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Richard Cohen knows nothing. Others, too.

funny, history, incompetence

This caught my eye:

School yearbook lists Bush, Cheney among the worst people ever
By Stephen C. Webster | June 3 2011

Officials at a middle school in Arkansas are investigating how a list of the worst people of all time came to be published in their recently-released yearbook.

They’re investigating namely because former President George W. Bush and former Vice President Dick Cheney were included on the list.

They placed fourth and fifth, respectively, right after Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, terrorist figurehead Osama bin Laden and Charles Manson.

Reminds me of the time the venerated historians at Right Wing News polled their fellow intellectuals to determine who were the Worst Americans Evah. The second most vile, most disgusting American in all of history turned out to be President Obama. Jimmy Carter came in at Number One. Missing from the list: Lee Harvey Oswald, James Earl Ray, Ted Bundy, and pretty much every other bad person you could think of.

The razor-sharp historians were exposed to much heat and laughter, so they changed the post. Then they deleted it. Boo hoo. It’s a difficult thing, coming to terms with your entertaining lameosity.

But that’s not always the case: for WaPo’s Richard Cohen, it was a piece of cake. That’s probably why he bragged about it. Alex Pareene’s got an hilarious post on Cohen in Slate. Poor Richard knows he no longer knows anything about, well, anything.

Cohen says he now lives in a strange and bewildering place called “Xanadu” where he no longer understands anything. Like, what is Twitter, and why do people “follow” members of Congress on it?

“I have seen this Weiner. He is a homely fellow, certainly not handsome and not what you would call a hunk. Yet this college student all the way on the other side of America follows him on Twitter? Why? What does it mean to follow someone on Twitter? Xanaduns (Xanadunians?) apparently do it, but I don’t know why.”


But this is perhaps the truest paragraph Richard Cohen has written in many years:

“I don’t remember moving here, a country where I have never been before and where I know nobody. I don’t even know why I think I am in Xanadu, except that the name just came to me. It seems to make sense, which is more than I can say for anything else. I used to understand everything. I was even paid to explain things. Now I understand nothing. I live in a strange place and understand just a piece of what’s going on. At the moment, I am hungry and going across the plaza to that cute outdoor café. I think I’ll have a Kardashian.”

Have you ever seen anyone so fully embrace his reputation? Good for you, Richard. Now send me your paycheck.

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Dying journalism: Time conducts an e-mail interview with “Sarah Palin,” concocts a cover feature

2012 campaign, damn twitter, I'm not a strong swimmer, media, palin ha-ha

Thought I was done for the day, then this caught my eye. There went my jaw:

Time conducts cover story Sarah Palin “interview” over e-mail
The newsweekly has her on the cover, but has no way of knowing whether she actually answered their questions
By Alex Pareene | FRIDAY, DEC 10, 2010 |

. . Exclusive! Palin sits down with Time for an interview! An e-mail interview, I mean. Which is generally how you get a quick statement, not how you put together a cover story. (Even when you’re writing about a real celebrity, from movies and stuff, you are generally expected to, at the very least, hear their voice at the other end of a phone.)

A Sarah Palin cover interview by e-mail? Don’t they know she pays someone to compose her Facebook posts? If Miss Wasilla could abort the embarrassing English language, she would. She’s got others potshotting behind her digital wall because she can’t handle a gun in public.

Time Magazine likely knows but doesn’t care. So they could be pathetic, but they’re more likely conspiring with a politician to bullshit the whole nation. They’re not just apple polishing — they’re Palin polishing. Those are today’s Walter Cronkites for you.

How is anyone supposed to know who’s holding up “Sarah’s” end of the interview? No one can. But we can try: we might be able to rule out Palin. Here are some bits of Sarah Palin anti-matter emanating from a Facebook page allegedly her own:

Twenty years ago, the ultimate symbol of the division between freedom and tyranny was torn down. The Berlin Wall was constructed for one purpose: to prevent the escape of East Germans to the freedom of the West. The Wall’s cold, gray façade was a stark reminder of the economic and political way of life across the Soviet Union’s sphere of influence in Eastern Europe.

And now, the spontaneous flesh-and-blood Palin on Twitter:

Facebook again, on the Fed’s ‘Quantitative Easing’:

. . the same cannot be said of his claim that the Fed’s experiment in pump priming would automatically lead to increased economic growth. By the time this experiment is over, QE will make us queasy.

Will driving the dollar down in this way do anything to boost U.S. exports? The short answer is not really. A weaker dollar will temporarily boost exports by making our goods cheaper to sell; but inevitably other countries will respond in kind, triggering the kind of currency wars economists are warning us about. It’s precisely to prevent this scenario that World Bank President Robert Zoellick recently came out in favor of some new type of gold standard or “international reference point.”

And then Twitter:

Not much comparison. So what was the “Sarah Palin” interview with Time like? Here are a couple of “her” e-mails they built into the big interview:

And Palin, naturally, wisely and consistently, is coy about the answer. “I would run because the country is more important than my ease, though I’m not necessarily living a life of ease . . ”

Obamacare’s repeal, she adds, “would help to cut future deficits. It would also send a strong signal to America’s workers and employers that government is back on their side and is no longer seeking to impose its one-size-fits-all ‘solutions’ from above.” Palin says she would “also look for entitlement reform, as well as a systemwide audit of government spending with a goal to move us toward zero-based budgeting practices and, ultimately, a balanced budget.”

“My positions are not at all controversial. The majority of Americans agree with me across the board on the issues. I think it’s a personal thing that probably stems from media demonization of me and mischaracterization of what I stand for . . “

If that’s Sarah Palin, it’s only with plenty of help. No, neither Time nor Conservatives need be concerned. But when the current President stands in front of thousands of people and reads his own words off a teleprompter, he’s some sort of joke.

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