Perhaps the only thing I love about the fact Crash won Best Picture is that it now affords us the not-so-rare chance to see the cultural classes trudge into the familiar 'circular firing squad' formation they snap into so reflexively just before cutting each other to ribbons. Depending on who you talk to, Brokeback Mountain didn't win because the Academy is a bunch of homophobes. Or, Crash won because the Academy wanted to pay attention to a film that talked about the real problems of racism as opposed to the boutique, bourgeois concern of homosexual civil rights. (Which, to digress, is why right-wing cultural commentators have it so easy: Because their potential opposition is busy fighting each other to death instead of closing ranks and challenging the dimwit, hateful, leaden screeches of well-funded idiots like Ann Coulter.)

Or, it was because Crash had showy parts for actors, who comprise the biggest part of the Academy's voting blocks, and it was set and made in L.A., and that put it over the top. Or over-hype for Brokeback poisoned the film's own chances. Or Lionsgate pulled a Miramax and, by spending $4 million dollars to send DVDs out to SAG and Academy voters, threw the vote by wielding the money stick and appealing to convenience-minded Academy voters, who could watch Crash at home without slumming among, you know, moviegoers – even as poor Jake Gyllenhaal was forced to mouth Oscar-night platitudes about how You gots to go see movies in the theater, folks! The truth may not be out there, but the weary conspiracy theories are.

So, progressively-minded culture watchers face off like the Jets and Sharks, accusing each other of ignoring homophobia or ignoring racism. Which is hi-larious to me; when asked by a friend for a quick take on Best Picture, I offered that "Well, I guess the Academy chose to honor a film that's not really about racism over a film that's not really about gay rights. ..."