If the aftermath of the writers' strike has left you jonesing for that season of 24 you missed, head over to Draft Bloomberg. The latest addition to their web site is a slickly produced youtube video which borrows the show's graphic tics, starting off with a ticking countdown on that fuzzy red clock, with a bomb blast thrown in for good measure. Time is running out, you see --- Mike Bloomberg has only ten days or so to decide whether he's entering the presidential race, and if we don't get down on our knees right now and lick his ... petition, he might not come and save us.
Mind you, the thing does flag in production values toward the middle. The folks who were hired to read lines like "Will we have a President who owes nothing to the lobbyists and special interests?" can't seem to muster any real conviction. And it's hard to blame them --- as a billionaire mogul from the news biz, Bloomberg owes nothing to the special interests because he is one himself. (By the by, isn't a career in one industry a bit too limited to let him claim mastery, on that basis alone, of the economy as a whole? But wait, it isn't him making that claim. It's an entirely separate organization which is seeking to influence him, but which has gotten the money to produce its slick videos and publicity from magical elves.)
It's easy to dismiss this page-15 political news as comic relief to the horror shows that are continually playing on page one. (We have a torture debate. We are debating the merit of torture. And whether the President should be able to give vast and powerful companies a secret free license to break the law.) But before you do, watch that video again, and notice how Bloomberg is being pitched as an alternative to "the bickering in Washington". Bickering is the lifeblood of democracy. What Bloomberg's team is saying in this video (or, if you like, his unaffiliated magical elves) is that they stand for something else.