Monday, February 11, 2008

Chelsea, Davey and Hill, oh my!

MSNBC should have suspended David Shuster for saying that Hillary was "pimping out" Chelsea as a means of delivering a news story about Chelsea's campaigning for her mother. Any stiffer penalty is perhaps pushing the punishment for bad taste in an era of bad taste just a tad too far.

The Shuster/Chelsea flap is a stark reminder of what you get with the Clintons. Few among us will forget the convenient prop that Chelsea always provided during the “Bimbo eruptions” during the Clinton years. The hand holding trip to Marine One after the blue dress went public is hit that keeps on earning. Some among us have noticed the irony in Hillary, the actual production manager of the Jerry Springer Show: White House Edition, protesting the vulgar disparagement to which Chelsea had been subjected by Shuster’s use of the trashy vernacular “pimpin”.

After all, the Hillary led hit team trashed women who were far younger and less educated, undoubtedly far less intelligent and certainly far less privileged women than Chelsea for merely having inconveniently been of some sexual service (or not) to Bill Clinton . Monica Lewinsky and Paula Jones come to mind, but there were many, many more. While Bill and Hillary are righteously outraged What think you of Paula Jones’ parents reaction to James Carville’s “drag $100 bill through a trailer park” description of their daughter in light of the Clinton outrage now?

But the irony of it’s victim makes Shuster’s use of a slang expression about the daughter of an American President as part of a news story no less unprofessional nor grossly impolite. The incident also demonstrates the confusion that arises in our generally vulgar culture. Why should Don Imus lose his job for using the grossly impolite “nappy headed ho’s” to describe black girls when rappers use far, far more impolite language to describe black girls. Tough question to answer.

Same for David Shuster. After all, Don Imus’ performance at the Washington Press dinner during the Clinton Administration was far, far worse than his “ nappy headed ho’s” comment. The Clintons sat and listened to the most disturbingly disrespectful verbal abuse ever directed at a sitting President by Don Imus without objection. Even Newt wanted to walk out. “Pimpin” has become a term of regular and varied use in modern (multi) culture, often being used in a complimentary fashion. For example, TRS has heard rumors of a program entitled ”
Pimp My Ride that is popular with the young folks. How was Shuster to know wherein the invisible fence lay?

Imus and Shuster would have known if someone in a position to influence culture had much earlier provided a visible fence. It isn’t a sign of racial animosity toward persons of African descent to say that “pimpin” or anything else having to do with human trafficking, is never, ever a good word. Professional speaking of the English language-the real English language, does not include “pimpin” as a verb or adjective.

Similarly, the minimal standards of decorum necessary to a decent society precludes use of the President’s sex life in public entertainment, particularly when the President is presiding at the event. I concede the latter is easier done if the President would not make his sex life an ongoing public scandal of extortion, intimidation, perjury and obstruction of justice by the most powerful man in the world. But even if it’s hard, in fact, especially when it’s hard, the office should inspire at least respect when reverence and awe aren’t available in the presence of the President of the United States. After all, they really are different from the rest of us.

Now, both the Clintons and David Shuster have been victimized by the downward definition of deviancy that both have gone so far to promote.


Anonymous said...

What about that asshat Olberman saying that Bush was pimping out Petraeus on Capitol Hill.

Hitlery needs to STFU on this one. If she is going to throw her and Webb Hubbell's kid out there, then she turns Chelsea into fair game.

Anonymous said...

maybe she'll cry again

Dave D. Busher said...

We could have avoided all of this if we'd only gotten on board with Mark Klein, M.D. when we had the chance. He'd done whipped that bitch's ass by now.

Anonymous said...

Don't say, think, or even whisper that name as this discussion is not furthered at all whenever his name is mentioned. And Lord knows, we don't want his brand of blog terrorism to return.

Anonymous said...

Amen brother! to 9:07 AM.

Art A Layman said...


One could make the argument that "pimpin" fits right into the venacular of the favorites who post on your site so they can hear themselves think, or not think.

In your typical political manner it's hard to figure out what your trying to say here. It seems to be an argument denouncing our culture for its move toward a lack of reverence for much of anything or anyone. If so, valid point. It ain't gonna change back though.

We have seen the advent of a whole genre making their living by poking fun at our most hallowed institutions and positions. All in all, most of it is innocent and funny, much of it is subtle and nuanced and funny for those of us who get it. It can often be an escape, a release, for many who feel they have lost control or have little influence over the events that affect their lives.

Occasionally an Imus slips into the spotlight and, with his over the top manner, pushes the envelope over the line of good humor. All in all I liked Imus; I enjoyed his morning program especially the political interviews and some of his guests. Even I, one who gets a kick out of sick humor and is seldom offended by any words, used to cringe at some of what he and Bernie came up with. His mistake was the target of his vitriolic remarks. Attacking innocents, those who sought no individual spotlight, was not only bad taste it was cruel. I thought his apologies were sincere and should have settled the issue, but that's life.

David Shuster, I also like, but I do not feel he has been victimized. Being a constant viewer of MSNBC, surprise, surprise, I watched his evolution from being a competent reporter to a move toward more of a political/social commentator. His reporting began more and more to include judgments and criticisms. No doubt he was influenced by the success of Matthews and Olberman, par excellance in the genre, and was pursuing a path he felt would lead to greater position and wealth. Perhaps due to his youth, he went over the line and deserves some punishment. Many would have lost their jobs over that statement.

He, as Imus, made the mistake of attacking, visciously, an innocent, a young girl, not seeking fame and glory for herself, but merely trying to help out a mother who I'm sure she believes in. The words he chose were especially distasteful and inappropriate, but the attack, even in kinder words was unnecessary and unwarranted. He needed to learn about limits, hopefully he has. I'm not sure he ever gains back the respect he was accruing up to that point, but that's life too.

That "invisible fence" lays at the feet of those who can defend themselves. Should he have said the same thing about Bill or any of the other well known folks supporting Hillary, "fair game" might have been appropriately proclaimed. Directed at or of someone who is innocent; someone who is not yet schooled in how to deal with the vicious political world was way out of bounds. Shuster is not some copy boy who made good. He is bright, well educated and surrounded by competent players in the political commentary game. He should have known better.

Anonymous said...

I can't help myself...

Dave up there needs to pay his child support on time, show up on time for visitation on time, and give up on the idea that Mark Klein has any political future.

Anonymous said...

I think Dave's comments are with tongue planted firmly in cheek, I however must also add my two cents in that I found the object in question to be the most unabashed, repulsive, shit heel it has ever been my displeasure to meet.

Anonymous said...

I agree, Dave is clearly mocking the object in question but the mere mention of the name may bring him back just like saying "Beetlejuice" three times.