Quick: What is the most too-cute grating indie celebrity thing disguised as political activism venture you can imagine this election season? Michelle Williams farming in Ethiopia and blogging, on a website created by Dave Eggers, about how you should vote for Barack Obama because of diversity? Close! It’s actually Jesse Eisenberg staying in a yurt in Mongolia and blogging, on a website created by Dave Eggers, about how you should vote for Barack Obama because he “understands the world writ large.”
We like Jesse Eisenberg’s movies well enough, and he seems like a smart, polite young man, but he needs to be mocked for this. It it his contribution to a Dave Eggers project, “90 Days, 90 Reasons,” wherein twee celebrities like Eisenberg and Death Cab for Cutie’s Ben Gibbard (who was even married to the ultimate twee celebrity, Zooey Deschanel) offer vague feel-good reasons for supporting the president’s reelection. Here is Eisenberg’s essay!
I’m traveling through Mongolia and currently staying in a yurt. This was not by choice; I’m with persuasive friends. If it were up to me I’d never leave my apartment and, more specifically, the bedroom area. But my comforts have given me a nagging sense of discomfort. I think traveling and seeing how other people live, even if I’m not totally immersing myself, assuages some of my unease because it re-sensitizes me to the difficulties and existential inconveniences that most other people face. In this way, I think Barack Obama is a good leader for our diverse country because he’s seen how the world lives. It doesn’t take a lot to realize that seeing the world forces you to interact with it in a different way and I know that I feel more comfortable being represented by someone who’s seen it.
It’s troubling when you sorta-kinda agree (relative to the other candidate, at least) but still want to vomit everywhere. And if you’re going to go with the “Barack Obama understands the people of the world” angle — which wasn’t even that persuasive in 2008 — at least address how you’ve come to terms with him constantly killing people in like seven countries with flying robots and so forth.
Is this a joke from the GOP?