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April 30, 2006 12:05 AM   Subscribe

Steven Colbert (TruthyMan!) headlines the White House Correspondents Dinner -- and Bush is not amused. Will there be fallout? C-Span focused on Bush expression (lack of) during the slamming ... (link to story with video).
posted by Surfurrus (384 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
How weird is it that I Tivo'd something on C-SPAN?
posted by SkinnerSan at 12:16 AM on April 30, 2006


[This is awesome.]
posted by jmhodges at 12:23 AM on April 30, 2006


Damn. That was harsh. Colbert is awesome.
posted by chunking express at 12:26 AM on April 30, 2006


The "Gannon" button in the interview tape made me snot out my nose.
posted by Popular Ethics at 12:27 AM on April 30, 2006


Colbert is like unto a god to me. He flubs his lines with clockwork regularity, but that just makes me like him more.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:28 AM on April 30, 2006


The C&L video is incomplete -- for the full show, try http://www.mininova.org/tor/296239.
posted by nmiell at 12:29 AM on April 30, 2006


Colbert is awesome. I'm surprised he got away with that. Don't they have people read the scripts beforehand?

The part where he pretends to be the President's press secretary was bogus, though.
posted by Afroblanco at 12:32 AM on April 30, 2006


The lack of response at the beginning of the video is stunning. How the hell did he get on there in the first place?
posted by jmhodges at 12:35 AM on April 30, 2006


That dinner was so weird. Bush's act was "I am a dumb idiot" however he was so dumb that he had to hire a professional comedian to help him with it. (sorta like Bush can only testify to the 911 commission if Cheney is there to hold his hand).

Then Colbert gets up and states or alludes to all sorts of things that Bush's handler bubble has been protecting him from.

I'm sure Bush is furious and I wonder if a White House maid will sell out to the National Enquirer and reveal stains in his underpants.
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 12:35 AM on April 30, 2006


Brilliant.
posted by jefbla at 12:38 AM on April 30, 2006


nmiel -- I don't have 'torrent-ability' but you are right, the 'crooks and liars' video is incomplete. Skinnersan's idea is best -- Tivo CSpan -- When I saw this on CSpan this evening (it is repeating in the morning) the camera view of Bush's face was boxed in the corner of the screen while Colbert talked!
posted by Surfurrus at 12:43 AM on April 30, 2006


That takes major intestinal fortitude. Props to Colbert, it's just a shame that the most outspoken against this administration have to be comedians.
posted by banished at 12:45 AM on April 30, 2006


When is this being re-broadcast on CSPAN? I just updated my TIVO schedule, and I'm not seeing it in the next 24 hours...
posted by Dunwitty at 12:48 AM on April 30, 2006


05:30 AM EST (that is in an hour and a half) according to their schedule
posted by jmhodges at 12:54 AM on April 30, 2006


C-SPAN 05:30 AM EDT 1:00 (est.)
White House Correspondents Dinner

My guide only shows a 5 hour block of "Public Affairs", so I've set up a manual recording.
posted by omarr at 12:55 AM on April 30, 2006


I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things, like aircraft carriers, rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong mesasge that no matter what happens to America she will always rebound with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world!
posted by pruner at 12:59 AM on April 30, 2006


One more thing ... I predict this is going to be another demonstration of the huge gap between internet voices and the media. So far all the media reports on this are 'canned' stories (AP) with identical quips about Bush and his hired double. None of them bothered to watch it themselves? What about the reporters who were there? Are they going to just pretend it (Colbert as raptor) didn't happen?
posted by Surfurrus at 1:00 AM on April 30, 2006


god bless TiVo.
posted by scody at 1:00 AM on April 30, 2006


This administration is not sinking! This administration is soaring! If anything, they're rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenberg!

I've had a man-crush on Colbert since well before he got his on show. However, this only reaffirms why I would bear that man's children, were I so equipped.
posted by sparkletone at 1:02 AM on April 30, 2006


Damn, that dude got balls..
posted by c13 at 1:05 AM on April 30, 2006


Wouldn't it be nice if Colbert's performance did for the administration what Jon Stewart's appearance did for Crossfire? Man, I would've loved to have been a fly on the wall in W's limo ride home.
posted by blueberry at 1:13 AM on April 30, 2006


Fox News presents both sides of every issue: the President's side and the Vice-President's side.

He started off strong, but the filim clip was tedious and unfunny.
posted by three blind mice at 1:15 AM on April 30, 2006


Man, I would've loved to have been a fly on the wall in W's limo ride home.

Well someone has to explain the jokes to him.
posted by three blind mice at 1:17 AM on April 30, 2006


Awesome.
posted by juv3nal at 1:18 AM on April 30, 2006


Balls of solid titanium. Damn.

This (like so many other moments) would be a terrible blow to the Admin if the press would actually carry it like they should... but they won't. It'll only reaffirm what those who pay attention in spite of the media already know about the emperor and his lack of clothes.

What I like the most is that he not only hit the Admin with both barrells, but essentially pulled out a second gun and gave two more barrells to the press.

This man's a hero.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 1:19 AM on April 30, 2006


I just noticed
this link on Wikipedia. (DivX / 640x480 / 26:35 / 200mb)

It's Colbert's full appearance and the video quality is a million times better than the video linked from the URL in the main post here.
posted by omarr at 1:33 AM on April 30, 2006


mayor nagen, id like to welcome to you to washington dc, the chocolate city with a marshmallow center...
this is one of the best routines ive ever seen.
posted by phaedon at 1:39 AM on April 30, 2006


Have to say I found the routine trite and geeky. He is the kind of guy you laugh at, not with.
posted by zaebiz at 1:52 AM on April 30, 2006


I watched it and was rather disgusted.

It wasnt really funny it was more pathetic. As a liberal I feel it did much much more harm then good.

Moronic infact.
posted by Addiction at 1:58 AM on April 30, 2006


hmmm maybe bush wasnt laughing because the guy's timing is all over the place , misses loads of beats , hasnt rehearsed his lines properly , drifts in and out of character etc etc.....shame , could have been a killer blow as well , very good material , i'm guessing he introduced it at a late stage in the game using the press secretary skit as cover, but one must simply be on top of ones lines darling......
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:01 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm sure you could do much better as evinced by the scathingly detailed critique you've just given us.
posted by IronLizard at 2:01 AM on April 30, 2006


(Not you sgt.)
posted by IronLizard at 2:02 AM on April 30, 2006


...aaaaand the Unwinnable War Of What's Funny And What's Not begins.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:03 AM on April 30, 2006


Funny? Who cares? It's one of the most direct attacks on Bush I've seen yet, since our citizen speaker guy (his name and the link elude me at the moment) gave him a dressing down.
posted by IronLizard at 2:05 AM on April 30, 2006


Is no one going to comment on a Doobie Brother in a kilt being at the dinner? Now that is comedy gold.
posted by vagabond at 2:15 AM on April 30, 2006


Heh heh lizard ..... i'm just a wee luvvie who likes to see people take wings and soar once the lead boots are removed...... it's for sure he was switching his material at the last minute though , the amount of times he looks at the script.....Is there a link to bushs doppelganger skit ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:17 AM on April 30, 2006


I watched it and was rather disgusted.

Yeah, the part when he shit into his own cupped hands, sniffed deeply and vomitted onto it, then, screeching like an albino ape, rubbed the mess into Bush's face until the blood came and the resultant filthy matter dripped down into the president's water glass, from which, before he was dragged away and pistol-whipped by the SS, Colbert drank greedily while shouting "I am the living god! I am the alpha and the omega!" -- that was a bit disgusting.

Still, fine and pointed political commentary.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:20 AM on April 30, 2006


Heh heh lizard ..... i'm just a wee luvvie who likes to see people take wings and soar once the lead boots are removed......
My fault, I didn't preview sgt, that's why I added the comment jusy below, I was referring to the previous two posters.
It absolutely looked like he switched, hell he was looking so hard at the script I wouldn't be surprised if he wrote it on a napkin just beforehand.
posted by IronLizard at 2:23 AM on April 30, 2006


man, that was actually quite painful... lotta silence on that tape. Still, awesome that all that was said within 10 feet of the president.
posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 2:29 AM on April 30, 2006


reality has a well-known liberal bias

Awesome. I guess Larry the Cable Guy wasn't available to make yuck-yucks about gays and ragheads.

Stephen's the man.
posted by bardic at 2:32 AM on April 30, 2006


(And IMO the awkward silences make the performance--he knew it would go down like this. Very Andy Kaufman.)
posted by bardic at 2:33 AM on April 30, 2006


More than Andy Kaufman. It's Kaufman with a purpose. Kaufman was more than willing to have his jokes slid right off his audience because much of his work was for his (and Zmuda's) enjoyment. Colbert knew that much of it would flop, but wanted it to flop and stick. And stick, it will, IMHO. People can't ignore the fact that a comedian went on for over 12 minutes mocking the president while he sat not 10 feet away. That's just too much of a scandal and ratings raiser to ignore.

To adopt an ill-fated buzzword, this is going to go viral even if it isn't picked up by the media companies immediately. There's too much momentum behind Colbert and his comments for it not to be. This is the inverse Dean scream for the American web-left. All of the web-centric Dean supporters hoped and prayed that the damn "YARGH" would be dropped, but it was beyond their control. The web cannot make a story unnoticed but it can (with enough penetration, in the marketing sense) make stories.
posted by jmhodges at 3:02 AM on April 30, 2006


If truth be a bomb, Colbert was MOAB! Loved it.
posted by Dizzy Bint at 3:09 AM on April 30, 2006


i'd sure like a bigger video. this is like watching a postage stamp.
posted by wakko at 3:12 AM on April 30, 2006


Great speech, or greatest speech?
posted by Leather McWhip at 3:15 AM on April 30, 2006


Watching the whole thing live on C-Span, right now.
posted by insomnia_lj at 3:17 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm going to go ahead and put you down for "greatest."
posted by Leather McWhip at 3:22 AM on April 30, 2006


He probably knew he had one chance at this thing. Even the slightest Bush criticism would mean hes never come back so he went all out. Bravo. TDS w Jon Stewart is your father's Oldsmobile.
posted by skallas at 3:31 AM on April 30, 2006


wow, that audience was not giving it up. It threw Colbert, but he's a pro and powered through. Washington is a serious city, and I must say watching his routine through their eyes it really gave it gravity and even muted my own laughs. The truthyness almost hurt. Colbert deserves a combat medal.
posted by Blingo at 3:36 AM on April 30, 2006


Interesting how the montage of clips from previous dinners (though I'm not sure that's where the Kennedy and Johnson clips came from) didn't feature the vignette about Bush's hunt for WMDs.

Colbert killed. I'm starting to enjoy his show more than the Daily Show.
posted by emelenjr at 3:37 AM on April 30, 2006


Watching him do that was surreal...

It was hilarious, but I was just too stunned to laugh.
posted by GooseOnTheLoose at 4:18 AM on April 30, 2006


"As a liberal I feel it did much much more harm then good."

Wow... you support a same-sex marriage ban, agreed that homosexuals are "evil" and gay adoption is an act of "violence", supported sending US troops into Iran, thought that Zell Miller did something "amazing" by backing Bush, called Pfc. Jessica Lynch's statement that the The Pentagon used her, "100% pure garbage", and said that we should "be grateful" that George Bush was there "to save us" after 9/11...

Liberal?! You keep using that word. I do not think that word means what you think it means...
posted by insomnia_lj at 4:30 AM on April 30, 2006


normally, i have to say, digging up old comments to beat someone with is low.. but goddamn. calling yourself a liberal sounds pretty dishonest after that.
posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 4:35 AM on April 30, 2006


"As a liberal I feel it did much much more harm then good."

P0wN3d !
posted by elpapacito at 4:43 AM on April 30, 2006


Yeah, the part when he shit into his own cupped hands, sniffed deeply and vomitted onto it, then, screeching like an albino ape, rubbed the mess into Bush's face until the blood came and the resultant filthy matter dripped down into the president's water glass, from which, before he was dragged away and pistol-whipped by the SS, Colbert drank greedily while shouting "I am the living god! I am the alpha and the omega!" -- that was a bit disgusting.

"And what do you call your act?"

"The Aristocrats!"
posted by Mikey-San at 4:47 AM on April 30, 2006


I can see why C&L cut out the first half... ZZZzzzz.

hmmm, skipped to 13 minutes in, still lame.

If you're making jokes at the expense of a hostile crowd, you've got to really slay them. I am reminded of one joke uttered in Hitler's presence near the end, where an SS attache remarked on the relocation of the Fuhrer's HQ from E Prussia to Berlin:
“Berlin will be most practical as our headquarters : we’ll soon be able to take the streetcar from the eastern to the western front !”
Now that's observational humor.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 4:49 AM on April 30, 2006


Wow.

Go Stephen.

I really hope he's safe after that.
posted by Raoul.Duke at 4:49 AM on April 30, 2006


Apparently Addiction is very liberal in the use of the word liberal.
posted by Zombie Dreams at 4:55 AM on April 30, 2006


Bush's own routine was.... well, frightening to say the least. It's as if we had a just a momentary glimpse at what really goes on in that twisted little simian mind of his. That bit about Cheney being drunk..... It shocked me until I remembered just who was speaking.
posted by IronLizard at 5:02 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm reasonably sure that Bush didn't write his own material.
posted by trey at 5:09 AM on April 30, 2006


Sad for us that Colbert is completely wiped off the BBC story of the dinner.
posted by nj_subgenius at 5:18 AM on April 30, 2006


...same with the AP wire. Sad.
posted by nj_subgenius at 5:21 AM on April 30, 2006


Sure, he probably didn't write his own stuff, but the Bush 'n' Bush bit was actually really funny, and W delivered his lines well. LOL moments inlcluded the Cheny segment:

"I'm just glad I survived the White House shakeup!!"

and (paraphrasing here):

"The Vice President is a good man, he has a good heart--- well, he's a good man."

Colbert had a VERY tough act to follow.
posted by underthehat at 5:25 AM on April 30, 2006


As a ham and cheese sandwich, I feel it did more harm than good.
posted by wakko at 5:29 AM on April 30, 2006


Al Franken wrote in Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot how he did the White House Dinner one year and made so many cracks at Newt Gingrich that Gingrich threatened to beat the shit out of him after the monologue. Given that I'm actually worried Colbert's going to wake up this morning with an eagle head in his bed.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:39 AM on April 30, 2006


What's an "infact"?
posted by psmealey at 5:49 AM on April 30, 2006


Colbert bombed, and it was admirable and awesome. The first joke was a true clunker, but after that, his "flopping" was more attributable to a hostile audience than anything else. Colbert could have done a better job setting up his character/schtick -- popular though he may be, if you're unaware of his tv persona his satire can be mistaken for blowhardedness.

Most telling of the audience's reaction: Laura wouldn't even get up to shake Stephen's hand.

And, though I can't stand the president, his bit was funny. A tad too long, but genuinely funny nevertheless.
posted by herc at 5:54 AM on April 30, 2006


Well, I wouldn't be so sure that Steven Colbert writes all his own material, either. The little quicktime clip (... hm. let me get out my magnifying glass ...) sure did make it seem like the audience was either too scared to laugh, or dead, or both. I think they could have cut the whole Helen chase scene out, and it would have been funnier.
posted by crunchland at 6:13 AM on April 30, 2006


What's really creepy about this is that if you read through the Google News list of stories on this topic, almost all the article (except, of course, the story as reported on a blog) say the same exact things. it's as if one writer wrote the first story and every other writer performed minor rewrites on that story and published it. (Yet the MSM will occasionally fire reporters for 'plagiarism'). Even creepier and more telling is that the "news" being reported is that Bush's double routine "delighted the media." Do they live in a bubble or what? Do we care what "delighted" reporters? No. But the media's self insulation has become so complete that it seems completely unaware of what average people want to hear, and what democracies and free socities need to know in order to properly function.
It's like those conservative myths about an elite who care not for the concerns of the people to whom they report have come true, only it's not a liberal or conservative elite, but rather an elite dedicated to preserving the status of itself.
I think that probably the Bush adminstration's own reality bubble would not have been possible if the media were not already in a reality bubbble of their own.
posted by eustacescrubb at 6:23 AM on April 30, 2006 [1 favorite]


I gotta go with the [adjective] balls crowd on this one.

In a time where you can have your patriotism called into question for simply asking "Why, Mr. President?" To do a routine like this in a place where you could make eye contact with the man?

I half expected little red dots of light to appear on his chest a few minutes in.
posted by Cyrano at 6:29 AM on April 30, 2006


2 or 3 funny bits and the rest was...awkward to say the least. I suppose Colbert is being given psychological leeway by people for the mediocre performance because it was in hostile territory with an unprotected President nearby.

Granted there were barbs about all the trigger points but I thought they were pretty lame for the mostpart. He has balls perhaps but overall that wasn't a great or even good performance. And the briefing room segment was crap.
posted by peacay at 6:30 AM on April 30, 2006


MSNBC has said nothing about Colbert this morning (That I've seen) and I didn't find a mention in their on-line story. I have sent them an innocent inquiry asking about it.

Meanwhile, MSNBC on TV is promo'ing that they are about to play the Pres's yuck-fest in its entirety. The news mannequin joked earlier after a Bush/Bush clip that she will have to redo her make-up after laughing so hard.

Of course, she may have been crying. She was off-camera while the clip played.

CNN's on-line written version does mention Colbert, but dismisses him:
Yet it's the Who's Who of power and celebrity in the audience -- invited by media organizations to their dinner tables -- that draws much of the attention.
posted by mmahaffie at 6:32 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm not sure the media is ignoring Colbert's slagging of the president. I think that, for the most part, they're just lazily giving the story of the dinner what they think it deserves -- scant attention. Perhaps they are unaware of how pleased many of us are that someone stood next to Bush and said these things.

"Bush Lampoons Self!" makes for a far easier, sellable headline. Especially when you can show a picture of Bush standing next to imposter Bush. Try selling, "Colbert Crucifies Our Unloved Leader".
posted by neek at 6:33 AM on April 30, 2006


What's really creepy about this is that if you read through the Google News list of stories on this topic, almost all the article (except, of course, the story as reported on a blog) say the same exact thing

You might want to read up on how wire services (AP, Reuters) work.
posted by malphigian at 6:40 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm actually worried Colbert's going to wake up this morning with an eagle head in his bed.

No! Not Stephen Jr. !
posted by arialblack at 6:43 AM on April 30, 2006


OoooooK I managed to download all of it, the prez was good and handled the minor roast fine and....

Colbert was...I still don't know, one word doesn't give an idea of what we have seen

Initially it looked like Colbert was going to start the "I love my Bushy Cudly Bush" persona a-la Bill O'Reilly, so one would have thought "phew he is just going to do the usual routine" and it went on for a while..the NSA stuff at the beginning was acceptable. The "attack" on China was ok...after all ...they are communist aren't they. "And reality has a well know liberal bias.... " that's a viral line foh sureh ! The 68% logical spin is memorable as well :)

The bomb : "the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world" and from now on it's almost vitriol against facts being forgotten, stubborn beliefs and the attacks on the media "just put it throught a spell check and go home" which I think was too oblique for many to understand, probably even for "the media". And the almost final line "I have nothing but contempt for this people, I know how to handle these clowns" and nobody knows how serious he was :)
posted by elpapacito at 6:44 AM on April 30, 2006


It's painful and uncomfortable to watch, which is exactly why it's so fantastic. He had to have known that even some people who think he's funny would be guarding their reaction to his routine, and that he was going to go down in flames. Watching someone walk the plank like that is just riveting.

It comes across as a total black eye on the evening, with the reality of what he's saying being too bitter a pill to be swallowed with just a few chuckles. The fact that it goes on for soooo loooong emhasizes that completely. Which is exactly what they get for asking him to speak-- whoever thought it would be a great idea and made the arrangements obviously didn't have a clue.

I actually stood up in shock when he told them that their grandchildren wouldn't know what a glacier was. Awesome.
posted by hermitosis at 6:49 AM on April 30, 2006


Liberal?! You keep using that word. I do not think that word means what you think it means...

There's a faction on the right that does this just so they can pull out a tedious speech on what it means to be a "classical liberal" when someone finally calls them on their bizarre usage, although they don't use that term properly either.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 6:53 AM on April 30, 2006


The audience didn't uniformly laugh uproariously, but there were plenty of laughs and chuckles at most of his lines, and some lines got a great response. I don't see why everyone is saying the crowd was so hostile and everything went down like a lead balloon... unless Omarr's link had a laugh track added in later.

The video bit at the end didn't do much for me though.
posted by Hal Mumkin at 6:53 AM on April 30, 2006


It seems like some people are not getting it.

This was not a comedy routine. It was a satire. It wasn't even a satire, it was a public execution. And it was an incredibly damning thing. He called the administration out, point by point on all their lies, their crimes and the total and complete absurdity that is the message they expect us to take as truth in a perfect way -- by pretending that he believed it all.

I've never seen anything like it. the fact that he did it right to the man's face is astonishing. The president deserves no pomp or respect, certainly, but Colbert hurt him more than he could have with any insult.... he bounced the man's own agenda back at him over and over and over in a forum where he had to sit there and take it -- his ideas stated so plainly that they mocked themselves. And they were not funny to hear... just shocking because through this a real Truth was revealed.
posted by n9 at 6:54 AM on April 30, 2006


That was good. Thank you Surfurrus.
posted by caddis at 6:56 AM on April 30, 2006


He started off strong, but the filim clip was tedious and unfunny.

I agree. Wow was that press secretary video ever tedious and unfunny.
posted by dobbs at 6:59 AM on April 30, 2006


Interesting that it's not posted on youTube because it's longer than 10 minutes and thus must be pirated.
posted by smackfu at 7:08 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm with the public execution viewpoint. And I think the length it went on served the point. It wasn't just barbed and uncomfortable -- we had to wallow in it. I take pleasure in knowing that the president had to sit through it.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:09 AM on April 30, 2006


Wow...the wire stories hardly mention Colbert, and the right wing sycophants are all singing in perfect harmony this morning that "Bush rocked, Colbert bombed." (Seriously, check out Malkin, Captain's Quarters, etc...they all say the same thing.)

I haven't seen the performance yet, but that reaction betrays them. Colbert must be at the top of the talking points fax today. He got to them.
posted by edverb at 7:14 AM on April 30, 2006


I take pleasure in knowing that the president had to sit through it.

And what makes you think he was listening? I bet you he pretty much zoned out.
posted by tapeguy at 7:18 AM on April 30, 2006


Doubtful. He's famously bad at taking bad news and criticism. I imagine the whole experience was one long, slow burn for him.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:28 AM on April 30, 2006


The full video is WAY funnier than the FPP video. The press secretary thing still sucks but the opening routing is spot on. Bush even chuckles during some of it.
posted by dobbs at 7:28 AM on April 30, 2006


I take pleasure in knowing that the president had to sit through it.

And what makes you think he was listening? I bet you he pretty much zoned out.


Seeing how that is how he normally deals with reality, i wouldn't be surprised, either.
posted by TechnoLustLuddite at 7:30 AM on April 30, 2006


YouTube Link: Part 1, Part 2
posted by blue_beetle at 7:32 AM on April 30, 2006


i can see the exact moment he gets really pissed.... right after the bit about standing on aircraft carriers and rubble. his facr goes to a grim mask at that point.
posted by n9 at 7:33 AM on April 30, 2006


kristol v. colbert :P

a master debate!
posted by kliuless at 7:34 AM on April 30, 2006


Wow...the wire stories hardly mention Colbert, and the right wing sycophants are all singing in perfect harmony this morning that "Bush rocked, Colbert bombed." (Seriously, check out Malkin, Captain's Quarters, etc...they all say the same thing.)

If conservative blogs were around in 1968 when Tommie Smith and John Carlos were stripped of their medals, Malkin and Morrisey would be writing about how their demeanor to the Olympic Committee showed just how silly the idea of civil rights was.

Wait- actually, Malkin and Morrisey are bitching about how silly civil rights are today.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:39 AM on April 30, 2006


I think probably a lot more people in that audience found it funny than actually laughed. I think a lot of people were downright afraid to laugh at him in the presence of the President.
posted by Nicholas West at 7:47 AM on April 30, 2006


I think probably a lot more people in that audience found it funny than actually laughed. I think a lot of people were downright afraid to laugh at him in the presence of the President.

Did no one else notice the lady in the audience who burst out laughing and quickly covered up by facing down to regain her composure?
posted by IronLizard at 7:53 AM on April 30, 2006


Even creepier and more telling is that the "news" being reported is that Bush's double routine "delighted the media." Do they live in a bubble or what? Do we care what "delighted" reporters? No. But the media's self insulation has become so complete that it seems completely unaware of what average people want to hear, and what democracies and free socities need to know in order to properly function.

Hey, eustacescrubb, it is the Whitehouse Correspondence Dinner, it's a party for the press corp - so that's why it's relevant how the media felt about various routines.
posted by ill3 at 7:57 AM on April 30, 2006


I stayed up to watch the Cspan show again. The second showing was different (!!). The box with Bush's face was not there. What happened?

Also, my reaction was different. This second time I sat through the rewards part of the dinner to hear Colbert. It was sickening. These media people were lauding and applauding each other for 'grand achievements' in reporting -- awards for things like breaking the Duke Cunningham story or the appointment of John Roberts to the Supreme Court. Fairly safe stories. THEN they would each run over to Bush (almost bowing), shake his hand and pose for their picture with his arm around them. Bush is good at jumping up for a photo op.

Bush got a standing ovation from this audience for his 'skit'.

No wonder they didn't 'get' Colbert.

How can they look in the mirror in the morning??
posted by Surfurrus at 7:58 AM on April 30, 2006


if you're unaware of his tv persona his satire can be mistaken for blowhardedness

Which is his whole intention, to come off a O'Reilly. He did this perfectly. Those who are "disgusted" must be disgusted with O'Reilly as well...
posted by juiceCake at 7:59 AM on April 30, 2006


What's really creepy about this is that if you read through the Google News list of stories on this topic, almost all the article (except, of course, the story as reported on a blog) say the same exact things. it's as if one writer wrote the first story and every other writer performed minor rewrites on that story and published it.

Yeah, just who is Elizabeth White?
posted by Surfurrus at 8:04 AM on April 30, 2006


Mr. Colbert's testicular fortitude vastly exceeds mine. In fact, from here on out, I will refer to his show as the Carries-His-Huevos-In-a-Wheelbarrow Repor(t).

Stephen Colbert's persona is all about lampooning the pundits. Think of his bits: The Word is right from O'Reilly. Threatdown is Olbermann's Countdown. His self-indulgent cheer-for-me personality on the show comes from, well... most of them, perhaps an echo mostly of Joe Scarborough.

Remember there are people who still manage to grant The Daily Show "serious" interviews, thinking they're a real news program. Stephen Colbert, unless you know his background on TDS, could pass in a lot of minds as a quirky but otherwise dedicated and conforming soldier of the right wing. That's his brilliance.
posted by symphonik at 8:16 AM on April 30, 2006


That was a brilliant performance by Mr. Colbert.
posted by ludwig_van at 8:23 AM on April 30, 2006


Bush is certainly the worst president of my lifetime. Maybe he's the worst ever. But....

Boy, was that not funny. I admire the courage it takes to attack the president to his face like that but it just was not at all funny. I didn't even chuckle once. Just nothing. Yes, it's difficult to be funny when nobody is laughing but then Colbert's "audition clip" was painfully bad, like something high-school kids would put together, and there's no way to blame that on an unreceptive audience. I was embarrassed for him. Imagine what a comedian who was actually funny would have done with an opportunity like that. What a waste.
posted by TimeFactor at 8:30 AM on April 30, 2006


I can't help but feel that, despite Colbert's statement that it was "Just for laughs," people going on about how unfunny it was are completely missing the point.

i.e., The point ----> .







You guys--> .
posted by ludwig_van at 8:36 AM on April 30, 2006


FOOL:
May not an ass know when the cart
draws the horse? Whoop, Jug! I love thee.
posted by taosbat at 8:38 AM on April 30, 2006


I thought it was fantastic. Zing! The "audition clip" portion was so so.
posted by Mr_Zero at 8:40 AM on April 30, 2006


RE: the media are ignoring this story...

Have any of you considered the fact that it's Sunday morning, and the AP story was probably filed before the dinner even happened. Most of the journos who were there are probably still hung over.
posted by simra at 8:42 AM on April 30, 2006


If you're going to pie someone in the face, put on the damn chicken suit. I have no idea how much preparation went into Colbert's bit. But the Helen Thomas video at the end seemed like it was calculated to soften the impact of Colbert's lampooning. What could have been a truly legendary moment ended flat.
posted by horsewithnoname at 8:57 AM on April 30, 2006


Huh, that was really interesting. I didn't find much of it "funny" other than the Scalia bit.

I think it suffered from the opposite problem that the President's infamous "where are those WMDs" schtick from a few years ago did. In that case, it was a powerful man treating his serious failure with inappropriate levity; in this case there almost seemed to be an inappropriate gravitas much of the time. The line about "standing on an aircraft carrier, standing on rubble" is pretty pointed, but it would be more at home in an opponent's stump speech than a routine delivered by a comedian.

The comments directed at the press itself struck me as harsher than those directed at the President. In the latter case, they're comments based on disagreeing with what he's doing; in the former case, they're based on the idea that the press is longer doing its job at all.

There was one brilliant throwaway line that seemed to go by almost unnoticed. At the end of the bit about the President's approval rating, he says the glass is still a third full, but you wouldn't want to drink it because "the last third is mostly backwash anyway". Ouch.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:59 AM on April 30, 2006


The point: Colbert's inability to be funny made the whole thing pointless. Nobody who doesn't already despise Bush is going to see it as a triumph. The choir doesn't need preaching to. When the preacher's a flop it's not going to sway anyone who isn't already in the choir.
posted by TimeFactor at 9:05 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm sure Colbert's script was not a suprise to the Bush camp, they probably read an advance copy.

I thaught Bush and his doppleganger were funny. When Bush calls the UN nuclear inspection team the "EIEIO" that was funny.

Colbert was brilliant up to the crack about Bush's appearances on rubble and flooded city squares being the most powerful staged photo ops. That was aharsh cheap shot given that all presidents have the unenviable obligation to make an appearance at the site of national disasters, even if it's a delayed appearance as often is the case with Bush. Painting Bush's appearance at ground zero as purely disengenuine is probably where Colbert lost most of the crowd.
posted by StarForce5 at 9:07 AM on April 30, 2006


The etherkillers and mininova links are colberdotted. Could someone who's downloaded a high quality file rapidshare it, please?
posted by fleetmouse at 9:09 AM on April 30, 2006


ludwig_van gets it.

Also, My favorite part:

Addressing the reporters, he said, "Let's review the rules. Here's how it works. The president makes decisions, he’s the decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Put them through a spell check and go home. Get to know your family again. Make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration. You know--fiction."
posted by diocletian at 9:09 AM on April 30, 2006


At this point, does anybody believe the 30 some odd percent who still aprove of Bush can be reasoned with?

I think a scream of inarticulate rage in Bush's direction would be plenty satisfying at this moment; the fact that Colbert was so articulate made it even more satisfying.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:10 AM on April 30, 2006


This was pure performance art, it wouldn't have worked if the audience wasn't made uncomfortable by it.

If they wanted more laughs they could have gotten Billy Crystal to read some canned cliched jokes, but this was a different brand of performance entirely.
posted by Space Coyote at 9:12 AM on April 30, 2006


Bush's appearance at ground zero

bush went to japan?
posted by quonsar at 9:14 AM on April 30, 2006


Colbert was just OK. There were some funny moments, but I don't think it took as much courage as people seem to think. His approval rating in the the pits. Maybe somebody doing a routine like this when he was at the pinnacle would have been courageous. Now it's just a bit obvious.

What I can't believe is that I just saw Bush (through his doppelganger) making a joke about Cheney being drunk when he shot a man in the face. I always assumed Cheney was drunk, but isn't that basically confirmation? I know we're all supposed to be "past" that whole thing now, but it seems like that's the real story to me.
posted by willnot at 9:17 AM on April 30, 2006


Oh, I found a fast torrent with thousands of peers / seeds and a huge file.

alternate link to torrent
posted by fleetmouse at 9:19 AM on April 30, 2006


The question about whetehr he was funny here is as irrelevant to Colbert's performance as it was when Jon Stewart appeared on Crossfire.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:21 AM on April 30, 2006


I thought it was funny, in a I'm-dying-inside kind of way. Apparently the only way to have public criticism of the press is to pretend it's a joke.

But the best skewering wasn't for Bush, but rather the press corps in front of him.
Here's how it works. The president makes decisions, he’s the decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Put them through a spell check and go home.
No wonder they weren't laughing.
posted by Nelson at 9:25 AM on April 30, 2006


er, "Apparently the only way to have public criticism of Bush is to pretend it's a joke."
posted by Nelson at 9:26 AM on April 30, 2006


This also illustrates the difference between Bush and dictator. Colbert would now be in 6 seperate pieces if Bush was a dictator.

Our freedom of expression is still relatively intact, barring joking around in an airport. We have got to get rid of these clowns before any more of it is compromised.

Bush was amusing because that, in the final analysis, is where his talent lies. As an actor; a performer. He is the public face of the hidden policy machine behind him, very much like Reagan, but smarter, if you can believe it. But Bush would have made a fine comedian a la The Cable Guy. His comic timing is more often than not flawless; it's just appalling that he jokes around at all considering what is happening in this world because of him.

Anybody know how Cheney reacted to Colbert? Was he there?
posted by Nicholas West at 9:26 AM on April 30, 2006


colbert's humor is born of frustration .
like the frustration many of us feel about what is going on in the country. the total lack of an honest discussion on 'where we are', 'where we are going' , and 'how we will get there' as a country.

thats why watching this hurts. it's thinly veiled as comedy, when in fact i anger , absurd , frustrated, and made to come to the presidents ear by way of false pretence. we feel uncomfortable , because the whole thing is brimming over with real emotion, hid, just below the smiling , comic surface.


he bounced the man's own agenda back at him over and over and over in a forum where he had to sit there and take it -- his ideas stated so plainly that they mocked themselves. And they were not funny to hear... just shocking because through this a real Truth was revealed.
posted by n9

posted by nola at 9:30 AM on April 30, 2006


The point: Colbert's inability to be funny made the whole thing pointless. Nobody who doesn't already despise Bush is going to see it as a triumph. The choir doesn't need preaching to. When the preacher's a flop it's not going to sway anyone who isn't already in the choir.

First, you're wrong that it wasn't funny. It was funny because it was true, and because he was saying it to the president. Is the idea of the government illegally spying on its citizens funny? No. But Stephen Colbert getting up in front of president Bush and sarcastically condemning the media for exposing us to such depressing news is funny.

Second, you're wrong about the point. Who says this is preaching to the choir? This wasn't on Comedy Central. His immediate audience consisted of members of the press and Washington heavies, but Colbert seemed to understand that the immediate audience wasn't necessarily the sole intended audience. And now it's out on there on the big old internet.

I think a scream of inarticulate rage in Bush's direction would be plenty satisfying at this moment; the fact that Colbert was so articulate made it even more satisfying.

Indeed.
posted by ludwig_van at 9:33 AM on April 30, 2006


Colbert channeled Andy Kaufman channeling Jonathan Swift. Not especially funny, but definitely brilliant.
posted by localroger at 9:35 AM on April 30, 2006


...I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things, like aircraft carriers, rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong mesasge that no matter what happens to America she will always rebound with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world! ...

hah! : >

(i'll have to give his show another shot if he pushes it this much all the time--he wasn't at all when it started)
posted by amberglow at 9:37 AM on April 30, 2006


Yeah, this was so not about the 'funny'. I'm still not exactly sure if anyone really was sure what was happening. I just.. funny or not, the way things are, to stand up and say this kind of stuff, 10ft away from the president... the name Jose Padilla comes to mind. Still locked up, still no trial.
posted by ninjew at 9:38 AM on April 30, 2006


c-span is now rebroadcasting the dinner.
posted by kongg at 9:39 AM on April 30, 2006


and what Nelson said--the crack about the journalists being better off writing fiction about courageous reporters since none of them are, and a few others, showed he wasn't just ragging on Bush.

What would be hysterical would be if O'Reilly (and the other insane screeching nuts on the right) now go after him, like they do to all the others who dare speak truth in front of Bush.
posted by amberglow at 9:41 AM on April 30, 2006


Because the general cowardise of reporters hasn;t been to the advantage of Bush, oh no.
posted by Artw at 9:42 AM on April 30, 2006


What's saddest is it takes a huge effort like this just to discuss real criticism of the administration in front of the president.

Everyone in the White House is so far insulated from the real population with real concerns that theyre shocked when Colbert comes in there and says something not on the 'party line'. Even when the president is at his weakest and seemingly under assault- no one at the highest levels can voice differant viewpoint (or would even consider it).

The quailty of discourse in our country is literally non-existant, and we have little hope of ever seeing it raised- at least not at the levels that really get to shape policy.
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:45 AM on April 30, 2006


Wow, so much negativity. That was nothing shy of genius, and I doubt we'll ever see much like it again. Thanks for the torrent links.
posted by prostyle at 9:49 AM on April 30, 2006


Medatic reaction is somehow interesting : both the allegedly uberliberal CNN and the uberconservative (not so allegedly) FoxNews run the same AP story. Is it just a coincidence or they are following Colbert suggestion of just-type-and-spellcheck ?

Even funnier

Others on the guest list included rapper-actor Ludacris; James Denton, the hunky plumber on ABC's "Desperate Housewives"; "Dancing With the Stars" winner Drew Lachey; New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin; tennis player Anna Kournikova; and Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

WHA ? All this pointless celebrity , why ? I can understand Nagin, but what's the point of inviting Ludacris, foh pimping da hoez ? But certainly it is my fault, I just don't know ludacris as a riveting satirist or a journalist, but he certainly has mad skillz opinionz I am not aware of.


This also illustrates the difference between Bush and dictator. Colbert would now be in 6 seperate pieces if Bush was a dictator.


Correction, he wouldn't have reached the stage to being with.

But the best skewering wasn't for Bush, but rather the press corps in front of him.

Yes indeed ! By imitating the O'Reilly persona, Colbert slapped the attending guests with an very uncomfortable realization that even O'Reilly would NEVER have pronounced ; the element of truth being : by choosing to shut up on the errors of this government AND the misbehaviors of Republicans and by NOT pressing constantly , YOU "media" actually obeyed the threat and fear campaing that was targeted at the masses. The masses are excused by paradoxical virtue of their infinite ignorance and naivety, but NOT YOU you piece of press who behaved EXACTLY the way Colbert said the press should ....type-spellcheck-print.

This is a swift kick in the balls for anybody who believes he's taken "into consideration" ..reality being, you are lower then the photcopy guy except you believe you are somebody.
posted by elpapacito at 9:51 AM on April 30, 2006


is this the same dinner where Bush did that horrible thing of looking for WMDs under the couch in his office and all over?
posted by amberglow at 9:55 AM on April 30, 2006


Scalia looked like a good sport. He seemed to genuinely think the poke Colbert took at him was funny.
posted by Carbolic at 9:58 AM on April 30, 2006


amberglow: Yep. Same dinner, different year.
posted by jmhodges at 9:59 AM on April 30, 2006


This is obviously the Weekend of Colbert. After his shockingly brilliant takedown of an unprepared Bill Kristol on Thursday, Colbert obviously discomfited many Republicans at the White House Correspondents Dinner; he was the voice of "Ace" on Saturday Night Live's "The Best of TV Funhouse" (with Steve Carrell as "Gary"), and is profiled tonight on CBS News' 60 Minutes.

I find it odd how many people, both speaking at the dinner and in media reports of it, insist on pronouncing the final "t" in "Report" in the title of his show, The Colbert Report. The entire joke is that both "Colbert" and "Report" have a final silent "t", so either they don't get it, have never even heard the show advertised, or are doing it on purpose out of some refusal to let him have "his way." Very odd.
posted by mdeatherage at 10:00 AM on April 30, 2006


Here's my suggestion to the Colbert Report writers: Have Steven now attack Steven for satirizing Bush. Or at least, have him attack the "lefties" who have interpreted his speech as an attack on Bush.

If O'Really? and his types are going to make a stink about this, I think it would be great if the Colbert Report did as well.
posted by mmahaffie at 10:04 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm not a huge Colbert fan, but extra points for balls. Speaking truth to power and all that.
posted by jonmc at 10:08 AM on April 30, 2006


O'Really? O'Reilly? I like the first better.

The one thing I don't get about these events is that people other than journalists who supposedly don't like the President attend. That makes their dislike into somewhat of a joke. It you really don't like someone (or think their policies are bad), you don't socialize with them.
posted by ParisParamus at 10:09 AM on April 30, 2006


PP, It is, after all, their dinner. And, since they are the "White House Correspondents", they have to have the Pres, and/or his people, there.
posted by mmahaffie at 10:12 AM on April 30, 2006


The one thing I don't get about these events is that people other than journalists who supposedly don't like the President attend. That makes their dislike into somewhat of a joke. It you really don't like someone (or think their policies are bad), you don't socialize with them.

Do these people pay for their seats? Because I know I don't turn down a free meal.

Otherwise, that's quite an insightful observation! What filthy hypocrites! I'll never listen to Ludacris again!
posted by ludwig_van at 10:13 AM on April 30, 2006


His show has gotten better over time because it is very character driven, the early episodes are comparitively tedious because he had to establish the character first. Here he was essentially starting from scratch. I thought it was a particularly memorable performance but not a incredibly funny one (funny enough though). If you recall Don Imus in a similar position with Clinton it was a pretty big story. Of course Clinton being Clinton criticism will take the form of dick jokes, Bush being Bush criticism will be take the form of pointing to trainwrecks. It's the difference between semen stains and blood stains.
posted by I Foody at 10:14 AM on April 30, 2006


After the gathering, Snow, while nursing a Heineken outside the Chicago Tribune reception, declined to comment on Colbert. “I’m not doing entertainment reviews,” he said. “I thought the president was great, though.”

He's starting early, isn't he?

uh, with his job, not the beer
posted by hoborg at 10:18 AM on April 30, 2006


Wow. That was intense. Colbert has won earned my undying admiration.
posted by jenovus at 10:19 AM on April 30, 2006


Do not feed the weenus.
posted by fleetmouse at 10:20 AM on April 30, 2006


Crap. PP wrote "people other than journalists who supposedly don't like the President" and I read "journalists who supposedly don't like the President".

That makes my subsequent comment, well, stupid.

Sorry PP. I was putting words in you keyboard.
posted by mmahaffie at 10:20 AM on April 30, 2006


The president doesn't come to the White House Correspondents Dinner for the hunting, does he?
posted by Balisong at 10:25 AM on April 30, 2006


I understand the critiquing his delivery and all that, but really, I think some people have lost focus on what these events are usually like. This was a departure. And it's sort of disgusting to insist on only the most superlative entertainment form while in the presence of these people. I found it disgusting for people to laugh at the president's slideshow of him looking for WMD in the White House. To laugh at that is to hamstring their indignation at being lied to. Colbert's persistance in the face of crickets from the audience was inspiring.

big brass balls indeed.
posted by Busithoth at 10:29 AM on April 30, 2006


Metafilter: It's the difference in semen stains and blood stains
posted by aburd at 10:33 AM on April 30, 2006


Is today's current poll at The Colbert Nation (the unofficial web site of Stephen Colbert run by Comedy Central) a sly referencial aside to last night's "W is for Weber" Press Club roasting, mayhaps?
    TODAY'S POLL What would you do if you were attacked by a chimp?!
  • Try to reason with it
  • Try to fight it
  • Give it a tuxedo and roller skates and pray that its training takes over
posted by Dunvegan at 10:57 AM on April 30, 2006


.
posted by punkbitch at 11:00 AM on April 30, 2006


I have a lot of questions about how well Colbert's character works in this type of environment. His satire is interesting, and when he's running off-the-cuff in interviews on his show it's intriguing to watch how he dances the line with his guests. Here... I'm just not sure. Maybe it has to do with the inconsistency of the material. Maybe it's that his character is giving a speech for another situation in this one. I mean, the dinner isn't a faux rally, but his material acts like it is.

In Colbert's defense though, having to topically lampoon someone so vulnerable is a tough task. The President could have used the exact same material as Colbert did and no one would have thought anything about it. That's the thing that fascinates me the more I play with this in my head.

In regards to people complaining about the press not picking up the story... It's really not the mainstream press's place to report on themselves. Putting up an incendiary host at this dinner, and then making it a top story is an ethical/credibility issue for the AP. They'll let the alt.weeklies and outlets like Editor and Publisher handle the heavy reportage if they'd like. Of course, chances are good you'll see it on the commentary shows, because god knows they have no ethics/credibility.
posted by pokermonk at 11:01 AM on April 30, 2006


Noticed they need to update the Dead to Me/On Notice list... Business Casual was let off the hook a couple weeks ago to make room for the singer for The New Cars.

Jesus. It's sad I know that.
posted by absalom at 11:02 AM on April 30, 2006


i'm watching it now. Damn. Colbert is hard-core.

Colbert has won earned my undying admiration.

Well said. i coudn't agree more.
posted by quin at 11:03 AM on April 30, 2006


In regards to people complaining about the press not picking up the story... It's really not the mainstream press's place to report on themselves.

Yeah, right! Watch the natural progression of any major story. First there are the reports about the story. Once those have been covered, they move on to the stories about how the press covered the stories. The press reports on themselves all the time. I can't even begin to imagine what you're on about.
posted by willnot at 11:08 AM on April 30, 2006


I love this guy. It was more than a blood letting. Colbert wielded language with the same deadly precision that a master samurai wields a sword, going right to the gut and heart. Bush & Co. including their Dick-whipped military "professionals", so used to being protected by the media whores, were stunned. Delightful.
posted by chance at 11:11 AM on April 30, 2006




Damn, why do some of you morons keep up with the "it was not funny" shit? What is up with your brains? This was not a fucking comedy routine. It was a PISSTAKE OF THE PRESIDENT, RIGHT TO HIS FACE.

The best satire is about making its target uncomfortable, not about making a bunch of spoon-fed, ADD-addled airheads giggle over their fucking cheetos.

Idiots. What a fucking country.
posted by Decani at 11:26 AM on April 30, 2006


It's the difference between semen stains and blood stains.

Wow. A better summary of the last six years I can't recall.
posted by docpops at 11:26 AM on April 30, 2006


This is more or less exactly what I would do if I were in front of GWB and a big crowd of people, because he deserves it, as far as I can reason. Yet I didn't enjoy watching it because it felt overwhelmingly ungentlemanly on Colbert's part. Maybe it was the length of the performance, maybe it was the ambush aspect - but I actually started to feel a little bad for GWB.

Maybe Colbert, having clearly decided to not pull many punches, should have ditched the comedy (particularly considering the audience) and just let-fly more directly at the president and his accomplices. It would have been even braver, I think, and probably easier to laugh at.

Mad, mad props to Colbert, none-the-less. I suspect this moment will not go unremembered when the failures of GWB's administration are considered by history.
posted by chudmonkey at 11:29 AM on April 30, 2006


What others have said. How is Colbert "preaching to the choir"? The president was 20 frickin' feet away from him!
posted by bardic at 11:47 AM on April 30, 2006


The silence that greeted this line (regarding retired generals and the military) was deafening:

If you're strong enough to go on one of those pundit shows, you can stand on a bank of computers and order men into battle.

Full transcript here.
posted by kongg at 11:50 AM on April 30, 2006


Blingo: "wow, that audience was not giving it up. It threw Colbert, but he's a pro and powered through. Washington is a serious city, and I must say watching his routine through their eyes it really gave it gravity and even muted my own laughs. The truthyness almost hurt. Colbert deserves a combat medal."

I completely agree. I think this revealed how much his act is affected by its audience. He did seem a bit off and I think its because he wasn't getting the same energy. That said, my husband and I were dying with laughter watching it on MSNBC last night. They did a split screen with the pres, whp seemed either blasted, unsure of who Colbert even was, or annoyed. He scurried off really fast when the (boring, although I forever love Helen Thomas) film clip was over.
posted by macadamiaranch at 11:50 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm with Decani.
posted by wsg at 11:52 AM on April 30, 2006


I'm still downloading the big version, but the transcript is great. He's clearly a much better writer (or has much better writers) than performer.

John McCain. What a maverick. Somebody find out what fork he used on his salad, because I guarantee you wasn’t a salad fork. He could have used a spoon.
posted by mrgrimm at 12:07 PM on April 30, 2006


Yet I didn't enjoy watching it because it felt overwhelmingly ungentlemanly on Colbert's part. Maybe it was the length of the performance, maybe it was the ambush aspect - but I actually started to feel a little bad for GWB.

I had the same thought, but then I realized after the shock and insult to my intelligence and sense of morality in the last 6 years, I think the president could stand to take it in the face for 20 minutes.

(and thanks for the FPP surfurrus, the wikipedia link to "truthiness" provided nice context for what Colbert has been trying to do with his satire. I really admire the intelligence behind his humor more now.)
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 12:09 PM on April 30, 2006


YouTube has it in three parts.

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
posted by phichens at 12:12 PM on April 30, 2006


Some seem to be concentrating on Colbert bitchslapping the Prez a little : in my humble opinion, he wasn't nearly as mistread as he could have been and Colbert was rather gentle with him, for the standard of "gentleness" of a roasting sessions. Actually the Prez imitator did a better job of minimizing the prez shortcoming while making he look like a loveable fool.

The big "FUCK OFF" went to media, imho.

Yet it wasn't just like screaming "fuck off" on top of the lungs like any Joe could do by revealing anger and impotent frustration ; it was an excellently delivered clue-call, delivering the top news "Word is out : you are so much the bitch of this administrations and it's so crystal clear evident it is no longer funny". Well deserved.

On a tangent: evidently nobody delivered Colbert a big big fat check to shut the fuck off, or the offer was laughable, or gasp he is really mad at the media.
posted by elpapacito at 12:12 PM on April 30, 2006


Taxonomy works by establishing cleavage points. I've decided that a good cleavage point for defining types of humor is that things can be funny because they relieve tension through comfortable lies or things can be funny because they create tension through uncomfortable truth.

Bush is a good clown, a damn good clown. I don't mean this as a back-handed insult but as an honest compliment. He is likable. He has good timing. He, at least superficially, puts people at ease. He is excellent at making serious problems seem less serious. Unfortunately he is our president and it is bad to choose a clown as president. Not enough people (Bush included) know that Bush is a great clown, this is a serious tragedy.

Colbert is a good satirist. He is smart and mean and honest. The more smart, honest, and mean he is the funnier he is. Here he is to funny for laughs. Colbert's success is that he engineered 20 uncomfortable very minutes. This more than laughter is a success, it is fine to laugh at a clown but it is awful to believe one. That flower will squirt water at you. That smile is painted on. Colbert made a room full of (self) important people see that they have been fooled and they resented it.
posted by I Foody at 12:13 PM on April 30, 2006


I'm a Green, liberal at heart. I was really glad that Colbert was up there, saying what he said. But I have to agree, that it made me uncomfortable for some reason, and I didn't laugh.

It's because the stuff that he pointed out wasn't funny.

The war isn't funny. Being lied to about the war isn't funny. Bush's handling of Katrina wasn't funny. The press secretary buffoonery and bald faced lies aren't funny.

I'm glad Colbert did it, and I like the guy. But I couldn't laugh at what he was saying, because it was too tragic and too true.
posted by rougy at 12:17 PM on April 30, 2006


Shouldn't a secret service man have jumped on the president at some point?

The big "FUCK OFF" went to media, imho.


I agree. The president was taking body blows but the audience was machine gunned into silence. You could see it happening. Chuckle.. chortle..oh fuck I am actually the butt of the joke.
posted by srboisvert at 12:32 PM on April 30, 2006


Colbert. Big. Giant. Towering. Satirical. Balls!
posted by dejah420 at 12:36 PM on April 30, 2006


Too bad they couldn't hold the dinner at Ford's Theatre; all that was missing was Colbert screaming "Sic semper tyrranus!" and jumping off the dais.

That was awesome and surreal. Wow. Wow. Wowowowow.

The clip at the end was pretty tedious, but after doing the verbal equivalent of going to every table and (rightfully)spitting in everyone's face, I suppose Colbert needed something to take the edge off.


And am I just a big pervert, or was Valerie Plame totally not wearing a bra?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:39 PM on April 30, 2006




Oops, that should be tyrannus.
And Joe Wilson's wife.

posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:41 PM on April 30, 2006


"Steve Colbert was utterly disgusting. Even the libs didn't laugh most of the time. He was rude, snarky and unpatriotic toward the President and First Lady."

heh. "Whoever invited him failed to realize that he is MOCKING conservatives and Fox News types (especially O'Reilly), not in a nice way either."
posted by mrgrimm at 12:45 PM on April 30, 2006


I just watched the first half of his speech. You know, right up to when he took the media to task, he was killing. Bush didn't seem too happy, but the audience sure sounded like they were enjoying themselves.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:45 PM on April 30, 2006


It's because the stuff that he pointed out wasn't funny.

Which is exactly what made the piece brilliant. It was meant to be a biting, incitive, vitriolic rebuke of the press and the current administration, delivered skillfully like a trojan horse directly into the belly of the beast under the guise of comedy.

It's purpose was not meant to incite laughter, but rather to make it plain to the press and this administration what 70% of America has been trying to say. That they have a job to do and that we are sick of the dishonesty, the treachery and the immoral and manipulative abuses of their status for the sake of personal power and gain.

We laughed either because we felt so uncomfortable for those whom the remarks were directed at, or because we were so delighted that someone was finally saying what we've all wanted to say.
posted by fatbobsmith at 12:46 PM on April 30, 2006


Fatbobsmith -

I'm on your side here. I found myself feeling sorry for Bush, and I couldn't believe it. He has the blood of tens of thousands of people on his hands, and he should be locked up for the remainder of his life - but there I was feeling sorry for the beady-eyed prick.

I'm glad Colbert did it. And I'm glad people could laugh.

I couldn't.
posted by rougy at 12:52 PM on April 30, 2006


1) great, great stuff. 2) what Decani said
posted by mr.marx at 12:58 PM on April 30, 2006


It you really don't like someone (or think their policies are bad), you don't socialize with them.

That may be true in America, but not in a civilised democracy.
posted by Chuckles at 12:58 PM on April 30, 2006


How did I know that was from Canada?
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:06 PM on April 30, 2006


"The heart-warming story of a man who is repeatedly punched in the face."
posted by airguitar at 1:08 PM on April 30, 2006


in his parody "audition tape" for press sec. he drops his keys and then there's a close-up of the keychain which looks like it has a hand-written note on it. anybody else see that or curious as to what it says? it seems deliberate....
posted by punkbitch at 1:16 PM on April 30, 2006


unpatriotic toward the President and First Lady.

This sentiment, and the level of shock and admiration I'm seeing above is really telling. I would hate to live in a country who's leader is so revered / feared that this kind of satire is "courageous".

Bush should be glad he was never visited by Marg, Warrior Princess.
I so wish I could find a video of one of her "impromptu interviews" with PM Chretien for comparison.
posted by Popular Ethics at 1:18 PM on April 30, 2006


"Reality has a well known liberal bias."

"...stand on a bank of computers and order men into battle."

"Welcome to Washington, the chocolate city with a marshmallow center..."

He had some zingers.
posted by rougy at 1:20 PM on April 30, 2006


Because civilised didn't have a zed?
posted by furtive at 1:28 PM on April 30, 2006


it's as if one writer wrote the first story and every other writer performed minor rewrites on that story and published it.

In other news, the sky is blue.

NO SHIT.

When Moby-Dick was first published in the first half of the 19th century, the British publisher omitted the last chapter where Ishmael describes his rescue... consequently, many British reviewers complained "How's he telling this story? Everyone's dead!" A few months later, the book was published in America, last chapter included. The reviews came out shortly after, many of them saying "How's he telling this story? Everyone's dead!"
posted by dagnyscott at 1:33 PM on April 30, 2006


I'm glad Colbert did it, and I like the guy. But I couldn't laugh at what he was saying, because it was too tragic and too true.

IMO, this is the heart of it. The Press Corp holds a roast for the President?! Like they are supposed to be close, jovial friends?

Sorry, no. Having the media in bed with the government is not funny. It is absolutely horrifying.

Colbert took the roast and turned it into a funeral memorial.

Good on him.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:34 PM on April 30, 2006


Thank you metafilter, I wouldn't have caught this without you guys!
posted by Artw at 1:39 PM on April 30, 2006


The beginning of the clip, which I hadn't seen at first, has some of the best bits.

"Shoot me in the face!"
posted by ludwig_van at 1:53 PM on April 30, 2006


Colbert typically strikes me as overreaching and in the process as, gulp, unfunny. However, in this instance, this was less for laughter than it was as someone upthread called it, a trojan horse. A spectaular call-out, thinly veiled as roasting and comedic merrymaking. Brilliant, and Colbert has totally won my respect.
posted by moonbird at 1:57 PM on April 30, 2006


so is there a link to the bush skit yet or have i missed it ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 1:59 PM on April 30, 2006


Maybe it was the mood I was in last night, I don't know. But I read that everybody was rolling on the floor laughing at what Colbert said, and when I finally found the movie...I just flat out couldn't laugh. Then I saw a few other people who felt the same, and I...just had to let them know I felt that way, too.

Thing is, I agree with what most people are saying: how it was something that had to be said, how it wasn't supposed to be funny anyway, but rather a stab at the heart of the beast.

Bush supporters wouldn't laugh because they think Bush is a god or super hero, and that his motives are inviolable.

I didn't laugh because Bush is the face of modern day evil, and he's not out of office...yet.

People are dead because of that man. A lot of people.
posted by rougy at 2:00 PM on April 30, 2006


So American's have been too lazy to read the fucking book since pretty much day one, huh? Niiice.
posted by graventy at 2:02 PM on April 30, 2006


From homunculus' link: I cannot believe our president was forced to endure this disgusting insult. I am beyond ashamed.

Beats waterboarding.
posted by brundlefly at 2:03 PM on April 30, 2006


Oh, that's just a collegiate prank. Being snotty to the president-- that's a real offense!
posted by Astro Zombie at 2:05 PM on April 30, 2006


there was nothing 'kaufmanesque' about this guys performance - his timing was/is/will ever be off (viz kaufman in snl , taxi etc)- he had a lot of great things to say which i agree with but the guys timing was off , and without a clip of the bush skit to compare with in this thread and you guys building up this colgate chappie to be some sort of demigod it looks as though bush actually made a funny.
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:09 PM on April 30, 2006


So what if his timing was off? He said it without screaming. That's better than I'd ever manage in that situation.
posted by maryh at 2:13 PM on April 30, 2006


I do understand the impulse to feel sorry for Shrub a bit, during this. But it passes pretty quickly, when you realize it has zero effect on his ability to continue his egregious behavior when he leaves that room.

and this video reminds me to see a taping of the show before he gets whacked.
posted by Busithoth at 2:17 PM on April 30, 2006


well he should just have screamed.
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:20 PM on April 30, 2006


>>there was nothing 'kaufmanesque' about this guys performance

Right. Kaufman is an over-rated comedian known for his bizarre comedy which often lacked substance and even punchlines. A blip on the radar until gen-x dug up his bones recently. I also agree its lazy to bring up kaufman everytime something out of the ordinary happens in comedy. Its not Kaufman-esque. intergender wrestling and making fun of immigrants is Kaufmanesque. If it has a message or is fueled by any sort of passion its not absurdist.

>>colgate chappie to be some sort of demigod it looks as though bush actually made a funny.

Well, first off, its Colbert not Colgate. Lots of people here watch his show which is incredible. Now we suddenly find out the man just mocked the president to his face for 15 minutes. Its pretty exciting but its not Friar's club "I was at a nudist colony and..." guffaws. Sorry if you don't like scathing political satire and someone who took a comedic gig and turned into a roast while saying all the things we wished we could say to this administration and the press. If you like you can have my copy of "Truly Tasteless Jokes" from 4th grade.
posted by skallas at 2:38 PM on April 30, 2006


sgt.s, you can see the Bush skit at the beginning of the complete video linked above.

I have to say, I like Colbert, but Bush's routine actually got me to laugh out loud more often than Colbert's. Maybe it has something to do with what I Foody was saying about the difference between clowns and satirists. Colbert was at his best skewering the press corps:

Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration. You know - fiction!

That, to me, said a lot more about his ballsiness than badmouthing a president with a 32% approval rating at an event traditionally designated as a roast of the president. I mean, I liked watching Bush try to slouch under the table, but I don't think it was some towering moment in political history or anything. Seemed pretty par for the course.
posted by whir at 2:41 PM on April 30, 2006


Stephen Colbert's comic acting from early Daily Show and Strangers With Candy was really something special, but when the Daily Show found religion and turned to preachy, uncreative, blunt satire, Colbert's true comedy art was diluted and ruined. Go ahead and compare his amazing Chevy Chase roast with his Bush roast - the timing, everything is gone now. The Colbert Report is mostly unwatchable.
posted by dgaicun at 2:56 PM on April 30, 2006


all day today, what does CNN choose to rerun over and over? the bit with Bush and his double--uproarious laughter heard from the audience during it, and the CNN anchors laughing on-air immediately after showing it too.


Ignoring Colbert: A Small Taste of the Media's Power to Choose the News

posted by amberglow at 2:59 PM on April 30, 2006


I have to agree that Colbert had some really good lines in his act. And it is a fairly sad testament to our times that the only people in mainstream media who are saying what, ostensibly, 68% of us are thinking, happen to be comedians.

Just thought of the court jesters...maybe it's always been like that....
posted by rougy at 3:02 PM on April 30, 2006


Bush's skit was funny - but Colbert's was real. He wasn't there to make the people laugh, he was speaking at the white house correspondents' dinner, live on C-SPAN, with the president present, and he could say whatever he wanted. He had to basically put a veneer of comedy over his protest to make it acceptable to the people there. I'm glad he did it, and while I don't think it will have much effect, it will be looked upon affectionately in years to come as an example of the growing public opposition to bush.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 3:15 PM on April 30, 2006


Google Check:

"stephen colbert white house dinner" - 18 hits
"george bush white house dinner" - 1050 hits
posted by rougy at 3:37 PM on April 30, 2006


I thought the president's spot was pretty funny; but then Colbert came on and it was pretty mind-blowing. I have to give him props for having the guts to say some of the stuff to the prez's face.

Btw, did anyone catch what Laura said to Colbert when he was shaking hands at the end? I'm not a lip reader, but she was visibly mad and it looked to me like she said "Go to h*ll", but I could be mistaken.
posted by Jin78 at 3:40 PM on April 30, 2006


and this video reminds me to see a taping of the show before he gets whacked.

When I was watching this earlier, I found myself flashing on the TV host subplot in the movie V for Vendetta.
posted by hwestiii at 3:47 PM on April 30, 2006


nobody's mentioned the line about Joe Wilson and his lovely wife Valerie Plame... oops... I mean his lovely wife Joe Wilson's wife.

both of them seemed to get a real kick out of that.
posted by pruner at 3:56 PM on April 30, 2006


rougy - Google Check:

well, Bush has appeared at 5 more WHC Dinners than Colbert has, and he is the "guest of honor".
posted by pruner at 3:57 PM on April 30, 2006


Reflecting upon someone else's comment, I think it'd be good to elaborate on Canada's Marg, Princess Warrior.

Marg is Mary Walsh, a heavy-set middle-aged comedienne who would dress up in Xena togs. Wielding a plastic broadsword and camera crew, she would bully her way through the press gaggle to set loose a terrifying shock and awe monologue thoroughly upbraiding her victim.

Naturally, no one is really ever prepared to go toe to toe with a big woman wearing too little clothing, too many sparkles, and a big-ass sword. Our politicos were usually dumbfounded by the experience. Those who fancied themselves quick-witted enough to match her were inevitably bested in a humiliating manner. You can not win against Marg, Princess Warrior, a woman with absolutely no self-respect left to lose.

I doubt anyone would be able to get close enough to the President to do the same to him. Sword-wielding women are probably shot on sight by his security detail.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:02 PM on April 30, 2006


pruner - ah!

So you've heard all about Colbert's gig from the likes of CNN and other mainstream media sources?

Results are not scientific - I was mainly pointing out the media's white-washing of the show.
posted by rougy at 4:05 PM on April 30, 2006


When I was watching this earlier, I found myself flashing on the TV host subplot in the movie V for Vendetta.

You're not the only one. Let's hope he doesn't get black bagged.
posted by brundlefly at 4:07 PM on April 30, 2006


"Cheney, have the Rolling Stones killed."
"But sir--"
"Just do it!"
posted by brevator at 4:35 PM on April 30, 2006


the Colbert segment just started on 60 Minutes (East coast).
posted by pruner at 4:39 PM on April 30, 2006


"...the Colbert segment just started on 60 Minutes (East coast)."

No one is more surprised than me.
posted by rougy at 4:44 PM on April 30, 2006


This blog gets it.

...the best kind of political satire, resonated as hard-hitting political commentary disguised as stupidity

And in the comments...

This comedian was so good, he left nobody laughing. Get it?
George does.

posted by Decani at 4:44 PM on April 30, 2006


Oops, forgot the link.
posted by Decani at 4:45 PM on April 30, 2006


I put up a wmv version of the whole thing if anyone wants it.

48megs o' fun, go get it.
posted by VMC at 4:47 PM on April 30, 2006


Yet I didn't enjoy watching it because it felt overwhelmingly ungentlemanly on Colbert's part.

Oh, good point, vicar. I'm sure the bereaved and maimed in Iraq would share your beautifully sensitive concern that Mr Bush should not be subjected to "ungentlemanly" behavior.
posted by Decani at 5:04 PM on April 30, 2006


Just want to say: yay!
posted by fungible at 5:23 PM on April 30, 2006


Doesn't seem to be working VMC?
posted by JHarris at 5:31 PM on April 30, 2006


From the blog transcript at Culture to Go:

To Senator John McCain: "So wonderful to see you coming back into the Republican fold. I've actually got a summer house in South Carolina. Look me up when you go to speak at Bob Jones University."

Awesome.
posted by JHarris at 5:36 PM on April 30, 2006


Jharris,
I just dumped a link to the wmv file. Firefox handles it fine. I.E., if you are using that, gave me some trouble. Left click the link, then watch to make sure IE didn't trap it with the securitiness thing they have going.

I was able to make it download in IE by left clicking, selecting save as, and then pointing the file dialog at a save spot on the disk. You may be able to make it work by right clicking and selecting save as also, but that didn't work with my version of IE.
posted by VMC at 6:17 PM on April 30, 2006


The material was funny, and I think Colbert is pretty much a genius, but his delivery is a bit shaky. I like him, and loved him on the Daily Show, but just can't get into The Colbert Report. Too much of one guy talking.
posted by zardoz at 6:17 PM on April 30, 2006


"Mencken was an outspoken defender of freedom of conscience and civil rights, an opponent of persecution and of injustice and of the puritanism and self-righteousness that masks the oppressive impulse."

I need to read more Mencken.

So do the CU Boulder cops.
posted by rougy at 6:22 PM on April 30, 2006


(whoops - wrong thread)
posted by rougy at 6:22 PM on April 30, 2006


STANDING OVATION
posted by BobFrapples at 6:36 PM on April 30, 2006


If laughter is used as an indicator (which up until last night has always been used to measure comedic value), Colbert bombed. Even Imus who treated Clinton much more harshly got a better response... that's sad.
posted by TetrisKid at 6:46 PM on April 30, 2006


Reading the transcript underlines the fact that this wasn't meant to be funny. It was scathing. I wish he'd ditched the humor cover, and said it straight up. Then again, I have a feeling he'd have been off the stage if it wasn't delivered under the guise of "comedy."
posted by Zosia Blue at 7:00 PM on April 30, 2006


Great, brave opening. The clip really did defuse the tension, though. If the "script replacement" theory is true, however, he'd have had to work with his original video material.
posted by dreamsign at 7:02 PM on April 30, 2006


Wow, that was awesome.

If laughter is used as an indicator (which up until last night has always been used to measure comedic value), Colbert bombed

I also think that laughter can be an indicator of the audience. For instance, the press laughed much harder last year when Bush gave a slide show and captioned one photo showing him looking under furniture, "Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be somewhere." That's more their style of humor.
posted by Staggering Jack at 7:03 PM on April 30, 2006


In it's entirety:
Thank you ladies and gentlemen

Before I begin I've been asked to make an annoucement. Whoever parked 14 black bullet proof SUVs out front please move them they are blocking in 14 other black bullet proof SUVs and they need to get out

Wow what an honor, the White House correspondents dinner to sit here at the same table as my hero, George W Bush, to be this close to the man, I feel like I'm dreaming. Somebody pinch me. You know what, I'm a pretty sound sleeper that might not be enough somebody shoot me in the face [turns to bush] is he really not here tonight? Damnit, the one guy who could have helped

By the way, before I get started if anyone needs anything at their tables speak slowly and clearly into your table numbers, someone from the NSA will be right over with a cocktail

Mark Smith, ladies and gentlemen of the press corps, Madame first lady, Mr. President. My name is Stephen Colbert and tonight it is my privilege to celebrate this president, 'cause we're not so different, he and I. We both get it. Guys like us we're not some brainiacs on the nerd patrol, we're not members of the fact-inista, we go straight from gut [turns to bush] right sir? That’s where the truth lies right down here in the gut. Do you know you have more nerve endings in your gut than in your head? You can look it up, now I know some of you are going to say I did look it up and that's not true that's 'cause you looked it up in a book, next time look it up in your gut. I did and my gut tells me that’s how our nervous system works. Every night on my show, The Colbert Report, I speak straight from the gut. I give people the truth unfiltered by rational argument. I call it the no fact zone. Fox news [points to audience] I own a copyright on that term

I'm a simple man with a simple mind and I hold a simple set of beliefs that I live by.

Number one I believe in America, I believe it exists my gut tells me that I live there I feel that it extends from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and I strongly believe that it has 50 states. And I cannot wait to see how the Washington Post spins that one tomorrow

I believe in democracy I believe democracy is our greatest export, at least until china figures out how to stamp it out of plastic for 3 cents a unit. As a matter of fact ambassador [chinese name, no idea], welcome. Your great country makes our happy meals possible. I said it’s a celebration.

I believe that the government that governs best is the government that governs least, and by these standards we have setup a fabulous government in Iraq, and I believe, I believe in pulling yourself up by your bootstraps. I believe it is possible I saw this guy do it once in circ de soleil -- it was magical.

And though I am a committed Christian, I believe everyone has their right to their own religion, be it Hindu, Jewish or Muslim, I believe there are infinite paths to accepting Jesus Christ as your personal lord and savior.

Ladies and gentlemen, I believe its yogurt but I refuse to believe it’s not butter.

Most of all I believe in this president, now I know there are some polls out there saying this man has a 32% approval rating, but guys like us [turns to president] we don't pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking [makes airquotes] in reality, and reality has a well known liberal bias

So Mr. President, please pay no attention to the people who say the glass is half full. 32% means the glass is [pauses, laughs, turns to president] it's important to setup your jokes properly sir. Sir, pay no attention to the people who say the glass is half empty, because 32% means its 2/3s empty, there's still some liquid in that glass is my point but I wouldn't drink it the last third is usually backwash.

Ok, look, folks, my point is that I don’t believe this is the low point in this presidency, but see I believe it is just a lull before a comeback. I mean it's like the movie Rocky alright, the president in this case is Rocky Balboa, and Apollo Creed is [pauses] everything else in the world. It's the 10th round, he's bloody, his corner man, nick, who in this case I guess would be the vice president, is yelling cut me Dick cut me and every time he falls everyone says stay down rocky STAY DOWN, but does he stay down? No, like rocky he gets back up and in the end... he actually loses in the first movie. Hmm OK, doesn't matter... doesn't matter the point is the heartwarming story of a man who was repeatedly punched in the face

So don't pay attention to the approval ratings that say 68% of Americans disapprove of the job this man has doing. I ask you this, does that not also logically mean that 68% of people approve of the job he's not doing? Think about it. I haven't.

I stand by this man [turns to president]; I stand by this man because he stand for things, not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers, and rubble, and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message, that no matter what happens to America she will always rebound with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.

Now there may be an energy crisis, well, this president has a very forward thinking energy policy. Why do you think he's down on the ranch cutting that brush all the time? He’s trying to create an alternative energy source. By 2008 we will have a mesquite-powered car.

And I, I'd just like to [turns to president] he's a good Joe, obviously loves his wife. He calls her his better half, and polls show America agrees. She's a wonderful woman, but I just have one beef, ma'am [turns to first lady] this reading initiative, I've never been a fan of books. I don't trust them: all fact no heart. I mean they're elitists telling us what is or isn't true, what did or didn't happen, who is Britannica to tell me the Panama Canal was built in 1914? If I wanna say it was built in 1941, that's my right as an American. I'm with the president, let history decide what did or didn't happen.

The greatest thing about this man is he's steady, you know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday that he believed on Monday, no matter what happened Tuesday. Events can change, this man's beliefs never will. And as [pauses] excited as I am [turns to president] to be with the president, I am appalled to be surrounded by the liberal media is destroying America, with the exception of Fox News. Fox News gives you both sides of every story. The president's side and the vice president's side. But the rest of you, what are you thinking reporting on NSA wire tapping, or secret prisons in Eastern Europe? Those things are secret for a very important reason, they're super depressing. And if that's your goal, well, misery accomplished.

Over the last 5 years you people were so good. Over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn’t want to know and you had the courtesy not to tell us. Those were good times, as far as we knew. But listen let's review the rules, here's how it works. The president makes decisions, he's the decider, the press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Just put it through a spell check and go home. Get to know your family again, make love to your wife! Write that novel you got kicking around in your head; you know the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration: you know, fiction!

Cause really, what incentive do these people have to answer your questions after all. I mean nothing satisfies you, everybody asks for personnel changes, so the white house has personnel changes. And then you write 'oh they're just rearranging the deck chairs on the titanic'. First of all, that is a terrible metaphor. This administration is not sinking, this administration is soaring! If anything they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg.

Now it's not all bad guys out there, there are some of the heroes out here tonight. Jeff Sachs, Ken Burns, Bob Schiefer: I've interviewed all of them. [turns to president] By the way, Mr. President, thank you for agreeing to be on my show. I really appreciate it, I was just as shocked as everyone here is I promise you. How’s Tuesday for you? I've got Frank Rich but we can just bump him, I mean bump him, I know a guy, say the word.

See who we got here tonight, General Mosley, Airforce Chief of Staff. We got General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, they still support Rumsfeld! Right, you guys aren't retired yet, right? Right, they still support Rumsfeld. Look, by the way I've got a theory about how to handle these retired generals causing all this trouble. Don’t let them retire. Come on, we've got a stop loss program; let's use it on these guys. I've seen Zinni and that crowd on Wolf Blitzer. If you're strong enough to go on one of those pundit shows you're strong enough to stand at a bank of computers and order men into battle, come on!

Jesse Jackson is here, the Reverend, haven't heard from the reverend in a little while. I had him on the show, a very interesting interview, a very challenging interview. You can ask him anything but he's gonna say what he wants, at the pace that he wants. It’s like boxing a glacier. Enjoy that metaphor, by the way, because your grandchildren will have no idea what a glacier is.

Justice Scalia is here, Justice Scalia may I be the fist to say [gestures with hand under chin] Welcome sir! [Cut to Scalia laughing heartily] you look fantastic! [More hand gestures] how are you and... Just talking some Sicilian with my paisan.

John McCain is here. John McCain, what a maverick. Somebody find out what fork he used on his salad, because I guarantee you it wasn't a salad fork. This guy could have used a spoon, there's no predicting him. by the way senator McCain, so wonderful to see you coming back into the republican fold, I've actually got a summer house in south Carolina, look me up when you go to speak at Bob Jones university. So glad you've seen the light, sir.

Mayor Nagin, Mayor Nagin is here from New Orleans, the chocolate city. Yeah give it up, Mayor Nagin I'd like to welcome you to Washington DC, the chocolate city with a marshmallow center and a graham cracker crust of corruption. It’s a malomar, I guess is what I'm describing, it's a seasonal cookie.

Joe Wilson is here, Joe Wilson right down here in front the most famous husband since Desi Arnez. And of course he brought along his lovely wife Valerie Plame [stops, covers mouth] oh my god. Oh what have I said, I... jiminy, I'm sorry Mr. President I meant to say, he brought along his lovely wife, Joe Wilson’s wife. Patrick Fitzgerald’s not here tonight, right? Ok, dodged a bullet.

And of course, can't forget, the man of the hour, new press secretary Tony Snow. Secret service name, 'snow job'. Toughest job, what a hero, took the second toughest job in government next to of course the ambassador to Iraq. Got some big shoes to fill Tony, some big shoes to fill. Scott McClellan could say nothing like nobody else. McClellan of course, eager to retire, really felt like he needed to spend more time with Andrew Card's children. [turns to president]now Mr. President I wish you wouldn't have made the decision so quickly sir, I was vying for the job myself, I think I would have made a fabulous press secretary. I have nothing but contempt for these people. I know how to handle these clowns. In fact sir, I brought along an audition tape, and with your indulgence I'd like to at least give it a shot. So ladies and gentlemen, my press conference.

posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:03 PM on April 30, 2006


If laughter is used as an indicator (which up until last night has always been used to measure comedic value), Colbert bombed.

Really? I laughed so loud I'd be surprised if my neighbors didn't hear it.

But I don't think Colbert worries that much about whether he made his (local) audience laugh. Last night was one of those moments where one proves to God whether or not one has a soul. Colbert does.
posted by JHarris at 7:06 PM on April 30, 2006


Thank you so much Mr. Chicken! I was just about to ask for a transcript. You effin' rock.
posted by pwb503 at 7:09 PM on April 30, 2006


"I also think that laughter can be an indicator of the audience."

Also a good point.
posted by TetrisKid at 7:10 PM on April 30, 2006


VMC, I was able to download the video from that link using IE - thanks!


And though I am a committed Christian, I believe that everyone has the right to their own religion, be it Hindu, Jewish or Muslim. I believe there are infinite paths to accepting Jesus Christ as your personal savior.
posted by Bort at 7:17 PM on April 30, 2006


Wow.

I finally got to watch it.

Wow.

Colbert, he has the balls.

Those whinging about delivery, give your freakin' heads a shake: this man put his balls seriously on the line. He Crossed The Line. It would have been gut-churningly nerve-wracking.

Awesome that he was able to get away with it. That says a lot about how much good is left in the system, despite it seemingly have gone off the rails.

It will be telling how Bush handles the media from now on. He's under a lot of pressure to operate transparently, but loves to act secretly. This could force his hand.

Colbert out-Marged by an order of magnitude. She didn't get more than five minutes out of any one encounter. Colbert kicked the golden ball right through the goalposts. A real nut-cracker of a kick.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:02 PM on April 30, 2006


Speaking of balls and kicking:

Bush has been emasculated. Go git 'em, journalists!
posted by five fresh fish at 9:03 PM on April 30, 2006


wtb foror's pst
posted by lazaruslong at 9:29 PM on April 30, 2006


It takes serious cahones to totally wail on the leader of the free world less than 20 feet away from him in a room partially full of his followers.
posted by phrontist at 9:47 PM on April 30, 2006


I finally downloaded the whole dinner, and watched the whole thing in it's entirety.

Bravot, Colbert, Bravot!!
posted by Balisong at 9:52 PM on April 30, 2006


Hey, I already watched the one in the FPP, but I want to see the whole thing, preferably the one with the p.i.p. of Bush's ugly mug --- which of the multiple links above is the best to download? Thanks.
posted by diocletian at 9:54 PM on April 30, 2006


Yet I didn't enjoy watching it because it felt overwhelmingly ungentlemanly on Colbert's part. Maybe it was the length of the performance, maybe it was the ambush aspect - but I actually started to feel a little bad for GWB.

That POS GWB is directly responsible for the deaths of between 30,000 and 100,000 Iraqi civilians and is right now busy trying to gin up another war. Thousands of American soldiers have been killed and maimed for life for his lies.

Yeah, I felt sorry for the little punk.
posted by words1 at 10:02 PM on April 30, 2006


words1 - Well it's not like he makes his own decisions.
posted by Artw at 10:09 PM on April 30, 2006


Ah, it had to happen.

Check this out: http://thankyoustephencolbert.org/ 2666 thank you's and still counting.

Very cool.
posted by Surfurrus at 10:11 PM on April 30, 2006


Brillitastic. I think people miss the point behind the Helen Thomas skit- it was meant to use her grim visage to drive home the seriousness of her relentless question: "why did we go into Iraq? All we've heard is lies." He built up this absurd comedy around it that to me perfectly articulated what comedy is all about- you laugh when it's hopeless.

I just wish Cobert would have had more time- he never touched on intelligent design, the debt, the widening gap between rich and poor, politicizing science, the mission to mars, threatening to use nuclear weapons on Iran, appointing industry lawyers to run federal regulatory agencies, the plan to gut social security, how Bush spent his 90% political capital, etc etc etc. So much material, so much to despair about, so much that must be made fun of.
posted by efbrazil at 11:25 PM on April 30, 2006


Well it's not like he makes his own decisions.

Do you mean he's NOT the Decider?
posted by Balisong at 11:43 PM on April 30, 2006


I've got a theory about how to handle these retired generals causing all this trouble. Don’t let them retire. Come on, we've got a stop loss program; let's use it on these guys. I've seen Zinni and that crowd on Wolf Blitzer. If you're strong enough to go on one of those pundit shows you're strong enough to stand at a bank of computers and order men into battle, come on!

what an amazing silence this produced. what soul. USians should be taking notes.


.
posted by eustatic at 11:51 PM on April 30, 2006


COLBERT '08
posted by mcsweetie at 12:02 AM on May 1, 2006


Which is exactly what they get for asking him to speak-- whoever thought it would be a great idea and made the arrangements obviously didn't have a clue.

Don't be ridiculous, we're all talking about it right? Probably Cspan's highest rated show of the year. And how many people talked about Cedric the Entertainer's performance last year?

Obviously not his best, and muted by the fact that the audience reaction is so poor. I thought the Helen Tomas bit was funny, the rest of that sketch wasn't that great though.
posted by delmoi at 12:02 AM on May 1, 2006


Earlier at dinner I was informing my roommates (who are much more rabidly anti-Bush than me, and I'm no slouch) about the Colbert roast, and they were hella excited. Anyway what's surprising is that I only watched it once and read Stravos transcript once, and yet I was able to perform probably 33% of the whole bit for them from memory!
posted by dgaicun at 12:18 AM on May 1, 2006


Never heard of Stephen Colbert until seeing this. It was a roast unlike roasts of the past -- an indication of just far out things have become in terms of a secretive administration and a cowardly media. Colbert is representing a majority of America who have had it with fun and games.

Colbert's bit was certainly strong medicine and I don't think it was meant to be that funny. The press corp needs it more than they need Bush standing up there with a human pull-string dummy making jokes about his own dangerous ignorance.

I really like that Colbert addressed Bush several times personally, eyeball to eyeball as he continued to turn the rack.

The dude's one stout mofo. Glad to see this video is making the rounds on the net. There were over 3000 seeds when I pulled a torrent of it a little while ago.
posted by rmmcclay at 12:48 AM on May 1, 2006


Anyway, if Steven pussied out he would really have pissed off his fan base. Funny or no, he did what he had do.

Also, just started watching the downloaded torrent. Holy crap his wife is HOT.
posted by delmoi at 12:59 AM on May 1, 2006


Dear Morons:

This was not a comedy routine. That it wasn't funny does not matter. It was delivered as comedy only to allow it to continue uninterrupted; a trojan horse, as has been previously said.

My laughter resulted from a giddyness that someone is actually standing up to the paper dragon.

Laughing at the actual president's comedy routine is just fucking pathetic. Do you not remember who this man is? It's insane that he's even walking around freely, much less making jokes.

Please download the torrent indicated above - the entire bit needs to be watched from start to finish. Whomever decided to cut it the first place is doing the work a disservice.
posted by odinsdream at 1:02 AM on May 1, 2006


I really like that Colbert addressed Bush several times personally, eyeball to eyeball as he continued to turn the rack.

Just how difficult it must be to meet Mr. President eyeball to eyeball and say that stuff needs to be emphasised. Of course certain personality types are liable to have a greater ability than others, but still astonishing!

The dude's one stout mofo. Glad to see this video is making the rounds on the net. There were over 3000 seeds when I pulled a torrent of it a little while ago.

And yet it isn't news.. At the risk of sounding ridiculous, both CBC and CTV covered the Bush and Bush routine, neither mentioned Colbert
posted by Chuckles at 1:04 AM on May 1, 2006


Wow, if you want to see "unfunny" check out the comments of Mark Smith, the president of the whitehouse corrispondants assoc at the beginning of the torrent file...
posted by delmoi at 1:15 AM on May 1, 2006


Dear Morons:

This was not a comedy routine.


Dear Moron:

Yes, it was. Comedy can be deadly serious.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:01 AM on May 1, 2006


He comes across much better in the full torrented version.
posted by delmoi at 2:18 AM on May 1, 2006


For one thing you can see Valarie Plame's nipples.
posted by delmoi at 2:19 AM on May 1, 2006


Jesus, you're dick's leaving a sticky trail in this thread, delmoi. Put the poor little thing away.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:33 AM on May 1, 2006


you're. Fuck me, I caught the Stupid.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:34 AM on May 1, 2006


Any links to a torrent of the 60 Minutes interview?
posted by Dunwitty at 2:57 AM on May 1, 2006


Video of the 60 Minutes piece about Colbert: Link. (video/wmv)
posted by Space Coyote at 3:02 AM on May 1, 2006


Thanks SC.
posted by Dunwitty at 3:23 AM on May 1, 2006


Stephen Colbert is a force of nature as far as I'm concerned. He absolutely killed at the Correspondents' Dinner, but he was playing to an audience that was watching at home rather than to who was actually in the room. The amount of intestinal fortitude and focus needed to make it through that was utterly astonishing. Jon Stewart would likely have withered into lapdog mode (viz.: his interviews with Rick Santorum, Colin Powell and John Kerry), had he been in a similar situation.

As for his show last week, I am no fan of Bill Kristol, but he often comes off as a very intelligent, genial, measured, sensible kind of guy that just happens to believe in a completely different foreign policy paradigm than I do. Colbert made him look like a high school freshman floundering through a tryout for the varsity debate team.

I'm still marvelling at that performance. Was Kristol caught off guard just from the standpoint of being attacked from the right? Or, was it something else?
posted by psmealey at 4:29 AM on May 1, 2006


I wonder what the retaliation will be? My guess is some dick will start up a letter-writing campaign to the advertisers ...

Either that, or call in Karl for some of that patented Rovian character assassination magic he's apparently so good at ...
posted by kaemaril at 4:44 AM on May 1, 2006


>I wonder what the retaliation will be?

Either he or any company he's involved with will be audited.
posted by gsb at 4:58 AM on May 1, 2006


I'm still marvelling at that performance. Was Kristol caught off guard just from the standpoint of being attacked from the right? Or, was it something else?

Several people have mentioned this, so I watched it again (it was still on my HD). Colbert, much as I love the guy, did nothing special. He just hectored Kristol, and wouldn't let him get a word in edgewise. Kristol took it quite well, and was clearly just making a joke when he said "I'm speechless." There was no wit or skill involved.

Just like the widely divergent views of Colbert's speech in this thread -- it's truly amazing to me how people will see what they want to.

There's no hope for any of us.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:00 AM on May 1, 2006


A few good lines; the rest painfully unfunny.
posted by bwg at 5:04 AM on May 1, 2006


Several people have mentioned this, so I watched it again (it was still on my HD). Colbert, much as I love the guy, did nothing special. He just hectored Kristol, and wouldn't let him get a word in edgewise. Kristol took it quite well, and was clearly just making a joke when he said "I'm speechless." There was no wit or skill involved.

I don't know, stavros. As much as it was a parody of O'Reilley style, I don't think it was all just hot air. I think he pretty effectively cornered the guy with his own rhetoric and history of failure. He didn't let his statements go by unquestioned, but he only questioned and mocked them indirectly, which is what makes his schtick work so well. It forces the guest to actually make his case, and Kristol didn't do so well.
posted by ludwig_van at 5:14 AM on May 1, 2006


And oh yeah, Marg is great!

But I'd have loved to see Rick Mercer take a run at it.
posted by bwg at 5:18 AM on May 1, 2006


When I came to France five months ago, I wasn't that proud to be an American. I gradually became more secure with being an American, and it was easier to think of things I apreciated about home. This video makes me proud to be an American, and makes me feel like it will be o.k. to go home.
posted by Packy_1962 at 5:18 AM on May 1, 2006


I seem to recall a line from the last W.H. Correspondents Dinner closing comedy routine... something along the lines of
"It's times like these that let us come together, put down our differences, and acknowledge that we're all members of a privileged elite with a vested interest in the status quo.".
Sound familiar? Thanks Steve, regardless.
posted by anthill at 5:49 AM on May 1, 2006


The Colbert Report is mostly unwatchable.

Nah, that's the Daily Show you're thinking of.

Colbert is at his funniest, though, making fun of the media, specifically the O'Reilly/Hannity bits. And that's not partisan at all, because no one with half a brain takes those two seriously. Especially O'Reilly.
posted by dagnyscott at 5:51 AM on May 1, 2006


Metafilter to Slashdot lag time: 22 hours. Significantly faster than the usual 2-3 days. Looks like this story won't be buried any longer. In 2 more days the yahoos at work will be pointing this out to me ...
posted by intermod at 7:17 AM on May 1, 2006


How long before Cox & Forkum publish a cartoon of Colbert stabbing an American soldier to death with his forked tongue?
posted by fleetmouse at 7:30 AM on May 1, 2006


Oh no wait, make that a cartoon of Colbert watching the WTC towers collapse while Ahmenijad throws an arm around him and exclaims "congratulations!"
posted by fleetmouse at 7:36 AM on May 1, 2006


Man, Bush sure looked pissed.

My cartoon:
Colbert is bending a crying Lady Liberty over the table and stuffing papers with "ABORTION" written on them into a ballot box with one hand. Wires protrude from the ballot box and Secret Agent Bush, hiding under the table, snips them with scissors.
posted by sonofsamiam at 9:00 AM on May 1, 2006


Comedy? Well, I think Lenny Bruce is rock and rolling in his grave. On repeated viewings, those silences become less easily mistaken for jokes falling flat. What is heard in the dead spaces are the sounds of anxiety and raw fear. Most people , when it comes down to it, (myself included) avoid extreme social discomfort and confrontation.

The first analogy that came to mind, as the general audience reaction appeared to to be a group prayer of "Oh god, let this be over soon", was that of an oldest son in a dysfunctional family, with an alcoholic bully of a father, finally confronting the menacing parent while the rest of the family looks on in horror, realizing that the world as they know it is about to end.

Only in this case, those fears won't be realized since life goes on as normal.
posted by stagewhisper at 9:07 AM on May 1, 2006


Colbert was great!
I still find myself wishing Bill Hicks was around, though.
posted by kaemaril at 9:15 AM on May 1, 2006


Last night, right after I made my last comment, I figured it out..

Dog bites man isn't news, man bites dog is.

Woof!
posted by Chuckles at 9:23 AM on May 1, 2006


Yeah that Bush, funny guy. Reminds me how sad I am to have missed Pinochet's ventriloquist act and Idi Amin's fire juggling routine.
posted by dreamsign at 9:27 AM on May 1, 2006


Billmon nails it:

The problem is that the tissue of this particular lie [that the press is independent and looks out for the benefit of the governed] has been eroding ever since the Clinton impeachment, if not before, and is now worn exceedingly thin. It's becoming harder and harder to conceal the ruthlessness of the struggle for power, or ignore the consequences of losing it.

There were people at last night's dinner who really could end up in jail -- depending on Patrick Fitzgerald's theory of the case and/or the results of the next two elections. Things have been done over the past five years that can't be undone; crimes committed that can't be uncommitted. If Colbert faced a tough crowd last night, it was probably because so many of them understand that the Cheneyites and the Rovians really are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenberg, and that if the airship goes down in flames their own window seats are going to get pretty toasty. Jobs are at stake. Careers could be at stake. For all we know lives could be at stake.

It's an ugly moment, and expecting people like that to laugh at their own misfortunes isn't very realistic. I'll give Colbert major props for his political courage, but none for knowing how to please an audience. If he'd really been working the room, he would have thrown in a few step-n-fetch it Arabs, a snotty Brit and some white trash clowns ... . It wouldn't have been nearly as funny, but it might have helped the kool kids forget their sorrows, at least briefly.
posted by Relay at 9:38 AM on May 1, 2006


I don't know if it's performance art exactly, but most of what Colbert says isn't funny, what's funny is in the reaction to what he says. Some examples of what makes him near-great (so far)was (1) his ability to stymie Bill Crystal (with due respect to stav, above) by tossing Crystal's own bullshit back at him and (2) getting Tim Robbins to laugh out loud after asking him why he hates the troops.

To continue this though, in his famous segment "the Word", most of the punch lines are delivered by the crawl, rather than by Colbert himself. I don't know if this qualifies as some type of neo post-modernist comedic approach, but it can be wickedly funny, in a way that Jon Stewart's schtick (eye rubbing, "whaaaa?") really has worn a bit thin.
posted by psmealey at 9:42 AM on May 1, 2006


Colbert arrested.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:02 AM on May 1, 2006


Fox News Slams Colbert
posted by homunculus at 10:44 AM on May 1, 2006


Reading many of these "he wasn't funny" comments, I am flabbergasted. It's like seeing Jeezus walk on water and saying that he looks like a dirty hippie, or that the water turned into wine tasted too vinegarry. -Now, I know that those analogies are too grandiose, but they do well to illustrate my point...

Retards.
posted by eener at 10:55 AM on May 1, 2006


Just thought of the court jesters

Me too. Prance on, ye merrie foole. As Late Capitalism increasingly resembles the Ancien Régime, everything old is new again. It's possibly correlated with the fact that England recently appointed its first official Jester (Nigel Roder) since 1649 (ante Regicide). Let's just hope Colbert avoids the fate of Jester Archibald Armstrong.
posted by meehawl at 11:09 AM on May 1, 2006


That was really a classic dive, up there with Kaufman or Neil Hamburger.

Who could have thought inviting him was a good idea?! Have they seen Strangers With Candy?
posted by sonofsamiam at 11:11 AM on May 1, 2006


Yes it was the point. I suppose it would be OK, if Picasso just took a shit on a canvas for Guernica? Or if Stephen Spielberg filmed Schindlers List with a home video recorder and the highschool acting troop? It's the thought that counts. E for effort.

Yes, Colbert's message was amazing, and extremely laudable, but bad art is inexcusable, and art does matter. Trying to convince boring, uncultivated people of why this is, is a Sisyphean task. Dr. Spock will never understand human desire. In purely Utilitarian terms though, good art is much more powerful and convincing - to friends and enemies alike - for the same reason that elegant rhetorical prose or interpersonal charisma get the job done better. No one would care what Jesus said if he couldn't speak in front of crowds or sounded like a cloying jackass. So even if you are a Philistine with no aesthetic demands on your world, you should care a lot for purely Utilitarian reasons.

Colbert isn't living up to his comedic potential, and as a huge early fan that bothers me.

not that arguing with people who say "retards" was ever a good idea
posted by dgaicun at 11:20 AM on May 1, 2006


There is no bad art or good art. There is only interesting art and boring art. Colbert was interesting.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:31 AM on May 1, 2006


Dr. Spock will never understand human desire.

But he sure can tell us what to do with our babies.

Or did you mean Mr. Spock?
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 11:31 AM on May 1, 2006


Fire pedantic torpedoes!

dgaicun: Uh, dude? Unless you're for some bizarre reason referring to the noted pediatrician then you mean MISTER Spock. Or Ambassador Spock, Captain Spock, Spock of Vulcan or just plain Spock :)
posted by kaemaril at 11:41 AM on May 1, 2006


Hah! yeah, I've never actually seen an episode of Star Trek, a point I often wear as a badge of pride, but for once that fact actually made someone look like a dork.

Astro, you're wrong - things can be interesting without being art: newspaper editorials, armed revolution, or breaking up with your girlfriend, for instance. Colbert was interesting as an editorial or as confrontation, but less so as comedy - which, contrary to others, was the point, which is why he was obviously trying to be funny. In some part he succeeded too, but the jokes and delivery could have been better as witnessed by superior earlier roasts (e.g. Chase) where Colbert had it all down to a science. Recently his science has been breaking apart as his message is getting more serious. For others this is fine, but for me I don't understand why they have to be mutually exclusive. But apparently they aren't complementing eachother as well as they could for this particular performer.
posted by dgaicun at 11:48 AM on May 1, 2006


. Amazing. I laughed and cried. Why won't the media touch these issues in as direct and plain a way?
posted by xammerboy at 11:56 AM on May 1, 2006


Talk about missing the point.

The comedy isn't the point.

Telling the President that he has fucked up is the point.

As far as we can tell, Colbert is the first person to give Bush a much-needed kick in the balls. And, frankly, the first person to give the assembled media pinheads a kick in the balls.

There is nothing funny about what the US Administration has done.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:05 PM on May 1, 2006


Swift who?
posted by Smedleyman at 12:08 PM on May 1, 2006



posted by EarBucket at 12:31 PM on May 1, 2006


It's not worth it to me to bloviate interminably about how I know what is and isn't funny (although I could conceivably make an argument that I have more expertise than most). What I can say, however, even at this late date, is that I watched this clip with more than half a dozen people (who admittedly lean towards the middle or a bit left, but not the right). To a one, our reactions started with peals of laughter and concluded with exclamations of admiration for Mr. Colbert's bravery. YMMV, obviously.
posted by Sinner at 12:34 PM on May 1, 2006


It gets even funnier on repeated viewings. I didn't catch all the jokes the first time, they are packed in pretty tight, between the horrified silences...

oh, oh, wait he told a race joke! It's safe to laugh!
posted by sonofsamiam at 12:46 PM on May 1, 2006


Yes, Colbert's message was amazing, and extremely laudable, but bad art is inexcusable, and art does matter.

but to judge art, one must take into account the intentions of the artist ... if he was trying to do a successful comedy routine, he failed ... if he was trying to embarrass the president and the press, he succeeded admirably

and embarrassing people IS an art ... he created an awkward social and political situation in front of a million viewers ... and i'm pretty sure that's exactly what he intended to do
posted by pyramid termite at 12:52 PM on May 1, 2006


oh, oh, wait he told a race joke! It's safe to laugh!

I noticed this on second viewing as well, he'd go [brutal, cutting joke] which would get very little response and follow with a racial joke which would get open laughter from the room, like he was exposing the crowd's biases for the viewer at home.
posted by Space Coyote at 12:56 PM on May 1, 2006


Colbert made the audience the joke. If you don't get that, you missed it. Watch it again.
posted by dreamsign at 1:11 PM on May 1, 2006


This really made my day. My first reaction when my husband IMed me with the story was, "Is that actually true?" I'm so glad it is.

Thanks for the 60 minutes footage link!
posted by Kimberly at 1:35 PM on May 1, 2006


"My sense is that the blogosphere response is more evidence of a new Stalinist aesthetic on the left--until recently more common on the right--wherein the political content of a performance or work of art is actually more important than its entertainment value. Jon Stewart often says he hates when his audience cheers; he wants them to laugh. My sense is that, had most of the bloggers complaining about the WHCD been around Saturday night, there would have been lots of cheering but not much more laughing."
- Noam Sheiber

I just thought that was an interesting perspective. I was entertained by the discomfort present in the room.
posted by mania at 1:47 PM on May 1, 2006


Look it's easy: think of the way he conducts his 'interviews' with congressmen and women on almost every one of his shows. 'The fightin' '17th!'

I think those bits are hit and miss (mostly hit), and sometimes squirmily uncomfortable when the congresstooge isn't in on it.

Write that large for this speech. I thought it was pitch perfect, but, like I said at the beginning of this long thread, people rarely agree on the funny. Doesn't matter.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:48 PM on May 1, 2006


Your animated gif was funny, what happened to it.
posted by dgaicun at 1:51 PM on May 1, 2006


I kind of felt like what Colbert was really saying was much simplier. "Mister President, you may think we're stupid and easily pliable with fear, but we're well aware of what's going on in the world and in our country. We're not quite as stupid as you and Dick and Karl think we are. And not nearly as afraid as you want us to be."
posted by smallerdemon at 1:52 PM on May 1, 2006


I want the term 'backwash' in reference to the remaining loyalists to stick.
posted by Space Coyote at 1:58 PM on May 1, 2006


The joke he flubbed was actually one of the funnier ones. Should have been:

"Now I know critics are looking at these 32% approval ratings and are trying to convince us the glass is half empty. No. No. The glass is not half empty. [pause] The glass is two-thirds empty. [pause] Whatever. Whatever. My point is that there's still some water in there, still some water in there. [pause] I wouldn't drink it though. [pause] Last third is usually backwash."

Anyway, the speech definitely had its brilliant comedic moments.
posted by dgaicun at 2:22 PM on May 1, 2006


I was just going to post a comment about how the 60 Minutes interview is pretty much a puff piece, considering how Viacom owns both CBS and Comedy Central, but the disclaimer at the bottom of this page explains that Viacom and CBS Corp. became two separate entities at the end of last year.
posted by emelenjr at 3:03 PM on May 1, 2006


Anyone see V for Vendetta? I'm scared for colbert's life. What happens when a bad administration is ridiculed?
posted by filmgeek at 3:32 PM on May 1, 2006


From this week's Time Magazine cover story -- TIME 100: The People Who Shape Our World:
"Stephen Colbert -- What's So Funny About This Guy?" by NBC Nightly News' Brian Williams.
posted by ericb at 3:35 PM on May 1, 2006


Ah, it had to happen.
Check this out: http://thankyoustephencolbert.org/ 2666 thank you's and still counting.
Very cool.
posted by Surfurrus at 10:11 PM PST on April 30


Up to 13445 as of now, and by my count, someone's leaving a new one about every three seconds. Mr. Colbert's hit a nerve.
posted by EarBucket at 4:30 PM on May 1, 2006


I just hit refresh twice on that site, exactly 30 seconds apart.
First refresh : 14,085.
Second refresh : 14,119

Impressive.
posted by kaemaril at 5:15 PM on May 1, 2006


When the Fourth Estate cops out, thank GOD the Fifth Estate is comedy.
posted by jeanmari at 5:17 PM on May 1, 2006


16,852 Responses and growing.
posted by ericb at 7:55 PM on May 1, 2006


He is very funny. Makes me want to buy a tv....
posted by ParisParamus at 8:08 PM on May 1, 2006


Your animated gif was funny, what happened to it.

Here is it again, hosted on my own server. I didn't make it, btw.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:29 PM on May 1, 2006


Fucking brilliant, Colbert has pure steel balls.

Bill Hicks & Lenny Bruce woulda been proud.

We live in strange, scary times.
posted by dbiedny at 9:51 PM on May 1, 2006


Jon Stewart: "We've never been prouder of him, but HOLY SHIT!"
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:02 AM on May 2, 2006


could we think of a better detournment than this, at this point in time?
posted by eustatic at 1:52 AM on May 2, 2006


stavros, that's just about the only appropriate response Stewart could give.

It's just about the only response I could give, come to think of it.
posted by JHarris at 9:11 AM on May 2, 2006


US News Reports:
Comedy Central star Stephen Colbert's biting routine at the White House Correspondents Association dinner won a rare silent protest from Bush aides and supporters Saturday when several independently left before he finished.

"Colbert crossed the line," said one top Bush aide, who rushed out of the hotel as soon as Colbert finished. Another said that the president was visibly angered by the sharp lines that kept coming.

"I've been there before, and I can see that he is [angry]," said a former top aide. "He's got that look that he's ready to blow.
posted by Staggering Jack at 9:16 AM on May 2, 2006


Mission accomplished.
posted by cairnish at 10:18 AM on May 2, 2006


If other talking-head comedians/hosts/etc would jump on the bandwagon and start speaking the truth, I wonder if Bush would go over the edge, and what that might look like.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:34 AM on May 2, 2006


The Bushies' philosophy is that they create their own reality, and the press have been complicit, no big surprise. We need to reclaim reality. Thank you Stephen Colbert, I hope you have inspired more to do the same. It is amazing how those convoluted sentences, on the Report and in his speech, unerringly cut straight to the heart of the matter, whatever it happens to be.

I had a trainee english teacher in high school who assigned us to write political satire a la P J O'Rourke, and I wrote mine from a very liberal perspective. His comments were that my piece was "too angry." I don't know why he assigned satire if he didn't want biting, although I was well aware he was a conservative. Satire without anger is just parody. Stephen Colbert is far more than just an imitator.
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 11:17 AM on May 2, 2006


and what that might look like.

Oh how I would have loved to see Bush throw something or scream.

In flipping briefly through the channels today, CNN was doing their own little piece making fun of the whole "I'm a Decider" thing. It was, of course, a fluff piece, but it's definitely a departure from irrational lavish praise of everthing the man does.

I sense a tide change.
posted by odinsdream at 1:19 PM on May 2, 2006


I thought it was funny and very uncomfortable. Funny like sharp satire, not funny like a lampoon. The audience reaction, though, was no indication of whether or not it was funny. If you watch his whole piece, the audience loves it until he starts satirizing them (when he talks about photo-ops he's talking about the press as well, and that's when he starts to lose them). He was just as harsh to the press as he was to Bush, it's no surprise that the press stopped laughing.
posted by OmieWise at 1:30 PM on May 2, 2006


Here's a good article on the Colbert Blackout
posted by Staggering Jack at 1:35 PM on May 2, 2006


An MTV News article with more detail on the press reception...
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 3:46 PM on May 2, 2006


Apparently the press is ignoring Colbert's performance because they like him and want to protect him from bad publicity.
posted by kirkaracha at 3:57 PM on May 2, 2006


Wow. Ballsy. Challenging. And it's getting some people thinking and talking so it served the purpose better than a lot of news stories.
posted by raedyn at 4:18 PM on May 2, 2006


Thirty thousand thank you's. It's kind of fascinating the way every other comment is about Stephen's giant balls. Maybe this will finish off the "liberals are effete wimps" meme.
posted by EarBucket at 5:15 PM on May 2, 2006


Look-Alike Beats Bush
A new poll shows that the majority of Americans prefer an imposter to the actual president.
posted by ericb at 5:41 PM on May 2, 2006


NYT finally gives Colbert some ink.
posted by caddis at 4:39 AM on May 3, 2006


"I'm a big Stephen Colbert fan, a huge Bush detractor, and I think the White House press corps has been out to lunch for much of the last five years," Noam Scheiber wrote by way of introduction on the New Republic's Web site. But a few lines later he said: "I laughed out loud maybe twice during Colbert's entire 20-odd minute routine. Colbert's problem, blogosphere conspiracy theories notwithstanding, is that he just wasn't very entertaining.
Scheiber needs to get over himself. "Blogosphere conspiracy theories"??? Hey, Noam, we all watched it!! I don't doubt that the self-inflated jerks in the lapdog press corps and the toadies in the administration didn't find it funny, that was obvious, but personally, I thought Colbert killed. I had at least 6 full-on belly laughs during his bit, and quite a few more chuckles.
posted by psmealey at 5:01 AM on May 3, 2006


BTW, has Andy Borowitz ever made anyone, anywhere laugh?
posted by psmealey at 5:07 AM on May 3, 2006


Colbert's problem. . . is that he just wasn't very entertaining.

Bush went in there thinking he had a lock on poking fun of himself. Colbert one up'd him. That's entertainment; it was brilliant.
posted by Feisty at 10:21 AM on May 3, 2006


George Bush does not respect the lives of innocent people, does not respect the Constitution of his own country, does not respect the laws of his own country, does not respect the rights or safety of his own people, does not respect the image of his own people in the eyes of the rest of the world, and does not respect the trust placed in him as the premier representative of the United States.

I don't see why anyone is wasting a second caring about whether Colbert was "disrespectful" to Bush, or even whether he was funny. There is nothing inherently funny about what he was trying to get across to the President; and there is certainly nothing funny about George Bush himself. That Bush should be joking around like the average dick-head frat boy at this point in history is beyond appalling.

What Colbert did was one of the most important things to happen to the President, and to public political discourse, in recent memory.
posted by Nicholas West at 10:51 AM on May 3, 2006


37074 Responses to “Thank You.”

I thought it was funny, pointed satire. Since the press was one of the main targets, I'm not surprised they're trying to ignore it.
posted by cell divide at 11:29 AM on May 3, 2006


Colbert's entire dinner report in a single link.
posted by humbe at 1:44 PM on May 3, 2006


All the Correspondent's dinner segments seem to have disappeared from YouTube. Anyone know what's up?
posted by maryh at 2:44 PM on May 3, 2006


This video has been removed due to copyright infringement.

Oh, okay. But CSPAN is okay with leaving the Bush doppelganger segment. Yup.
posted by maryh at 3:02 PM on May 3, 2006


Oh, some of the Bush twin videos have been removed too, now.

Someone remixed it with alternating segments, Bush V. Colbert, wonder if that will be removed too.
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 4:35 PM on May 3, 2006


Ok, I just watched the Bush Twins bit.

Is your President mentally retarded? 'cause to judge by that video, he must be.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:55 PM on May 3, 2006


Incidentally, notes, balloons, flowers, or any other tokens of appreciation can be sent to:

Stephen Colbert
c/o The Colbert Report
513 West 54th Street
New York, NY 10019

It might be nice to let him know how we feel.
posted by EarBucket at 6:11 PM on May 3, 2006


The podcast Open Source just did a show yesterday on Colbert's appearance and the resulting lack of mainstream coverage.
[page has summary and link to a 24MB, 52 minute MP3]
posted by blueberry at 6:35 PM on May 3, 2006


The Fool and the Knave
posted by homunculus at 9:08 PM on May 3, 2006


Oh barf, so now Colbert is a rude bully.

Richard Cohen says, "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."
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 9:23 PM on May 3, 2006


Oh and,

"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."
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 9:24 PM on May 3, 2006


From overanxious ducksqueezer's link:

"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."

My god, that is absolutely rich. I assume Cohen, who claims to be familiar with Colbert's show, realizes that the character Colbert plays is a parody of Fox-style rightwing blowhards who cast themselves as courageous, patriotic wits. If the character is apalling, that's the piont. Does Cohen see a comedian when he looks at O'Reilly or Coulter, and a bully when he looks at Colbert? Time to get your eyes checked, Magoo.
posted by maryh at 9:51 PM on May 3, 2006


Is your President mentally retarded? 'cause to judge by that video, he must be.

We believe in equal opportunity employment for the mentally impaired. Haliburton and Walmart wouldn't have him, where else was he supposed to work?
posted by IronLizard at 10:02 PM on May 3, 2006


Salan is taking the opportunity to give the mainstream media another kick in the balls:
Lapdogs
Cowardly and clueless, the U.S. media abandoned its post as Bush led the country into a disastrous war. A look inside one of the great journalistic collapses of our time
posted by five fresh fish at 10:48 PM on May 3, 2006


Richard Cohen says, "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."

Yeah?

And Relay sez: "Bite my crank Cohen!"
posted by Relay at 11:27 PM on May 3, 2006


I hope the new media1 keeps up the pressure because we need to hold the old media accountable. (Colbert's honestly not famous enough to warrant much of their attention.)

Colbert got to say face to face what a whole lot of us in the new media have been shouting about for ages: the failure of our old media to provide the public with investigative insight into the operation of our governments has resulted in our having governments that are so corrupt and incompetent that it's killing us.

Colbert is a hero: he mocked the Emporer's New Clothes and called 2 000 members of the old media onto the carpet for having been liars about it all along. He told the naked truth.

Take it to the mat, new media. Seventy percent of the nation is online and most of them are pissed about the way things have been going. Let's kick a hole in the darkness.

my definition of new media: most everything that's made it possible for us common sort of folk to communicate with the masses; ranging from the freebie community tabloids in big cities, to old-school BBSes, to all internet-enabled technologies. MetaFilter is new media.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:41 PM on May 3, 2006


that cohen piece is insane.

does he really think that declaring he is a "funny guy" will establish same? that he got called on in school to say something funny -- that's his credential?

amazing.
posted by Hat Maui at 1:13 AM on May 4, 2006


Cohen:
"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.

Mixed freakin' metaphor? This guy claims to be funny?
posted by brundlefly at 1:29 AM on May 4, 2006


New York Times White House correspondent Elisabeth Bumiller defended the press corps' timid behavior: "I think we were very deferential because ... it's live, it's very intense, it's frightening to stand up there. Think about it, you' re standing up on prime-time live TV asking the president of the United States a question when the country's about to go to war," she told students at Towson University in Maryland. "There was a very serious, somber tone that evening, and no one wanted to get into an argument with the president at this very serious time."

So she's basically saying the press corps can't handle the stress? Great.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 4:21 AM on May 4, 2006


PST - apparently they're in the wrong profession. =)
posted by raedyn at 9:25 AM on May 4, 2006


From Lapdogs:

"But when readers delved deeper into the story, Miller's account became more peculiar as she revealed that she had no independent confirmation on any of the information; it was all relayed to her by MET Alpha commanders. That's because Miller was never told the scientist's name, she could not confirm he was a scientist, she was not allowed to interview him, and she was not allowed to visit his home. She was, however, allowed to look at him, from a distance, and watch as he "pointed to several spots in the sand where he said chemical precursors and other weapons material were buried." Additionally, Miller agreed not to write about the scientist and his claims for three days while military officials read over her story and okayed it for publication. In other words, military officials provided Miller with a string of exclusive and extraordinary WMD revelations via the scientist. Miller then typed the information up and military officials double-checked it to make sure she got everything right. The next day, appearing on PBS, Miller hyped the scientist's story even harder, suggesting he was better than a "smoking gun" of Saddam's WMD arsenal. To Miller, the alleged scientist was "a silver bullet in the form of a person." (Reporter James Moore noted that during the same PBS appearance Miller referred to scientists, plural, whom the MET Alpha team had found; her article referred only to a single mysterious scientist.)"

No wonder this lady got a Pulitzer. She was already doing journalism Colbert-style. And she's working on a book, now, I hear.
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 9:52 AM on May 4, 2006


Wow. YouTube is LOADED with copyrighted stuff, but Colbert is removed? HA!
posted by cell divide at 10:02 AM on May 4, 2006


Dan Froomkin, Washington Post:
"It's worth looking at where Colbert was coming from. His show, of course, is a spin-off from Jon Stewart's Daily Show on Comedy Central. Both Colbert and Stewart have risen to superstar status largely by calling (how can I put it here?) baloney on the Bush administration -- and on the press corps that transmits said baloney without the appropriate skepticism or irony.

Their very subversive message, at its core: That this Bush guy is basically a joke. And that the mainstream press is a joke, because it takes Bush at his word. ....

The way I see it, the Washington press corps is still appropriately embarrassed that they screwed up in the run-up to war. Now, as Bush's approval ratings fester, they are getting bolder in challenging the official White House line on any number of issues. They're justifiably proud of a handful of great investigative pieces.

But they still haven't addressed the central issue Colbert was raising: Bush's credibility. As it happens, the public is way ahead of them on this one: For more than a year, the polls have consistently been showing that a majority of Americans don't find Bush honest and trustworthy."
posted by ericb at 4:23 PM on May 4, 2006


Yes, ericb, I think that perfectly describes the situation. The public is way ahead of the press on this. Hence the increased disdain for the press. We look to them as sort of the soldiers in the war to keep the government honest. They went MIA for the past few years. No one loves a coward. It's not like they don't see what the rest of us see. They just can't find a way to say it and maintain their honor in the face of their dereliction in duty for the past few years. They are pretty much traitors to the democracy and know it.
posted by caddis at 6:00 PM on May 4, 2006




Ahahahahaha thank you, I needed to see that.
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 10:02 PM on May 4, 2006


Wow. That was a completely different sense of satisfaction--perhaps a little meaner, but just as entertaining.
posted by EarBucket at 3:53 AM on May 5, 2006


shots of Bush's reactions throughout Colbert's thing

Wow, when you're president you're allowed to pinch off a loaf right there at the banquet table!
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 4:19 AM on May 5, 2006


Heh, those shots of Bush seem to be par for the course... I imagine that's the look on his face any time he's presented with a challenging thought, like thinking about the minimum amount of work required to appear functional at any point in time during his daily routine.

I didn't really think about it much at first, but upon reviewing the video it seems the "Bush Double" has a shit-ton of makeup on. Sure enough, there's some interviews with him out recently... here's an image of him next to the president, sans-makeup.

I'm imagining his selection had less to do with any particular talents and more to do with furthering the image of the president as a down to earth, affable fellow. Judging by the amount of prosthetics and makeup required it might as well have been anyone... the only prerequisite is you enjoy acting like the most spoiled frat boy in history.
posted by prostyle at 8:50 AM on May 5, 2006




...which made Bush look like a smashed toadstool and the American press look like the compost a mushroom grows in.

What a clumsy, clumsy way of phrasing it. But unique, I'll grant her that.

Hey, get this:

[TDS & CR] runs here on the Comedy Network; the two shows have more viewers in Canada than they do in the States, but Stewart and Colbert are U.S. cult hits.

Well, I'm one Canuck who's among the faithful. TDS and CR are humour shows in much the same vein as This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Air Farce, Dead Dog Cafe, The Newsroom, and so on. We Canucks seriously love our political and social satire!
posted by five fresh fish at 2:12 PM on May 5, 2006


Five days and still pumping.

May I now apologize for spelling Stephen's name wrong? (I was pretty excited when I first posted the links.)

BTW, I probably found this story first simply by being in the 'last timezone' of the US ... Cspan was showing the event at 5 pm here - live. ( hmmm ... maybe I am just being defensive about the what kind of loser is home on a Saturday night watching C-SPAN? comments!)

Anyway, I have been reading every link here and am in love with mefi's part in the collaborative creation of this wave (tsunami) of REAL news.

Mahalo all!
posted by Surfurrus at 3:47 PM on May 5, 2006


I thought that was interesting, too, fff. Though it bothers me somewhat. Lends it an air of anti-Americanism that it probably has nothing to do with. As you say, we like our satire.
posted by dreamsign at 5:57 PM on May 5, 2006


In the comments section of Yahoo's Buzz Log for Sunday the 7th, I noticed some of the pro-administration posters were claiming that Bush thought the whole thing was big laffs and great fun, although anyone with eyes might not have gotten that impression from watching the actual footage. I'm wondering if this is the new Republican meme? Because as damage control, it's just... uh, not so good. Kind of pathetic, in fact.
posted by maryh at 2:03 PM on May 7, 2006




the google video is unwatchable it's buffering so much or whatever. but it plays great here
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 8:01 PM on May 11, 2006




Holy crap.
posted by EarBucket at 3:53 PM on May 24, 2006


DeLay is much much stupider than we thought--they all are---check out Hastert
posted by amberglow at 4:21 PM on May 24, 2006


It occurs to me to wonder if perhaps the reason no elected officials are raising a helluva stink about corruption1 is that they are all guilty as sin.

1I mean, shit, by now I'd be so raving mad that I'd be on every news show and talk show on television demanding that these assholes be caught and shot!
posted by five fresh fish at 6:06 PM on May 24, 2006


err... are there any politicians who are howling mad about how the corruption? why aren't they in world headlines?
posted by five fresh fish at 6:08 PM on May 24, 2006


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