I went through a phase of reading as much satire / parody as Sunny Bookshop in Singapore could offer. Robert Rodi was a particular favourite, but I also enjoyed Christopher Buckley’s Thank You For Smoking, which was adapted into a film starring Aaron Eckhart (also fun). So, when I spotted a cheap copy of Supreme Courtship by that same author when on our trip to Canada last year, I knew I had to have it.
Written in more recent times, it strikes me that this satire is probably pretty damn true to life. The President (in this case too noble, good, and pragmatic to be real) has had two Supreme Court justices rejected for ridiculous reasons, and decides to put up a nationally-revered TV judge up for the nomination, counting on her popularity to stifle any less-than-honourable attempts to dismiss her. I wouldn’t say that hilarity results, but what does happen is so ludicrous it must be true.
Buckley is more about writing stories that make you smile and raise your eyebrows, not laugh maniacally. I also must confess that I did snort quite a bit. Anyone who follows modern politics will know what I mean.
(Incidentally, did everyone catch the documentary about the birth of modern politics — it was all down to JFK — presented by Andrew Marr? It was very good.)
Satire is such a brilliant form of telling some home truths. Anyone who says Americans have no appreciation of irony is wrong; with authors like Buckley around, irony is truly dead. Long live irony.