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So Not Eloquent: Richard Cohen on Stephen Colbert

Mr. Cohen,

I have a couple of questions for you in regards to your Washington Post article of May 4, 2006 ("So Not Funny").

1. You claim that Colbert's "deck chairs on the Hindenburg" statement is a "mixed metaphor." How so? Are you suggesting that zeppelins didn't have decks? Or that there were no chairs on the decks of zeppelins?

2. You state, "But on his own show he appeals to a self-selected audience that reminds him often of his greatness." A "self-selected" audience on television? Really? I don't watch his show, but I know people who do, and I can assure you that Colbert did not select them himself.


3. As for Colbert being "a bully," doesn't being a bully imply picking on someone weaker than you? Are you suggesting Colbert is more powerful than the President of the United States of America? Do you see anything ridiculous with that idea? Just checking.

4. Finally, while I agree with you that Colbert's performance was not laugh-out-loud, ha ha hilarious, I disagree that it was not important. One of the main problems with this administration is their refusal to listen to dissenting opinions. You say, "He had a chance to tell the president and much of important (and self-important) Washington things it would have been good for them to hear." What kind of things would it have been good for them to hear? I'm curious. Even though claim to be "a funny guy," please do not feel the need to be funny in your reply. I just want to know what kind of important things you think Colbert should've told the president.

Jake Brown

Is Bush pooping his pants?


Good points, although "self-select" carries the meaning that the regular viewers choose (self-select) to watch the show, and folks who don't like Colbert choose to not watch. This raises enthusiasm compared to a random audience.

Richard Cohen focusses on "manners" and what he sees as unforgivable rudeness. This to me is a rather doltish perspective to take. Cohen is irredeemable, and carries a lot of baggage, carrying water for the Bushies expecially on Iraq.
No wonder he finds it inconvenient to deal with hard-hitting substance rather than good manners.

I think Cohen is about as out-of-touch as Bush.

so of course he's noting going to like the truth...cause the truth can hurt.

What a stupid twat. Just what was his point? That Colbert's just lucky no one's going to execute him for his impertinence?

"... he appeals to a self-selected audience that reminds him often of his greatness."

Ummm, Mr. Cohen, you are confusing Mr. Colbert with Resident Bush.

I've been wondering if Colbert does a good enough job of mimicking conservative blowhards that the joke is lost on ultra-self-absorbed conservatives who think he's actually speaking to them. I am surprised that so many appear not to understand the parody. Perhaps I shouldn't be surprised.

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