Are American politics worse than they are on 'Game of Thrones'? | The Tylt
U.S. politics seem to get crazier every week. People joke that we're becoming Westeros, the setting of the famously brutal medieval drama "Game Of Thrones," where ruling families jockey for control (Clintons versus Trumps!) and filial connections grant you immense power (i.e., Jared Kushner, son-in-law and Secretary of Everything). Julia Shaw says "Americans ought to watch ‘Game of Thrones’ with keen attention to how regimes decline." Is America devolving into Westeros? ⚔️ 🛡️ ⚔️
Are American politics worse than they are on 'Game of Thrones'?
"Game of Thrones creator George R.R. Martin says America now has its very own mad boy king.
Hellbent Podcast host Sarah Lerner agrees that President Trump has some disturbing Joffrey Baratheon tendencies—and she's not alone in calling Trump our new Boy King. The Revelist published a piece entitled "Nine Ways Donald Trump and Joffrey Baratheon Are Basically The Same Person."
Can you imagine sadistic Joffrey with the nuclear codes? 😱
Yes, American politics have gone off the rails a bit lately, but let's have some perspective. The losers in our elections are not publicly beheaded at the behest of psycho teenage sovereigns (at least not yet). 🇺🇸
But there are some eerie parallels of late. The Red Wedding was one of the darkest, most shocking and tragic twists in television history—as BuzzFeed said, "It destroyed us all... and we may never recover." No one was prepared for it. People were sobbing and hysterical. It made no sense. And podcast host Roderick Morrow says Clinton's defeat on November 9, 2016, was a Red Wedding for people on the left.
Mashable made a series of Westeros political ads that are pure gold. 👑
But let's not get overdramatic. America has way more rule of law than Westeros does. Washington might be corrupt, but it's got nothing on King's Landing.
I'd fucking kms if I lived in westeros. This is Fucking awful— NuMetal Papi (@JawnValjawn) May 31, 2016
For the most part, you can survive in America without being able to kill someone with your bare hands. Not so in Westeros!
Looking forward to my best friend's wedding today. Also very glad I don't live in Westeros, because then it would be a much scarier affair.— Alex Mowrey (@ajm315) June 21, 2014
All joking aside, Julia Snow argues the disturbing decline of American political norms is actually reflected in "Game of Thrones," and "while we don’t live there, we should recognize that we very well could."
The Red Wedding transgressed civilized norms of hospitality. Walder Frey welcomed the Starks into his home as allies and guests only to execute them (let’s not forget Frey’s own indifference to the murder of his young wife). Members of the Night’s Watch violated their oath by murdering Jon Snow, their brother and Lord Commander. No oath, no custom, and no family bond is sacred in a decaying political order.
But come on now, everything is horrible in Westeros. Even Foreign Affairs magazine conceded that "life in Westeros is poor, nasty, brutish and short." And Robert Repino points out while America has its problems, we do not live in medieval times.
Why is Westeros so hopelessly fucked up in the first place? Westeros (and its neighboring countries and islands) remains permanently stuck in a simulacrum of medieval Eurasia. Most of its residents survive within an agrarian economy, with simple farmers segregated from the elites by their poverty, illiteracy, and a total lack of any say in how their government operates.
Addiction, disease, poverty, the threat of war—these are all very real problems in America. But it's not like there's a horde of ice zombies descending upon us from Canada! 😱
Oh, God. George R.R. Martin concedes the White Walkers and the reigning families' denial of their existence is an analog for climate change.
We are totally screwed ❄️⚔️💀⚔️❄️