer, watched and did nothing as the young woman asphyxiates on her own vomit in a drug induced stupor. It was as cold blooded of a scene as anything I've ever seen on TV, to watch a man protect his drug dealing identity by letting this woman die.

On a broader level, the plane crash and the spread of its debris over the New Mexico town demonstrates the death and destruction that's occurred as the result of one person deciding to go bad, to make drugs, to kill people. It's the ripple effect, in high definition on AMC.

What makes the show remarkable is its depiction of the descent of evil around a man who has deviated from an honorable life as a high school chemistry teacher earning $40,000 a year because of his diagnosis of having lung cancer.

The teacher feels he has to enter the criminal world of making and selling drugs to leave his pregnant wife, partially paralyzed son, and future daughter with the money he hasn't made honestly.

On its face, the typical leftist TV producer/director would use that as a justification to show that the man is justified in his devolution into a murdering scumbag drug maker and dealer. You hear it all the time from the left, that if you had to steal to support your family you would do it too, you know you would. They use that rationalization to support their favorite criminals, whatever death row offense they've committed. And of course the President has indicated his desire for the national drug control policy maker to focus on expanding treatment options, not interdiction.

A criminal criminal defense attorney, effective DEA agent and dipstick junkie partner all make for interesting character subplots in a dark but good show that more closely aligns to a conservative world view than would liberal contortions on the same subject matter.

If you get a chance, get the first two seasons of Breaking Bad on DVD and make yourself ready for next year's season. The show is a eye-opening depiction of the drug underworld that's probably more prevalent than we want to admit and will offer insights into the depravity of the drug gang world we are trying to fight (but apparently not much longer with the help of the Obama administration).

P.S. - Today's Austin American-Statesman story about the beating and kidnapping of a young Austin man by drugheads shows the real life effects of drugs in this city. It's Breaking Bad, in real life.

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