Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Comrade Z Advances the Frontiers of Hypocrisy

Wine-swilling dilettante and SI “writer” Comrade Z, who holds a PhD in self-absorption and is thus often referred to as Doctor, has decided to venture away from his biography of Knute Rockney and idol worship of the Flaming Redhead to opine on the class of journalists he calls “Festering Boils”.

Comrade Z’s list of festering boils is intriguing:

… and they're all of a piece, Golenbock, Regan, Imus, Howard Stern, Limbaugh. There is little wit or intelligence involved in what they do, very little evidence of work involved or hard research to back up their pronouncements. Be loud, be outrageous, is what their sponsors want, and they oblige.
I would hesitate to call any of them a true “journalist,” and I don’t think they ever claimed to be such. Imus was probably closest, as an interviewer who spliced poor comedy into his act. Stern is a full-on bawdy comedian, Regan was a book publisher, Golenbock’s a fiction author, and Limbaugh is a political commentator.

I would have called them entertainers. Just because they work in the giant sphere of “media” doesn’t make them journalists. Maybe Comrade Z’s definition is different, which is fully possible, so this is perhaps a minor point.

More importantly, somehow his list misses another festering pustule of virulence, Keith Olbermann, who just two inches over on the SI main screen we see will be joining the NBC telecast. Olbermann at least carries pretensions of journalism while spewing his rants. I am also somewhat surprised that Comrade Z managed to miss Bill O’Reilly, who also probably considers himself a journalist.

But wait, the crazed ramblings of Comrade Z are not over! Now he weaves a fine tapestry of hypocrisy, which begins with this slam at these pustules which so inflame his sensibilities:

Someone else surely will pick him up, because there are always those who tune in to people such as Imus. […] All we can hope for will be that he'll be even worse next time, that the pop will be louder. And more permanent.
How is this hypocritical? Well, later on he when discussing Coach Coughlin of the giants, his sensitive side forces him to give us a lesson in etiquette:

Sure, it's easy to holler, "Fire the coach." I don't play that game with people's careers and families.
Kind of gets you weepy, doesn’t it? The Good Comrade thinks of other’s careers and families and showers his beneficence even upon the most unworthy. Just reading his column makes me a better human being. Doesn’t it do the same for you?

For some reason, incompetent coaching is okay with Comrade Z, but violations of the Z Speech Code merit inclusion in the Festering Boils of Society Page with the hope that they will be permanently popped. Perhaps with extreme prejudice, we don’t know. He’s a good man, Comrade Z, the kind of gentle philosopher we should all aspire to be.

For this fine work in the field of written hypocrisy, Comrade Z, we salute you! May those who speak improperly find themselves popped by the fires of your righteousness!