Smackdown

I’m hard-pressed to find a more engrossing and accurate metaphor for the current state of play between Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama than the World Wrestling Entertainment spoof wrestling match between the two Senators that’s been making the rounds on YouTube for the last couple of days.

Performers dressed as the two contendors for the Democratic nomination — Obama embellished with a pair of large protruding ears and Clinton with a puffy wig — duke it out in the ring in front of cheering crowds. Bill Clinton is on hand to give his wife support, which seems a little unfair to Obama who has no second and must face his opponent alone.

At the end of the short fight, neither Senator has won. Instead, an archetypal, spandex-short-wearing wrestler — huge, tattooed, and oiled — stomps into the ring and destroys the two politicians.

The champion wrestler isn’t outfitted with John McCain’s weak chin. That would be going too far. But you don’t need the man to look like the Republican Presidential nominee to read between the lines and see what will happen to the Democratic cause if Obama and Clinton continue to spat.

The clip is pure theatre. Wrestling is the most theatrical of all sports and the WWE fight between Clinton and Obama only serves to make its links with politics even more explicit.

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