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The Politics of Humor

By Chris Cillizza
In politics, as in life, there is a fine line between stupid and clever -- to paraphrase the great philosopher (and lead vocalist of Spinal Tap) David St. Hubbins.

The question percolating in Washington as a new week starts is whether comedian Wanda Sykes's shots at conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh at the White House Correspondents Dinner were the former, the latter or somewhere in between.

Sykes, who provided the comic relief at the annual gathering of politicians and the reporters who cover them, had already skewered President Obama before turning her attention to Limbaugh.

Continue reading at Political Browser ».

Posted at 10:58 AM ET on May 11, 2009  | Category:  The Rundown
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How soon they forget. Don't they remember the one chosen to carry their banner this past fall? You know the one. She of "Obama is pallin' around with terrorists" of a man who lived in the same neighborhood and has never been convicted of a crime. The hate messages delivered at campaign rallies with no efffort to stop those who yelled "kill him" and other hate messages. No effort to correct the fear mongers who tried to call Obama everything from muslim to arab to terrorist while being incorrect about all of it. (Have to at least give McCain credit on that one- he DID correct the woman.) Palin never tried to correct anyone- she just relished the falsehoods and smiled that despicable smile some more. And for that matter, I have never heard anyone on the airwaves more hateful than Rush Limbaugh other than perhaps that creature Colter. Everytime that mouth opens you can see the bile rolling out. That creature is the vilest of vile republicans I've ever heard.

Posted by: alaskan2 | May 12, 2009 2:44 PM

Yes, it's true Sykes was just "doing what comedians do". But in this instance she was adding fuel to an already over-heated polarization among our people. Today's Democratic Party may be remembered as the most rude and ungracious winners in the country's political history, and deservedly so. As for the mainstream media, their performance through the past couple of years has been beyond contempt. The media have totally lost my trust and I will never forgive them. Fortunately for them I am 70 years old.

Posted by: bubba31138 | May 11, 2009 8:15 PM

One of the things that has become very clear is that Republicans have no sense of humor. And the more conservative they are the truer this seems. It is refreshing to see a president who can laugh at himself and his staff, admit that he makes mistakes and generally has a relaxed point of view that makes it unnecessary to be on the defensive all of the time. Republicans on the other hand, in the person of Bush, Cheney, Limbaugh, Palin, Gingrich, all of the FOX commentators, etc., etc., seem to have the humor gene missing. They are capable of making fun of others in ways that are demeaning and nasty and that evoke hate and anger. But they are incapable of real humor which conveys a sense of freedom and true enjoyment. Maybe it has to do with their native paranoia and fear. But they really are no fun at all.

Posted by: Jimdandy2 | May 11, 2009 3:40 PM

Wanda Sykes'CRIME:

PUBICALLY INSULTING A WHITE MAN, while being Black.
Someone please tell this woman what she did wrong, and why she's being sentenced.

Posted by: texas5 | May 11, 2009 3:28 PM

Comedienne spooking more than Rush?

WANDA SYKES -- NSA'S MOST (IN)FAMOUS EX-EMPLOYEE


When I tried to post a link to her interview about how she "transitioned" from NSA procurement officer to scathing comedic rabble-rouser, my browser stalled and "cookie" blocks that I didn't request showed up in my "preferences" list.

Just a coincidence?

Well, the link didn't work for me, but you can try it yourself at:

http://www.roadtripnation.com/wandasykes

Why would my internet connection be "filtered" in such a manner? Could it have anything to do with MY former positions as a mainstream journalist? For those who are interested:

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "Gestapo USA"


PS -- My first attempt to post today about Wanda Sykes and NSA was met with the "blog for blog owner" message that almost certainly did not emanate from WaPo. For those who have had similar experiences when attempting to post political commentary, please read this:

http://nowpublic.com/world/govt-fusion-center-spying-pretext-harass-and-censor

Posted by: scrivener50 | May 11, 2009 12:33 PM

Thank you, Chris. Imagine if a comedian "joked" that Obama was a terrorist who was guilty of treason and should be tortured to the point of kidney failure? As far as I know, Rush Limbaugh has never wished (in public) for Obama's death.

Posted by: JakeD | May 11, 2009 12:06 PM

For the party of supposed tough guys, the GOP sure whines like little butt-hurt babies a lot. No wonder the terrorists attacked during a GOP presidency.

Posted by: unpluggedboodah | May 11, 2009 11:21 AM

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