The Note Attempts Intentional Humor; Chaos Ensues
The Note's prank email putting the bummerific words of Jimmy Carter's "malaise" speech into the mouth of Bush 43 continues to kick up much righteous blogo-ire. It's true that the early AM delivery of the satirical "scoop" got by--ahem--even some sharp-eyed bloggeurs. But we confess we can't get very worked up about the sober moral that Ameriblog urges us to adopt from the whole contretemps: Don't Ever Trust ABC's The Note Again. Especially when we read on to the reason for this righteous outburst:
Here's my problem with this. This isn't satire. This isn't parody. It's a serious, legitimate new source publishing a presidential address and claiming it's a scoop they just receieved. There is no irony in what they wrote in the intro, none at all. Now sure, if you're some geek with a PhD in government you might recognize this as Jimmy Carter's speech from 25 years ago. But otherwise, we're to believe this speech is real. (And oh yeah, there's an itty bitty link in their intro, called "link", to Jimmy Carter's speech - which honestly, only makes you think that Bush is harkening back to Jimmy Carter.)
My problem with all of this? People are emailing The Note's "speech" around the Internet today, thinking it's for real. That's how I got a copy. I just got done writing a long blog post about the speech, thinking it was real, since I trust ABC News, only to talk to Joe in DC who told me "that can't be real, The Note must be being funny."
No irony in the intro? How about the title of the whole dispatch: "What Might Come Next"? Where we come from "might" scans pretty unambiguously as an extremely conditional verb. Also, not only do almost no graduate programs offer PhD's in government--they're masters programs, at most--but the Carter speech is widely recognized as a watershed in that woebegone administration's flight from popularity. (Don't get us wrong--we here in Wonkette HQ find malaise dead sexy, and soak up all of the stuff we can lay our hands on--we're just echoing the consensus here.) We actually kind of like it that the Note gives its readers some credit for historical memories that extend beyond the premier of Mork and Mindy, even though it now appears that credit is largely misplaced.
Anyway, to us the real scandal here isn't the prank. It's that the Note actually made an effort to be funny in an intentional, unself-referential, and other than smarmily self-congratulatory, fashion. Rest assured, Mr. Outraged Americablogger, that it's a mistake they're not going to make again. -- HOLLY MARTINS
Don't Ever Trust ABC's The Note Again [Ameriblog]