IN THE RECENT CINEMATIC SPECTACULAR AVATAR, directed by James Cameron, creator of Titanic, a paraplegic Marine, Jake Sully, is dispatched to Pandora, a moon of the planet Polyphemus, some 4.3 light years from Earth, that is inhabited by gentle, innocent natives who call themselves the Na’vi. Substituting for his deceased brother, Jake is an unwitting foot soldier in the service of a creepy military-industrial company (read: Halliburton) seeking to strip mine Pandora’s pristine woodland paradise for its rich deposits of the mineral unobtanium (really), which can save Earth from its energy crisis. The conceit of this extraordinary computer-generated graphics confection is the Avatar Program, a biotech-on-steroids program that enables people to link with their own avatar, a genetically bred human Na’vi hybrid. Through his avatar body, Jake is able to walk again, permitting him to romp with the noble nine-foot-tall Na’vi, who are, of course, innocent of knowledge of the value of the coveted ore, much less the profit motive driving the evil mining corporation and its thuggish mercenaries (read: Blackwater).
The plot line, a comic book of progressive left politics, captures the Zeitgeist perfectly—business bashing and nature worship. As our lead feature in this issue, “Bull’s eye!”, suggests, business leaders have come to feel that the Obama Administration has painted a target on their backs. America may be the land of entrepreneurs, but it’s China and India who have liberated their enterprise creators while ours are increasingly wrapped in regulatory chains and await water boarding by healthcare “reform” and cap-and-trade legislation.
Who us, anti business? Obama will have none of it. Last July he told Business Week, “My sense is this has more to do with people buying into stereotypes or expectations about Democratic presidents than it has to do with specific initiatives that we’ve been putting forward.”More recently, in December he held a jobs summit in which most of the invited representatives were from academia, labor and government. There were a few members from the private sector where jobs are actually created, but his remark that “a few people like you can come up with some additional good ideas on how-to create jobs” revealed a lack of understanding that jobs actually come from economic activity, i.e., from business and commerce. By contrast, NAFTA supporter and Glass-Steag all killer Bill Clinton appears in hindsight to have been a president of Fried manite conviction.
Calling upon the brightest minds in biotech, we propose a crash program to create an avatar for Barack Obama a genetically modified character allowing the President to assume the form, breathe the air and walk among the natives just as Jake Sully does, but in this case in the exotic land of the profit seekers and enterprise builders those who seek to satisfy customers every day while dealing with government regulations and litigious predators, and yet somehow meet a weekly payroll. One would hardly expect that the former community organizer and Harvard-trained lawyer will, like Jake, go native, but he may at least avoid the trap familiar to his political class of professing to be pro job while despising the job creator.