The Czar really wanted to avoid commenting on anything like this (it is a bit... AM radio fodder, perhaps), but sees that the war between Sarah Palin and David Letterman is heating up.
By now, you already know what happened. Sarah Palin and her daughter made a trip to New York and did some sightseeing. Ever topical, Letterman made a joke about it in his monologue, except that it involved a blatantly sexual situation regarding the younger Palin being in New York. Many folks, especially the Palins, objected because the younger Ms. Palin is only 14 years old. Letterman scrambled to point out the joke was targeted at daughter Bristol Palin, who is 18. But because Bristol was not on the New York trip, the Palins retorted, he clearly meant Willow, and that constitutes a joke about statutory rape. Letterman refused to apologize, but did (in a very wink-wink fashion) attempt to clarify he would never joke about such a thing, and regrets confusing folks.
And now, where the Czar gets involved is when New York State Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb sent a letter to Les Moonves (CEO of CBS) demanding that Letterman be fired for this.
Okay, folks, its like this.
Did Letterman know the daughter in question was Willow? No, evidently not: but rather than admit the truththat they took a cheap shot at Sarah Palin without bothering to check what the circumstances of her trip was (that is, that she was touring with Willow, not Bristol)they stuck to a particularly transparent excuse that we goofed up, not his writers.
Did Letterman seriously intend to joke about statutory rape as something funny per se? No, he seems to be a pretty mellow guy off camera.
Should Letterman be fired for this? The Czar believes not, for one would have to be pretty naive to think this was out of line for Letterman. The Czar is no fan of Lettermanfrankly, his show is a grotesquely over-extended shadow of what it was on NBC circa 1985-1988, and succeeds purely on its own formulaic momentum...and perhaps should have been Ol Yellered to a tree in 1994but knows full well that late-night comedy typically features off-color jokes and political potshots. To pretend this is the worst joke he has told, or that we havent laughed at worse, is a painful stretch not worth making.
Should Sarah Palin accept his invitation to come onto the show and discuss it? No, and indeed, she has refused; she correctly acknowledges that doing so would provide badly needed ratings for Letterman, and she would wind up being the victim of further ridicule for his hooting sycophants. Take the high road, Ms. Palin: make him crawl to you.
But there are some thoughts that keep haunting the Czar.
If George W. Bush made a similar jokesay, that a Hispanic ball player raped a 14-year-old daughter of Nancy Pelosi, what would the result be? Does this pass the Czars George Bush test? Most assuredly not: CNN would be in its 55th straight hour of coverage on this, and Letterman himself would reference it on his show, about how people cannot make something funny out of that. Still, nearly all the coverage on this has been heavily buried. Even on CBSs own website, the only reference to it is the winking pseudo-clarification video under the title The Best of Letterman. Yikes. Thats his best? Guess it has been a while since he was funny.
Second, why make the original joke at all? Assuming we all bought into the idea that Letterman was referring to the absent Bristol, why is that any funnier? Because network television thinks Sarah Palin is funny, and that any horrific attack on her and her family is perfectly all right becauseto call it for how they see itany Republican woman is an idiot. The fact that she was more qualified to be President than Obama or H. Clinton combined (and possibly John McCain!) is too great a threat to liberal thinking to be considered. Remember, an intelligent woman who thinks for herself contradicts liberal notions about Republicans completely. Right, Condi? Therefore, she must be destroyed.
Certainly it wasnt limited to Letterman: remember the SNL sketch that Todd Palin of incest? Thought not, for that outrage was hushed up as well.
The bottom line is this: Hollywood-oriented comedy (movies, television, cable, etc.) is still absolutely horrified with Sarah Palin and still maintains a merciless fatwa against her. She represents something ugly and alien to them, and they fear that she will be there in 2010 and 2012 to destroy their mindset. If that means humiliating her and terrorizing her family, that is exactly what they will do.
Obama: 'No Problem' With NSA Programs, Syria Policy 'Consistent Throughout' http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/351332/obama-no-problem-nsa-programs-syria-policy-consistent-throughout-will-allenIn a lengthy interview with PBS's Charlie Rose, President Obama strongly defended the recently revealed National Security Agency surveillance programs, but said a "national conversation" over concerns of privacy and security is necessary. He laid out a way in which the government could abuse the NSA's data-gathering on American citizens, allowing, "all of that is true -- except for the fact that, for the government under the program right now to do that, it would be illegal." The president characterized his recent decision to begin sending arms to the Syrian rebels as "consistent with my policy throughout" the conflict, and laid out his rationale for the new tactics -- confirmed evidence of chemical-weapons use and greater knowledge of the opposition changed his mind, he said. Among the few points on which Rose pressed his interviewee was the question of whether the limited American support for the rebellion will be sufficient to achieve victory -- which the president brushed off with a disparaging allusion to the Iraq War: The conversation, taped on the eve of the president's departure for the G8 summit in Northern Ireland, chiefly covered foreign-policy topics, from the Iranian election to the Syrian civil war to Obama's recent meeting with Chinese leader Xi Jinping. The president used the final minutes of the interview to promise a renewed focus on income inequality, calling it "the issue that led me to run for president in the first place." The full interview is available here. ]]> Tue, 18 Jun 2013 02:48:27 -0400 Will Allen 351332
35 minutes ago