The red carpet campaign

Don’t get me wrong: I like celebrities.  Not as much as I like shrimp po’boys, or a good dog, but still…
 
I have spent time in the company of many actors,  singers, dancers, magicians, jugglers, famous chefs, and infamous sports figures.  Most have been pleasant.  Some have been very nice.  A few have been world class jerks.  Never, however, have I walked away thinking, “Wow, if only this person could help run the country, we’d all be better off!”  
 
And yet, the White House, through both Democratic and Republican years, has hosted more famous friends than Wolfgang Puck.  It’s like dinner with Larry King every night over there; uh…without Larry.  This week Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt – in town to screen Jolie’s new movie about Bosnian war crimes –stopped by to grab a grilled cheese with the president.  I have met both halves of Brangelina and have no bone to pick with either.  They were polite, well versed in their causes (she more than he, to be honest), and they didn’t put their feet on the furniture.    
 
Still, it baffles me why the White House seems to always have a guest room ready for such rich and famous folks, while you and I couldn’t get in for a glass of water if we were on fire.  Sure, celebs talk about serious issues.  But don’t you have some ideas you’d like to chat over in the Oval Office?  (I mean other than having your brother-in-law deported.) And can you imagine any president saying, “Oh no!  We’re on the brink of a global conflagration.  Quick, get me Reese Witherspoon!”
 
As this election year rolls on, however, we can all expect to see many more celebs hanging out in politically high places; offering often unqualified opinions, endorsing candidates, and enjoying the kind of access to power that you and I will never, ever enjoy.  Come to think of it, I know exactly why it happens: Because celebs bring fame, social contacts, and money to political players.  That’s all it is.  
 
Still, it seems a bit disingenuous for Washington types to constantly rant, rave, and stamp their feet over the undue influence of the rich and powerful, while simultaneously swinging the door open wide over and over again to welcome the rich and powerful, while famously telling the rest of us to keep our feet off the red carpet…and wait outside.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
News

Rock legend Neil Young files for divorce after…

The legendary Canadian rocker Neil Young has filed for divorce from his wife of 36 years.

Local

FDNY debuts new fire simulator for blazes at…

The New York City Fire Department christened its newest, state-of-the-art, custom-built simulator at its training academy on Randall's Island Tuesday.

Local

Brewer celebrates Women's Equality Day with voter pledge

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer celebrated Women’s Equality Day Tuesday by pledging to register at least five women voters before the Oct. 10 deadline. Brewer…

Local

NYPD looking for lewd D train rider

The NYPD is enlisting the public’s help to find a man they say performed a lewd act on the D train Saturday evening. The incident…

Television

Adrien Brody shows off his lock picking in…

Adrien Brody talks about his role in the History channel's new "Houdini" miniseries.

Movies

Review: 'The Last of Robin Hood' is a…

Dakota Fanning plays Errol Flynn's (Kevin Kline) teenage gal pal in "The Last of Robin Hood," which takes a scandal and makes it dully empathetic.

Movies

Review: The uneven 'Life of Crime' mostly gets…

Elmore Leonard's "The Switch" becomes the new indie crime dramedy "Life of Crime," with Jennifer Aniston as a kidnapped woman whose husband won't pay up.

Movies

Review: Pierce Brosnan gets a cut-rate Bond knockoff…

Pierce Brosnan tries to reclaim his glory days with the spy thriller "The November Man" but instead gets a sad DTV-style ripoff with lame action.

College

When are 2014 college football playoffs? (Schedule, date,…

When and where are 2014 college football playoffs? A look at the schedule, date, TV, time for the semi-finals at championship game.

NFL

Dimitri Patterson suspended only for rest of preseason…

Dimitri Patterson ended up getting just a slap on the wrist.

Sports

Eugenie Bouchard excited for 'rowdy' fans at US…

Eugenie Bouchard is sure to endear herself to New York's tennis faithful as she tries to win her first grand slam title across the next two weeks.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: Angels and A's still at…

MLB Power Rankings: Angels and A's still at top, Nationals climb

Career

Stop eating lunch at your desk

What are you doing for lunch today? If you are like most workers, you'll be eating at your desk - which isn't much of a…

Parenting

Lure your baby to sleep with Maroon 5…

These new renditions of "Moves Like Jagger" and "Payphone" are Maroon 5 like you've never heard them before.

Wellbeing

Who is having the most orgasms?

  Single lesbians report having orgasms more often than heterosexual women but both gay and straight men still come out on top of the climax…

Home

Jonathan Adler shares his tips for a great…

Jonathan Adler took a break from boogie boarding at his beach house to tell us how to keep that Labor Day party festive.