If you haven't seen the cult classic 'Being There', from 1979, you really should. Starring Peter Sellers as Chance the gardener, a simple-minded man who lives an entirely sheltered life on a rich man's estate, the movie (and book) chronicle what happens when Chance, whose only contact with the outside world has been television, is catapulted into the Greater World. Misunderstandings cause Chance of no surname to become Chauncey Gardiner, and his simple-minded gardening aphorisms are taken for Zen koan-style wisdom by the glitterati and he's soon being acclaimed a sage.
Watch this movie, and then picture how it would have turned out if, instead of sweet gentle Chance, the Powers That Be had chosen to elevate a frog-exploding, undergraduate-branding, execution-gloating, business-wrecking sociopath. Yes, then you'd have "America, 2001-2004". Sigh.
I include a link to the orignal novel by Jerry Kosinski as well.