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Stephen Colbert roasts - Page 2

post #16 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by odoreater
Seems like the man with the biggest sense of humor in the entire place, other than Colbert himself, was Justice Scalia.

That's because he love it, the life!

Jon.
post #17 of 40
If the smartest man in the room thinks you're funny... are you funny?
post #18 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Margaret
If the smartest man in the room thinks you're funny... are you funny?

I'll bite, who was the smartest man in that room?

Jon.
post #19 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by imageWIS
I'll bite, who was the smartest man in that room?

Jon.

Scalia?

He probably qualifies 99.9% of the time. Even his detractors generally agree with that.
post #20 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by iammatt
Scalia?

He probably qualifies 99.9% of the time. Even his detractors generally agree with that.

Damn, and I was going to say Bush...

Jon.
post #21 of 40
I really disagree with a lot of Justice Scalia's legal opinions, but I think that the man is brilliant and I am a great admirer of his.
post #22 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by odoreater
I really disagree with a lot of Justice Scalia's legal opinions, but I think that the man is brilliant and I am a great admirer of his.

Agreed. I completely disagree with 99% of what he writes and decides (though to his defense he's pretty good when it comes to 4th Amendment issues), but from his writing it is clear that he is both brilliant and in posession of a sharp wit that most of the other Justices lack. For the wit alone, I've always enjoyed reading opinions, even ones I disagree with, authored by Scalia.
post #23 of 40
Richard Cohen is right on the money:

Quote:
So Not Funny

By Richard Cohen
Thursday, May 4, 2006; A25

First, let me state my credentials: I am a funny guy. This is well known in certain circles, which is why, even back in elementary school, I was sometimes asked by the teacher to "say something funny" -- as if the deed could be done on demand. This, anyway, is my standing for stating that Stephen Colbert was not funny at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner. All the rest is commentary.

The commentary, though, is also what I do, and it will make the point that Colbert was not just a failure as a comedian but rude. Rude is not the same as brash. It is not the same as brassy. It is not the same as gutsy or thinking outside the box. Rudeness means taking advantage of the other person's sense of decorum or tradition or civility that keeps that other person from striking back or, worse, rising in a huff and leaving. The other night, that person was George W. Bush.

Colbert made jokes about Bush's approval rating, which hovers in the middle 30s. He made jokes about Bush's intelligence, mockingly comparing it to his own. "We're not some brainiacs on nerd patrol," he said. Boy, that's funny.

Colbert took a swipe at Bush's Iraq policy, at domestic eavesdropping, and he took a shot at the news corps for purportedly being nothing more than stenographers recording what the Bush White House said. He referred to the recent staff changes at the White House, chiding the media for supposedly repeating the cliche "rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic" when he would have put it differently: "This administration is not sinking. This administration is soaring. If anything, they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg." A mixed metaphor, and lame as can be.

Why are you wasting my time with Colbert, I hear you ask. Because he is representative of what too often passes for political courage, not to mention wit, in this country. His defenders -- and they are all over the blogosphere -- will tell you he spoke truth to power. This is a tired phrase, as we all know, but when it was fresh and meaningful it suggested repercussions, consequences -- maybe even death in some countries. When you spoke truth to power you took the distinct chance that power would smite you, toss you into a dungeon or -- if you're at work -- take away your office.

But in this country, anyone can insult the president of the United States. Colbert just did it, and he will not suffer any consequence at all. He knew that going in. He also knew that Bush would have to sit there and pretend to laugh at Colbert's lame and insulting jokes. Bush himself plays off his reputation as a dunce and his penchant for mangling English. Self-mockery can be funny. Mockery that is insulting is not. The sort of stuff that would get you punched in a bar can be said on a dais with impunity. This is why Colbert was more than rude. He was a bully.

I am not a member of the White House Correspondents' Association, and I have not attended its dinner in years (I watched this year's on C-SPAN). The gala is an essentially harmless event that requires the presence of one man, the president. If presidents started not to show up, the organization would have to transform itself into a burial association. But presidents come and suffer through a ritual that most of them find mildly painful, not to mention boring. Whatever the case, they are guests. They don't have to be there -- and if I were Bush, next year I would not. Spring is a marvelous time to be at Camp David.

On television, Colbert is often funny. But on his own show he appeals to a self-selected audience that reminds him often of his greatness. In Washington he was playing to a different crowd, and he failed dismally in the funny person's most solemn obligation: to use absurdity or contrast or hyperbole to elucidate -- to make people see things a little bit differently. He had a chance to tell the president and much of important (and self-important) Washington things it would have been good for them to hear. But he was, like much of the blogosphere itself, telling like-minded people what they already know and alienating all the others. In this sense, he was a man for our times.

He also wasn't funny.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...302202_pf.html
post #24 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by dah328
Richard Cohen is right on the money: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...302202_pf.html
Wow, those arguments are soaring; soaring just like the Hindenburg… He was funny, and he has brass balls, which is more than what I can say about most journalists. Who, criticize Colbert, but not the administration...Wow, that’s ballsy. Oh, and Colbert is the bully? Not Bush, with his ‘collation of the willing’ and his ‘you’re either with us or against us’ rhetoric? No, it’s Colbert that is the bully. What a bunch of nonsense. Jon.
post #25 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by iammatt
Scalia?

He probably qualifies 99.9% of the time. Even his detractors generally agree with that.


Scalia, much like myself, is always the smartest man in the room as we both went to Xavier HS in NYC
post #26 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by dah328
Richard Cohen is right on the money:



http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...302202_pf.html

Those that can do, those that can't, criticize those that do
Sounds like Mr. Cohen is suffering either from jealousy or sour grapes.
post #27 of 40
clearly, 'funny' is a value-laden term. and, politics is personal and cultural. just to be clear - what the commentators (including us and the blogosphere) are doing now is trying to steer the cultural rudder by emphasizing or de-emphasizing the different qualities of his speech. i think colbert makes a pretty good court jester.
post #28 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by edmorel
Those that can do, those that can't, criticize those that do
Sounds like Mr. Cohen is suffering either from jealousy or sour grapes.

Exactly.

Jon.
post #29 of 40
Thread Starter 
This mentality is exactly what Chomsky wrote about in Manufacturing Consent. Most mainstream journalists just have too much at stake and have not enough balls to step up to the administration. By writing the piece, it's apparent that Mr. Cohen, and perhaps the rest of these politically correct journalists, think that most of Americans can't think for themselves. Do we need instructions from this guy on what is appropriate at this event, even though the man himself hasn't never been there? How long has it been since anyone had the balls to criticize Bush in his face? Perhaps Mr. Cohen is trying to score some points so that he's on the good side of the White House. Whatever his motive was for writing the piece, I could care less. I watched, I cringed, I laughed, then I applauded.
post #30 of 40
I thought Colbert was both hilarious and wholy correct in his statements. I'm a much bigger fan of his now than before seeing his performance at the event. In my mind, this was quite similar to Jon Stewart's appearance on Crossfire, which I also greatly enjoyed. It was funny, which was great, but was also a very on-the-mark critique of the administration that I thought brought up some great points and provided for some good internet discussion.
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