Saturday, May 5, 2018



I have sifted the fallout from the White House Correspondents' Dinner and concluded that despite some chicken-shit commentary from media who have been covering too many politically-correct protests and got infected, I'm firmly on the side of ridiculing politicians.
In my blog about my memories of the dinner, I grumbled about Michelle Wolf at this one separating her good lines with foul expanses. This doesn't mean I thought she should be cast into outer darkness for her criticism of the president and his White House denizens, including the official liar who doesn't even seem embarrassed when the boss is caught out on another whopper.
Stephen Colbert and Bill Maher and all the professionals who earned their spurs doing stand-up who have refused to cry Wolf because of her gutter bits are correct in saying that Trump and his staff deserve to be roasted here on earth before they go on to burn in Hell for their utter contempt for truth, facts and the ordinary Joes and Janes who haven't bought their way into Republican hearts. (Assuming this lot have them.)
The president, who has been counterfeit since 1980, likes to talk about "fake news." Now he certainly is an expert at fabrication. But he needs the media to distribute this insult for him. Why then do we go along?
It has been left to the comics to be the most effective weapon against his bluster, although they should use more rifles than blunderbusses.
I have written thousands of columns, editorials and blogs. I even have been called upon anonymously to help write putdowns and gags for speeches about major figures, including premiers and prime ministers.
Now it's easy to write diatribes, as jerks demonstrate hourly in social media, but it's much more difficult to be subtler and clever in your lines.
So I have often sought advice from those who also have had to write for living...but have to be funny too.
 I remember grilling the greats, like Jack Benny on an exercise walk down Yonge Street to the Royal York Hotel. (And if you don't know who he was, that master of timing and the stare with one hand to the mouth, then you haven't done rudimentary homework in judging comedy.)
I'm told that when you write a humorous column or a roast routine, you start by putting down every  pun, crude gag, insult and double entendre that you can think of. Let it all hang out, from toilet humour to slander to rusted kitchen sink. Then you go through with a thick black pen and take out almost all of it. What's left can be funny.
The problem with Wolf is that she needed a good editor, one that would let her say almost everything  she wanted, but would get rid of the worst smut. If you get rid of the groaners, then the rest is funnier.
Of course even when Donald Trump sticks to the Teleprompter script written by his confused and terrorized staff, he Trumps the worst line delivered by Wolf who just did what she was supposed to do and then is criticized by media apologists who don't have her guts.
You know if the Washington media were really serious about criticizing Huckleberry and the mistruths of her regular briefings, they just wouldn't show up. Boycott the liars and let Trump and Fox marinate in  their swamp.
Then the rest of us could watch old TBS movie classics and take a break from the weird reality of this weird reality president whose behaviour for more than three decades has been worse than anything that Wolf could say.

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