Ed Driscoll

'My Experience with that Show is like Herpes'


As Big Hollywood paraphrases a report from the Politico, “Both Parties in Congress Agree — ‘Colbert, you’re dead to us’:”

Members of Congress have been fooled time after time after time by Stephen Colbert, and after last week’s mockery, they have a message for the satirist who makes a living lampooning them: Colbert, you’re dead to us.

Colbert’s act had steadily been losing cachet on Capitol Hill, but his spoof testimony merely accelerated a pending divorce.

Lawmakers and their aides are repeatedly turning down requests for “The Colbert Report,” political advisers are suggesting members avoid Colbert like the plague and the infamous “Better Know a District” segment that put Colbert on the map on Capitol Hill appears to be dying out.

“My experience with that show is like herpes. It never goes away, and it itches and sometimes flares up,” said a former aide to Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, after his boss appeared on the show in 2006. The conservative Georgia Republican, co-sponsor of a bill requiring that the Ten Commandments be displayed in Congress, was skewered by Colbert in a segment of “Better Know a District” for appearing to be able to name only three of the commandments.

The episode has “haunted” the office for years, the former aide said. “I deeply regret letting him go on ‘The Colbert Report.’”

The Colbert divorce seems to be bipartisan. Spokesmen for both House campaign committees say they’d advise their candidates that there are better ways to raise their profiles than to expose themselves to Colbert.

And speaking of video performance artists, there’s James O’Keefe’s latest stunt. Short, immediate take: Huh?

Slightly longer, possible explanation from Ace:

[CNN’s journalist] wanted the story “James O’Keefe is a weirdo” so he was going to deliver that, playing a sexual deviant, let her run her story, and then reveal it was all a prank.It’s not the greatest expose because a reporter really can’t be blamed for reporting about you what you tell them, you know? But still, it would have been good for a laugh. Not a great scandal, but a funny punking.
There’s a context here: The New Republic ran a story called “Spring Breakdown” in the 90s depicting out-of-control sexually bestial conservatives going wild at CPAC. That story was by Stephen Glass. It was completely made up.

But no one questioned it much because, hey, conservatives suck, right? Everyone knows that, right?

Although O’Keefe is being depicted by CNN as if he intended to actually “seduce” this reporter, I think he means “seduce” as in “mentally seduce” as in “con.” He was going to play to her preconceived biases to the hilt, and just get ridiculously jiggy with it, and then expose her for having not picked up on what would seem in retrospect like an obvious scam.

If it turns out he did really mean to seduce her, well, that’s weird, and I’ll eat my words But I think he just meant to be silly.

Like I said — huh?

Update: Here’s Esquire’s initial take on what happened.

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