Celebrating Compromise

Crapgame:  Then make a DEAL!
Big Joe:  What kind of deal?
Crapgame:  A DEAL, deal! Maybe the guy’s a Republican. “Business is business,” right?   [Famous scene from 1970 movie Kelly’s Heroes]

Invictus is a decent movie – at 80 years old Clint Eastwood is still in top form.  More interesting is that Invictus, like Kelly’s Heroes, is a rare movie celebrating compromise, the key virtue of “dealism,” or economic efficiency.

The movie shows Nelson Mandela, new black leader of previously white-run South Africa, trying to unite suspicious whites with blacks eager for revenge.  Of course Mandela achieves this not by touting the advantages of peace and prosperity, but via pride in beating a common enemy: the South African rugby team wins the world cup.  The title of the movie comes from a poem that inspired Mandella in prison, a poem all about defiance, self-respect, and not a whiff of compromise.

All of which shows just how hard it is to inspire passion for compromise; sadly, no one goes to the barricades for efficiency.  The best this movie can offer is that peace and compromise can help you crush your enemies into smoldering ruins.  Whee.

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