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Gaffes on Film: Mike Gravel 

Even if you don't care about Alaska, direct election, or Citizen Power, you should like Democratic candidate Mike Gravel. Why? Because he's an artist of the highest order.

Gravel's campaign video is quite possibly the most mesmerizing, most accomplished bit of filmmaking to come out of the American political system in the last 30 years. No uplifting U2 songs here, no clips of Gravel kissing  babies and old women, no voice-over touting his merits. This is just the man, standing in front of a lake, stoically staring into the camera for one minute and 25 seconds before walking to the shore and throwing a rock into the water. He then walks into the distance for a minute and a half. And through it all, the camera never moves.

How should we read this? Is the placid lake a symbol of American political complacency, the rock a pun on Gravel's name and an emblem of his catalytic effect? If so, what do we make of the epic walk down the lake? Is it a four-year term?

Scratch your head:

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January 13, 2020

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