I have a few theories about the popularity of American idol. One of them is that people took pleasure in Cowell`s brutal honesty. For all the complaints about the shrillness of our political discourse, we actually live in pretty dishonest times. We can`t tell the truth about race. We can`t say why we really don`t like massive Third-World immigration. Our foreign wars are in a big measure reflective of Jewish interests, but few dare say so.
Cowell was refreshing. He sliced through the glop with a laser tongue. He was in another universe from the ditzy, cheerleading Paula Abdul. He didn`t sugarcoat his comments with the "hey dogs" of Randy Jackson, who rarely gave targeted, intelligent criticisms ("I don`t know, dog, it was just ah-aight for me.")
I think deep down, people get tired of the "everybody`s a winner, everyone is special" pablum of the PC Age. Raw, biting truth has become a kind of spectacle — a preserve of freaks.
American politics could use a Simon Cowell, but would he ever get elected to anything? It`s one thing to slice up an obviously bad singer, but it`s quite another to tell a whole country it`s going to get its clock cleaned by China if it doesn`t stop importing Latin America, spending money it doesn`t have and outsourcing the manufacture of things like manhole covers to India.