Monday, December 26, 2016

Sunday Morning Comin' Down

"Whom the Gods Would Destroy They Would First Make Management" Edition.

Christmas Sunday, 2016.  A dark time in America when Fox News and Fox News-lite corporations turned their cameras over to freak show of Christopath Falwells --
JERRY FALWELL, JR.:  No. I just saw in Mr. Trump someone who really loved the American people, who was for the working man, the common man. I saw that early on. He spoke at Liberty in 2012, as well. So I've gotten to know him over the years. And I just really believed it -- it was sort of a gamble because I didn't know where he'd come down on all the issues, but I -- because I believed he was a good man, I believed he would come down on the right side of the issues and he's done that in the last year. And I've been proud of him and I -- I just think it’s -- it was a -- like I said, it was a big risk for me, but so much was at stake, I couldn't afford to stay silent.

...And so all those things, he just -- they just resounded with evangelicals and with Christians. And -- and my wife's noticed since she's done her Christmas shopping this year, that more of the retailers are saying "merry Christmas." There's a new hope, an optimism. There's a -- there’s a good spirit in America and I think that's -- I think that's coming from his lead.

FALWELL: Well, I think each state, of course, is going to make their own decision on that. But if you follow that -- that logic to its -- to its conclusion, does that mean that men will be able to play on women's basketball teams? I mean you -- you have to draw a line somewhere. And I think -- I think the concern of the North Carolina legislature is that men, women, and children are -- I mean, sorry, that women and children are protected from men coming into women's shower rooms...
-- deviant Gingriches --
NEWT GINGRICH: I'll be planning and trying to focus on the things I think are strategically the most important for the administration.

CHRIS WALLACE: And has President Trump, President-elect Trump given you that charter --

GINGRICH: We've talked about it several times. I suspect I'll get a letter from him once he's president. But I think my access is fairly overwhelming. And my ability to reach across the House and Senate and governors and state legislators -- I mean, we have a whole system here. That's the nature of the American system. And you know, my first big step toward this will be a series of speeches at Heritage on Trumpism and what is Trumpism and probably a book in the late spring. But that's because there are 4,000 federal employees who are brand new, eager people.

They need to understand how different Trump is and that is not just a personality quirk. It is a way of thinking and a way of doing business. And it's learnable, but it is very different from what we've seen in the past.

WALLACE: What's going on here with President Obama?

GINGRICH: I think President Obama is beginning to figure out that his legacy is like one of those dolls that as the air comes out of it, it shrinks and shrinks and shrinks.

And at 60 percent or 70 percent of his executive orders, almost all of which will be repudiated by Trump. The things he's done this week can be turned around. It takes a little bit of legalized -- I mean, the smart lawyers, but they'll turn it around.

And he's in this desperate frenzy. What he's actually doing is he’s setting up a series of things to distract Trump which will make his liberal allies feel good about Democrats and hate Republicans when Trump rolls them all back.

But I think, you know, he's right, the movie "Lincoln" has an extraordinary moment where Lincoln says, look, we have to have a constitutional amendment ending slavery because we have to lock it into the Constitution or it could be repealed. I think had Obama understood the centrality of that to the American system, he would have passed a very different Obamacare in a bipartisan basis. He would have done many other things. He would have been a more limited president, but his legacy would have lasted far longer.
-- petty hustlers Domenechs --
BEN DOMENECH: John Adams said that you would never congratulate a friend on winning the office of the presidency. I think that could be playing into this a bit. But, really, I think that what's going on the left now is an archetype of what happened to Ivanka Trump this past week, someone yelling at her on a plane that your father is ruing the country.

He hasn't even taken office yet. He hasn't done anything yet. I think the left is still dealing with whiplash from this election. And a lot of the people who are under President Obama haven't woken up yet.

WALLACE: Let me incidentally say, that was the height of the bad manners and I’m glad those guys got kicked off the plane. You know what? Somebody's traveling on a plane, leave them alone.

DOMENECH: Exactly.
and cyborg-sent-from-the-future-to-destroy-America Hewittses.
HUGH HEWITT: ... I was standing next to Katy on the floor of Cleveland when he gave his speech and he brought up the Supreme Court. Biggest applause line. The biggest Christmas present that will unify the conservatives and the Republicans will be his Supreme Court appointment. And I think he's going to deliver. So I think he's becoming a conservative. He isn't one. But he's becoming one because there's a lot of payoff there.
In earlier days, we on the Left would often turn to Mr. Stephen Colbert to cast a little light against such darkness, but those days appear to be all but over.

On Face the Nation, the affable Mr. Colbert made it clear that he is no longer the implacable genius with a fiery sword and his own show on basic cable.  After his years of invaluable service, Mr. Colbert has gone to his earthly reward and is now a marquee employee at CBS -- an American commercial broadcast television network that is "a flagship property of CBS Corporation" managed by Mr. Les Moonves: a man with clear priorities...
Leslie Moonves on Donald Trump: "It May Not Be Good for America, but It's Damn Good for CBS"
And clearly Mr. Colbert has gotten the fucking memo that even token Liberalism is no longer welcome on American corporate broadcast teevee and as CBS marquee employee, he is expected to tell jokes, leave the news and opinion business to the news and opinion department, and walk the fucking line.  Even so, it was genuinely shocking and sad to see the guy who stood toe-to-toe with George W. Bush in front of God and everybody tie himself into verbal knots trying to reconcile the observable reality that the GOP has gone mad with the imperative that, while he is playing for Team Moonves, he maintain a public persona as insipidly Both Siderist as Matthew Dowd or Ron Fournier.
COLBERT:  ... And I was really reminded of how our happiness really comes from our individual relationships. A nation is not its politics. A nation is its relationships between its people. And I was thankful for the people in the room. I was thankful for the people who were not there and could not be there because they were gone. And -- and I was thankful for the children who were -- who were growing up beautifully into people that I would want to be with and could entrust our country to. And -- and for the people that I don’t agree with, you know, politically. I’m thankful for them, as well.

COLBERT: Dividing into teams is great if your team wins. But if your team loses, it allows you to do two things. One is question why you lost. And, B, why did you choose to be on a team, because the team itself is an illusion...

COLBERT: ... So anyway, at the very end of it, one of the things that occurred to me to say was that it makes me question picking sides, because if you look at this like a -- a sport, if you look at it like as a battle against your neighbor, you’ll choose anything as a knife against the other side. And that itself is a -- what’s the opposite of a virtue?


COLBERT: Yes, that’s right. That’s a vice, political divisiveness is a vice. But like a lot of vices, super seductive.


COLBERT: And so you indulge in it until it bites you and then you go oh, darn -- oh, darn, the wages of sin is death. And it makes you question having indulged in the vice.  And I think that political divisiveness is a vice, picking sides is a vice rather than picking ideas.
But here is where Mr. Colbert gets into trouble:
COLBERT: Well, that’s the interesting thing. It’s not like many years ago, I coined this word called truthiness about how -- preferring to believe what feels true to you rather than what you know the facts to be, but to very importantly say that you know the facts to be and then there’s post-truth, which is not associated with the facts. As a matter of fact, one of Trump’s surrogates, Scottie Nell Hughes, said that facts don’t matter anymore, that there are no facts. That’s truly in a whole new world.

That’s -- that’s before God said let there be light. That’s absolute chaos. And that scares me, the idea that facts don’t exist anymore is actually scary to me, whereas if there are no facts anymore, then there is nothing to agree upon and so we can’t agree. You can’t build anything.
Because Reality is where the rubber meets the road.  And sorry, Mr. Colbert, but one fucking team believes in this simple, immutable fact, and the other team does not believe that "rubber" or "road" exist at all ... unless Donald Trump says they do in which case "rubber" and "road" exist solely due to the personal intervention and awesomeness of Donald Trump ... until he decides they no longer exist with which time they will go back to nonexistence in the doublethink pudding that one team has instead of brains.

This sort of thing used to really bother Mr. Stephen Colbert.

Or maybe it never did?

Maybe the maybe the brilliant, thoughtful, compassionate "Stephen Colbert" was every bit an audience-pleasing artifice -- a role to be played and then discarded when it was no longer useful -- as the Conservative blowhard "Stephen Colbert" character he portrayed on teevee for so many years.

A role that he was permitted to reprise con mucho gusto on his network teevee show --

-- before 1109 changed everything.

And now that we are careening headlong and headless into the Age of Trump?
COLBERT: I’m not going to say no to the president of the United States. I want want to know that I could interview him in a way that would be respectful, though, because I don’t think it would be fun for me or profitable for him in any way, or the audience, if I couldn’t do it in a respectful way and I think -- I think probably by the time he gets into office, I’ll have calmed down a little bit, because that would be important to me, because I believe in the presidency and I believe in our system and -- and, you know, when I had him on at the beginning of the year, I went to great pains to try to be respectful to him, which really upset some of my liberal fans.

But it’s important to me to have a politician on and to allow them to be able to say what their -- their -- their thoughts are and not be some sort of, you know, what -- what people often wanted me to be at the old show, which is some sort of ninja word assassin that slips underneath everybody’s radar and then slaps the handle on the knife before they even know that it’s between their ribs.

Like that -- that was sort of the legend of -- but I almost never did it. It was almost by accident when I would do it. And I don’t really want to do that with my guests ever.
Now Mr. Stephen Colbert is no longer the implacable genius with a fiery sword and his own show on basic cable. 

Now Mr. Stephen Colbert is a marquee employee at CBS -- an American commercial broadcast television network that is "a flagship property of CBS Corporation" managed by Mr. Les Moonves.

And whom the Gods would destroy they would first make Management.

And that's the Word.


Cirze said...

A fine argument, but I fail to see that he is management. He's just (now) a very careful not-to-violate-company-expectations employee.

And not that long-term an employee so he better tread carefully.

Mark Dobrowolski said...

Colbert, I am not impressed

Neo Tuxedo said...

Before Dennis Miller lost the rest of his mind*, he said something we would all do well to remember:

"Now, I may currently appear to have power, but if you really think about it, I'm just a mindless fuck-chimp for HBO. At any moment, they could back up a costume van, pull out the Pillsbury Doughboy suit, and order me into it, and then what? Well, nothin' says good lovin' like something from the oven... tee-hee-hee... that's what."

(* I bought The Rants and Ranting Again. I saw I Rant, Therefore I Am on a chain bookstore shelf, started reading, got to where he flat-out called Bill Clinton a rapist, and wrote him off as a lost cause. And I'm pretty sure that was before 9/11 drove him off the deep end.)