'How Arnold won the West' is a hilarious political satire on the most bizarre American election to date. In true Hollywood-style and after much media speculation, Arnold Schwarzenegger announced his candidacy for Governor of California on The Jay Leno Show in August 2003. The world was watching. But as Schwarzenegger hit the campaign trail, were we just witnessing the cult of celebrity?
In "How Arnold Won The West", Schwartzeneger plays his greatest role of
all time, taking on the leading role in the Republican party's attempt
to steal the position of Governor in the US's 5th largest economy. They
evoke a 100 year old law, which they utilize to call for a recall, in
an attempt to overthrow Governor Gray Davis in an orchestrated coup
d'etat; damning him for creating a massive deficit for the state of
They begin by showing Arnold's(well the Republican's anyway) approach
toward this feeble attempt to steal a victory away from the Democrats.
It shows how Arnold would ONLY speak to a crowd in public settings, and
every time he gave a speech, it was a carbon copy of the last. He
promised to balance the budget, while not raising taxes and also to
improve things like the school system and the environment. He claims he
will achieve all these goals by stopping spending!! He also repeatedly
says that the American people will see through the attempt, by every
single other candidate to stop the recall, for what it really is.
Cooke then points out how the Recall was being single handedly funded
by a Republican Congressman who had made millions from selling
auto-theft devices. She points out how it is yet another ploy by
Republicans to steal an election they could not win, as they did to
Clinton, Gore, and also in Texas and Colarado. The film shows how the
Californian people saw through this ploy and decided to take action,
making this the biggest mockery US politics has ever seen. Candidates
for governor ranged from porn stars, to guys promoting their beer, and
even Gary Coleman!! In a hilarious montage of interviews, Cooke shows
who Arnold is getting his support base from, and how the rest of
Californians decided to turn the election into a circus in order to
show the world how absurd this initiative really was.
Cooke then shows how Arnold and the Republicans filibustered the media,
denying them ALL one on one access to Arnold. They put him in a
position where he never once had to discuss the issues by taking
questions from journalists, and when he did, he just avoided answering
them, instead cracking jokes or changing the subject. One reporter
points out how the Republicans, cleverly, used the media by taking all
the limelight, but not letting them carry out their actual function.
This shows how, despite taking a number of personal attacks, Arnold was
able to come out on top and win the west.
This film points out, in an entertaining and informative fashion, how
the Repulicans were able to buy themselves a new election and
successfully turn it into a popularity contest. They chose the most
known candidate, with convenient political ties to the Kennedy's.
Despite the majority of Calfornia's attempts to stop the recall, the
republicans were able to come out on top and achieve victory. This has
stripped the state of California's political integrity, and should be
seen as the biggest mockery of democracy in the history of the US.
(at the end Cooke points out that attempts are already being made to
change the Constitution to allow landed American's like Arnold to run
for President...how far will the republicans go?...how far will the
American people and the world let them??)
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