We are the 99%

May 17, 2009

Jack Kelly Sunday

This week's column, Jack takes on the recent Washington Press Corps Dinner.

Newsflash: Jack Kelly thinks the Washington Press Corps is in the tank for President Obama!

Only his "proof" is far from convincing.

And oddly enough he spends almost half of the column on Meghan McCain - even though she's not in the tank for Obama and not a member of the Washington Press Corps - as "evidence."

Huh?

He describes Ms McCain with this:
[T]he not-especially-bright daughter of Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.
And with this rhetorical question:
Why would a woman of no discernible accomplishment think other people ought to know who she is, or care?
And fulfilling the comedy rule-of-three, finally with this:
Mostly, of course, because Meghan is a spoiled brat. Her father became a hero because he believed in service to his country. She thinks that for no other reason than that she is a blood relation she ought to be served.
Funny, 8 years ago a lot of people were saying the same thing about the Torturer President.

But back to McCain. She's gotten into trouble with the Republicans true believers for writing things like this:
[C]ertain individuals continue to perpetuate negative stereotypes about Republicans. Especially Republican women. Who do I feel is the biggest culprit? Ann Coulter. I straight up don’t understand this woman or her popularity. I find her offensive, radical, insulting, and confusing all at the same time.
Though I find this odd because Jack also has had issues with Coulter:
But the dyspeptic denizens of the Right believe in addition by subtraction. To make the GOP stronger, moderates must be calumnized and driven from it. Polemicist Ann Coulter is so angry with Mr. McCain's occasional embrace of Democratic ideas that she says she'll campaign for Democrats if Mr. McCain wins the nomination.

Ms. Coulter says this sort of thing whenever she feels she's not getting enough attention. Her position is extreme, even among the extremists.
I wonder if Jack still thinks McCain is "not especially bright" now?

With little or no rhetorical segue, Jack suddenly starts in on Wanda Sykes and her performace at the White House Correspondents' Dinner:
The entertainment at the dinner was provided chiefly by Wanda Sykes, a "comedian." Her routine, and the audience's response to it, says much about Washington's glitterati.

Typically at these dinners, the incumbent president is lampooned. But Ms. Sykes directed her fire at conservatives. Radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh is a "traitor." He would have been the 20th hijacker on 9/11, but was too strung out on Oxycontin to make the flight. She hoped Mr. Limbaugh would die of kidney failure.

Note the ironic quotations marks. Subtle. Before we let Jack get all PC on Sykes' jokes (if Jack were writing that it would have read: Sykes' "jokes"), let's take a look at Eric Boehlert over at Mediamatters.org. Boehlert finds similar angst with James Taranto of the Wall Street Journal. Taranto wrote:
Why do liberals find this joke funny when they should find it embarrassing? The answer, it seems clear, is that this is an example of shock humor: a genre that relies on the frisson of violating taboos. By our count, Sykes runs afoul of five taboos in her Limbaugh joke: She equates dissent with treason. She likens a domestic political opponent to a foreign enemy. She makes fun of the disabled (Limbaugh's past addiction to painkillers would entitle him to protection under the Americans With Disabilities Act). She makes light of a form of interrogation that some people consider torture. And she wishes somebody dead.
Which Boehlert deconstructs:
The comedy gold, of course, is that Taranto unwittingly describes, point-for-point, the Rush Limbaugh show as its been heard for nearly two decades. But over that 20 years time, how many times has Taranto taken to the Op-ed town hall to tsk-tsk Limbaugh's brand of hateful humor? This is just a guess, but I'm guessing it's a bullseye: ZERO.

When Limbaugh or the GOP Noise Machine equates dissent with treason, likens political opponents to a foreign arm, mocks the disabled (paging Michael J. Fox), makes fun of interrogation and wishes somebody dead, it's funny and insightful. But when a liberal comedian does it, guess what? It's the end of the world as we know it.

And what of Ms McCain? She also didn't reportedly like Sykes. From the same Daily News article Jack quotes:
“Sen. McCain gave you grief about the new helicopters you didn’t order,” said Sykes, adding, “I think Mr. McCain was a little bitter because he wanted to be in the new helicopters. Mr. McCain, I’m sure if you ask nicely, your wife will buy you a new helicopter.”

While the assembled crowd of politicos, journalists and celebrities roared with laughter, Meghan was not among them.

“I didn’t like the joke about my mom [Cindy],” the young McCain told us after the dinner. “Why talk about her at all? I (didn’t mind the jokes) about my dad, but leave my mom out of it. It really wasn’t in good taste.”

Yah, Jack left that part out.

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