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UPDATE: Dan Froomkin, in his May 1, 2006 "White House Briefing" column in the Washington Post, writes, "Daily Kos blogger Frederick seems to have the most extensive transcript of Colbert’s talk." A nice recognition to receive from an outstanding journalist.

I've taken the existing transcripts I've seen of Stephen Colbert's brilliant monologue at the White House Correspondents Dinner, and the actual footage (complete video available at Democratic Underground and Google Video; more links to it here and here), and edited the transcripts (correcting spelling and punctuation, adding mistakenly omitted words, etc.) to produce the following improved transcript. I have now also transcribed all of Colbert's Press Secretary "audition video." Continue below the fold with me.

STEPHEN COLBERT:  Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. Before I begin, I've been asked to make an announcement. Whoever parked 14 black bulletproof S.U.V.'s out front, could you please move them? They are blocking in 14 other black bulletproof S.U.V.'s and they need to get out.

Wow. Wow, what an honor. The White House correspondents' dinner. To actually sit here, at the same table with my hero, George W. Bush, to be this close to the man. I feel like I'm dreaming. Somebody pinch me. You know what? I'm a pretty sound sleeper -- that may not be enough. Somebody shoot me in the face. Is he really not here tonight? Dammit. The one guy who could have helped.

By the way, before I get started, if anybody needs anything else at their tables, just speak slowly and clearly into your table numbers. Somebody from the NSA will be right over with a cocktail. Mark Smith, ladies and gentlemen of the press corps, Madame First Lady, Mr. President, my name is Stephen Colbert and tonight it's my privilege to celebrate this president. We're not so different, he and I. We get it. We're not brainiacs on the nerd patrol. We're not members of the factinista. We go straight from the gut, right sir? That's where the truth lies, right down here in the gut. Do you know you have more nerve endings in your gut than you have in your head? You can look it up. I know some of you are going to say "I did look it up, and that's not true." That's 'cause you looked it up in a book.

Next time, look it up in your gut. I did. My gut tells me that's how our nervous system works. Every night on my show, the Colbert Report, I speak straight from the gut, OK? I give people the truth, unfiltered by rational argument. I call it the "No Fact Zone." Fox News, I hold a copyright on that term.

I'm a simple man with a simple mind. I hold a simple set of beliefs that I live by. Number one, I believe in America. I believe it exists. My gut tells me I live there. I feel that it extends from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and I strongly believe it has 50 states. And I cannot wait to see how the Washington Post spins that one tomorrow. I believe in democracy. I believe democracy is our greatest export. At least until China figures out a way to stamp it out of plastic for three cents a unit.

In fact, Ambassador Zhou Wenzhong, welcome. Your great country makes our Happy Meals possible. I said it's a celebration. I believe the government that governs best is the government that governs least. And by these standards, we have set up a fabulous government in Iraq.

I believe in pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps. I believe it is possible -- I saw this guy do it once in Cirque du Soleil. It was magical. And though I am a committed Christian, I believe that everyone has the right to their own religion, be you Hindu, Jewish or Muslim. I believe there are infinite paths to accepting Jesus Christ as your personal savior.

Ladies and gentlemen, I believe it's yogurt. But I refuse to believe it's not butter. Most of all, I believe in this president.

Now, I know there are some polls out there saying this man has a 32% approval rating. But guys like us, we don't pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking in "reality." And reality has a well-known liberal bias.

So, Mr. President, please, pay no attention to the people that say the glass is half full. 32% means the glass -- it's important to set up your jokes properly, sir. Sir, pay no attention to the people who say the glass is half empty, because 32% means it's 2/3 empty. There's still some liquid in that glass is my point, but I wouldn't drink it. The last third is usually backwash.

Okay, look, folks, my point is that I don't believe this is a low point in this presidency. I believe it is just a lull before a comeback. I mean, it's like the movie "Rocky." All right. The president in this case is Rocky Balboa and Apollo Creed is -- everything else in the world. It's the tenth round. He's bloodied. His corner man, Mick, who in this case I guess would be the vice president, he's yelling, "Cut me, Dick, cut me!," and every time he falls everyone says, "Stay down! Stay down!" Does he stay down? No. Like Rocky, he gets back up, and in the end he -- actually, he loses in the first movie.

OK. Doesn't matter. The point is it is the heart-warming story of a man who was repeatedly punched in the face. So don't pay attention to the approval ratings that say 68% of Americans disapprove of the job this man is doing. I ask you this, does that not also logically mean that 68% approve of the job he's not doing? Think about it. I haven't.

I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message: that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound -- with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.

Now, there may be an energy crisis. This president has a very forward-thinking energy policy. Why do you think he's down on the ranch cutting that brush all the time? He's trying to create an alternative energy source. By 2008 we will have a mesquite-powered car!

And I just like the guy. He's a good Joe. Obviously loves his wife, calls her his better half. And polls show America agrees. She's a true lady and a wonderful woman. But I just have one beef, ma'am.

I'm sorry, but this reading initiative. I'm sorry, I've never been a fan of books. I don't trust them. They're all fact, no heart. I mean, they're elitist, telling us what is or isn't true, or what did or didn't happen. Who's Britannica to tell me the Panama Canal was built in 1914? If I want to say it was built in 1941, that's my right as an American! I'm with the president, let history decide what did or did not happen.

The greatest thing about this man is he's steady. You know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday that he believed on Monday, no matter what happened Tuesday. Events can change; this man's beliefs never will.

As excited as I am to be here with the president, I am appalled to be surrounded by the liberal media that is destroying America, with the exception of Fox News. Fox News gives you both sides of every story:  the president's side, and the vice president's side.

But the rest of you, what are you thinking, reporting on NSA wiretapping or secret prisons in eastern Europe? Those things are secret for a very important reason:  they're super-depressing. And if that's your goal, well, misery accomplished.

Over the last five years you people were so good -- over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn't want to know, and you had the courtesy not to try to find out. Those were good times, as far as we knew.

But, listen, let's review the rules. Here's how it works: the president makes decisions. He's the Decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Just put 'em through a spell check and go home. Get to know your family again. Make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration. You know - fiction!

Because really, what incentive do these people have to answer your questions, after all? I mean, nothing satisfies you. Everybody asks for personnel changes. So the White House has personnel changes. Then you write, "Oh, they're just rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic." First of all, that is a terrible metaphor. This administration is not sinking. This administration is soaring. If anything, they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg!

Now, it's not all bad guys out there. Some are heroes: Christopher Buckley, Jeff Sacks, Ken Burns, Bob Schieffer. They've all been on my show. By the way, Mr. President, thank you for agreeing to be on my show. I was just as shocked as everyone here is, I promise you. How's Tuesday for you? I've got Frank Rich, but we can bump him. And I mean bump him. I know a guy. Say the word.

See who we've got here tonight. General Moseley, Air Force Chief of Staff. General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. They still support Rumsfeld. Right, you guys aren't retired yet, right? Right, they still support Rumsfeld.

Look, by the way, I've got a theory about how to handle these retired generals causing all this trouble:  don't let them retire! Come on, we've got a stop-loss program; let's use it on these guys. I've seen Zinni and that crowd on Wolf Blitzer. If you're strong enough to go on one of those pundit shows, you can stand on a bank of computers and order men into battle. Come on.

Jesse Jackson is here, the Reverend. Haven't heard from the Reverend in a little while. I had him on the show. Very interesting and challenging interview. You can ask him anything, but he's going to say what he wants, at the pace that he wants. It's like boxing a glacier. Enjoy that metaphor, by the way, because your grandchildren will have no idea what a glacier is.

Justice Scalia is here. Welcome, sir. May I be the first to say, you look fantastic. How are you?  [After each sentence, Colbert makes a hand gesture, an allusion to Scalia's recent use of an obscene Sicilian hand gesture in speaking to a reporter about Scalia's critics. Scalia is seen laughing hysterically.] Just talking some Sicilian with my paisan.

John McCain is here. John McCain, John McCain, what a maverick! Somebody find out what fork he used on his salad, because I guarantee you it wasn't a salad fork. This guy could have used a spoon! There's no predicting him. By the way, Senator McCain, it's so wonderful to see you coming back into the Republican fold. I have a summer house in South Carolina; look me up when you go to speak at Bob Jones University. So glad you've seen the light, sir.

Mayor Nagin! Mayor Nagin is here from New Orleans, the chocolate city! Yeah, give it up. Mayor Nagin, I'd like to welcome you to Washington, D.C., the chocolate city with a marshmallow center. And a graham cracker crust of corruption. It's a Mallomar, I guess is what I'm describing, a seasonal cookie.

Joe Wilson is here, Joe Wilson right down here in front, the most famous husband since Desi Arnaz. And of course he brought along his lovely wife Valerie Plame. Oh, my god. [looks horrified] Oh, what have I said? I -- Je- minetti (sp?). I am sorry, Mr. President, I meant to say he brought along his lovely wife Joe Wilson's wife. Patrick Fitzgerald is not here tonight? OK. Dodged a bullet.

And, of course, we can't forget the man of the hour, new press secretary, Tony Snow. Secret Service name, "Snow Job." Toughest job. What a hero. Took the second toughest job in government, next to, of course, the ambassador to Iraq.

Got some big shoes to fill, Tony. Big shoes to fill. Scott McClellan could say nothing like nobody else. McClellan, of course, eager to retire. Really felt like he needed to spend more time with Andrew Card's children. Mr. President, I wish you hadn't made the decision so quickly, sir.

I was vying for the job myself. I think I would have made a fabulous press secretary. I have nothing but contempt for these people. I know how to handle these clowns.

In fact, sir, I brought along an audition tape and with your indulgence, I'd like to at least give it a shot. So, ladies and gentlemen, my press conference.


Colbert shows a video of a mock press conference. It opens with an empty podium. Colbert's head rises from behind the podium until Colbert is standing at the podium. He addresses the assembled Washington press corps.

COLBERT: I have a brief statement: the press is destroying America. OK, let's see who we've got here today.

COLBERT (acknowledging various reporters): Stretch! (David Gregory nods)

Sir Nerdlington! (reporter nods)

Sloppy Joe! (reporter nods)

Terry Lemon Moran Pie! (Terry Moran nods)

Oh, Doubting Thomas, always a pleasure. (Helen Thomas smiles)

And Suzanne Mal -- hello!!

(Suzanne Malveaux stares at Colbert, looking unhappy. Colbert mimics putting a phone to his ear and mouths "call me.")

REPORTER: Will the Vice President be available soon to answer all questions himself?

COLBERT: I've already addressed that question. You (pointing to another reporter).

REPORTER: Walter Cronkite, the noted CBS anchor, . . .

COLBERT (interrupting): Ah, no, he's the former CBS anchor. Katie Couric is the new anchor of the CBS Evening News. Well, well, how do you guys feel about that?

You, tousle-haired guy in the back. Are you happy about Katie Couric taking over the CBS Evening News?

DAN RATHER: No, sir, Mr. Colbert. Are you? (Laughter)

COLBERT: Boom! Oh, look, we woke David Gregory up. Question?

DAVID GREGORY: Did Karl Rove commit a crime?

COLBERT: I don't know. I'll ask him.

(Colbert turns to Rove) Karl, pay attention please! (Rove is seen drawing a heart with "Karl + Stephen" written on it.)

GREGORY: Do you stand by your statement from the fall of 2003 when you were asked specifically about Karl, and Elliott Abrams, and Scooter Libby, and you said "I've gone to each of those gentlemen, and they have told me that they are not involved in this." Do you stand by that statement?

COLBERT: Nah, I was just kidding!

GREGORY: No, you're not finishing. You're not saying anything! You stood at that podium and said . . .

COLBERT (interrupting): Ah, that's where you're wrong. New podium! Just had it delivered today. Get your facts straight, David.

GREGORY: This is ridiculous. The notion that you're going to stand before us after having commented with that level of detail and tell the people watching this that somehow you've decided not to talk. You've got to . . .

(Colbert is seen looking at three buttons on the podium, labeled "EJECT," "GANNON" and "VOLUME." He selects the "VOLUME" button and turns it. We see Gregory's lips continue moving, but can't hear any sound coming out.)

COLBERT: If I can't hear you, I can't answer your question. I'm sorry! I have to move on. Terry.

TERRY MORAN: After the investigation began, after the criminal investigation was underway, you said . . .

(Colbert presses a button on the podium and fast-forwards through most of Moran's question.)

MORAN (continuing): All of a sudden, you have respect for the sanctity of a criminal investigation?

COLBERT (seen playing with rubber ball, which he is bouncing off attached paddle): No, I never had any respect for the sanctity of a criminal investigation. Activist judges! Yes, Helen.

HELEN THOMAS: You're going to be sorry. (Laughter)

COLBERT (looking vastly amused, mockingly): What are you going to do, Helen, ask me for a recipe?

THOMAS: Your decision to invade Iraq has caused the deaths of thousands (Colbert's smile fades) of Americans and Iraqis, wounds of Americans and Iraqis for a lifetime.

COLBERT (interrupting): OK, hold on Helen, look . . .

THOMAS (continuing): Every reason given, publicly at least, has turned out not to be true. My question is, why did you really want to go to war?

COLBERT (again interrupting): Helen, I'm going to stop you right there. (Thomas keeps talking.) That's enough! No! Sorry, Helen, I'm moving on. (Colbert tries to turn her volume off, but the knob falls off his controls.)

(Various reporters start shouting questions at Colbert.)

COLBERT (agitated): Guys, guys, please don't let Helen do this to what was a lovely day.

(Reporters keep shouting at him.)

COLBERT (putting his fingers over his ears and shouting in a high-pitched voice): Bllrrtt! No, no, no, no, no. I'm not listening to you!

Look what you did, Helen! I hate you!

(Helen Thomas glowers at Colbert.)

COLBERT (frantic): I'm out of here!

(Colbert pulls back the curtain behind him, desperately trying to flee. He says, "There is a wall here!" The press corps laughs. Colbert has difficulty finding a door from which to exit the room, echoing Bush's experience in China. He finally finds the door and hurries through it.)

COLBERT: It reeks in there! Ridiculous! I've never been so insulted in my life! Stupid job.

(Colbert continues walking away. We hear sinister-sounding music playing. We see Helen Thomas walking behind Colbert.)

(Colbert looks behind him, sees Thomas, and starts running.)

(Colbert trips over a roller skate. He yells "Condi!" We see a close-up of Helen Thomas' face, looking determined and angry. Colbert, increasingly panicked, gets up and continues running, running into a parking garage. He reaches an emergency call box, and yells into it.)

COLBERT: Oh, thank God. Help me!

ATTENDANT: What seems to be the problem, sir?

COLBERT: She won't stop asking why we invaded Iraq!

ATTENDANT: Hey, why did we invade Iraq?

COLBERT: NO!!! (runs toward his car)

(We see Helen Thomas, still walking toward him.)

(Colbert reaches his car, and fumblingly attempts to open it with his key. He is in such a desperate hurry that he fumbles with the keys and drops them. When he picks them up, he looks back and Helen is even closer. In his frantic rush, Colbert just can't get the key into the lock.)

(Just as his anxiety is getting completely out of control he suddenly remembers that he has a keyless remote -- so he just pushes the button on the keychain and the car unlocks immediately with the usual double squeak noise. Colbert jumps in and locks the door, and continues to fumble trying to start the car. He finally succeeds, and looks up to see Helen standing in front of the car, notepad in hand.)


(Colbert puts the car into reverse and drives off, tires squealing. Thomas smiles.)

(Colbert is shown taking the shuttle from Washington, D.C. to New York. A car and driver are waiting for him at Penn Station. The uniformed man standing alongside the car opens the door and lets Colbert in.)

COLBERT: What a terrible trip, Danny. Take me home.

(The driver locks the doors, turns around, and says, "Buckle up, hon." IT'S HELEN THOMAS!!!)

COLBERT (horrified face pressed against car window): NO!!!


STEPHEN COLBERT: Helen Thomas, ladies and gentlemen. Mr. Smith, members of the White House Correspondents Association, Madame First Lady, Mr. President, it's been a true honor. Thank you very much. Good night!

Originally posted to Frederick on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 11:04 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  This is great (13+ / 0-)

    But this it's not fact police, it's factanista.  I know you might have put that so everyone understands, but 'factanista' is a great word.

    Reality has a well-known liberal bias. - Stephen Colbert

    by Unusual Suspect on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 11:09:29 AM PDT

    •  Or is it factinista? n/t (9+ / 0-)

      Reality has a well-known liberal bias. - Stephen Colbert

      by Unusual Suspect on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 11:11:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  'Stephen, this is Comedy Central. You're fired. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gpclay, easong, djalix976

        We're tearing up your contract.  Orders from the White House.  And don't bother coming back to the office, the FBI came and got all your stuff.  Just go back to your apartment, I think they've got some guys waiting there to escort you to Gitmo.  Buh-bye."

        •  Oh, they'd be insane to cut his show NOW (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gpclay, easong, exiledfromTN, Dvalkure

          Especially after this "hot fucking damn right on" display.  His ratings are gonna SOAR now.  Hell yeah.

          "Anyone effin tired of this crap, yet?" IMPEACH!!!!!

          by smugbug on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 03:57:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]


            And that's all that's on AOL's news page.

            So I sent AP a letter, letting them in on what their reporter obviously missed, and you might want to fill the Associated Press in, too.


            Hey, AP: You missed the real news at the White House Correspondents dinner.

            It wasn't the silly "Bush look-a-like" as everyone there was aware, but Stephen Colbert's brilliant monologue and short film.

            One more reason I don't get my news from newspapers -- or AP -- anymore. The blogs actually cover what's news, not the establishment spin and coverup.

            So, since your reporter apparently left you out of the loop, below is the transcript of Colbert's speech:

            (At which point, I sent the transcript in the diary above.)

      •  So Sorry - laughing (5+ / 0-)

        so hard I hit the 'troll' button, instead of the recco ! but I got it fixed already.

        I am waiting for the 2nd installment of the vid clip to down load on my slow it is GREAT to read the whole thing.
        Man ! It was weird ( during the first third ) to see how uncomfortable I was many in the crowd. We are thoroughly brain-washed into some kind of zombie power appeasing mode...I have to keep reminding myself that this pResident is illegal and immoral and made himself a laughing stock long before dear Steven Colbert decided to speak some truth to power !
        He 's great and I can't wait to see the job audition portion - as well as the 'leaving in a hissy-huff' portion.
        Whew ! Way to go

        'We're sick and tired of being sick and tired' ~ St.FannyLou Hamer

        by Dvalkure on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 04:57:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Who knew it would happen? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Creosote, Benjaminwise

          This year, April Fool's Day came on the last day of the month...and the Chimp was the Fool.

          We're all in this together.

          by JTML on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 09:51:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  You mean 'speaking truthiness to power' :-) (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gpclay, Demena

          And as some of the other posters have said, a picture-in-picture of Chimpy and Pickles' expressions would have been great!

          On second thought, 25 minutes of Chimpy...maybe that's not such a good idea after all.

          Colbert's performance was the only thing I've ever seen that can match David Letterman's moment while hosting the Oscars, where - in front of both Hollywood and over a billion of their fans around the world - for "Stupid Oscars Pet Tricks" he brought out a dog that was conditioned to chase its tail in response to applause.  And the louder the applause, the faster and more mindlessly the dog would chase.

          At first the audience laughed and applauded wildly.  But as the bit went on and on, it became clear the dog truly would never stop as long as someone was applauding.  The dog's seemingly clever trick began to look more and more like a desperate and uncontrollable need for attention and approval, and there was that same slowly dawning realization of "hey, is he making fun of us?"

          Of course, Bush doesn't quite have the power to have someone executed the way that Oprah does, but still.

          In all seriousness, Colbert's performance was one of the bravest and most courageous I've ever seen.

          Thank you, Stephen Colbert.

          25th Amendment - Use It Or Lose It!

    •  On the subject of humor... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sister Havana, Lashe

      I think people will like this (if you haven't already seen it):

      How many members of the Bush administration does it take to change a light bulb?

      1. One to call Fox News so they can broadcast a story denying that the light bulb needed to be changed in the first place
      1. One to attack the patriotism of anyone who says the light bulb needs to be changed
      1. One to blame Bill and Hillary for burning out the light bulb
      1. One to arrange the invasion of a country rumored to have caused the light bulb to burn out and to find the stockpile of light bulbs
      1. One to give a billion dollar no-bid contract to Halliburton for the new light bulb
      1. One to arrange a photograph of Bush, dressed as a janitor, standing on a step ladder under the banner: Light Bulb Change Accomplished
      1. One administration insider to resign and write a book documenting in detail how Bush was literally in the dark
      1. One to viciously smear 7
      1. One surrogate to campaign on TV and at rallies on how George Bush has had a strong light-bulb-changing policy all along
      1. One to arrange a Press Conference where Bush will tell everyone that he is the "Decider" and he decided all alone that the light bulb needed changing
  •  Thanks! (7+ / 0-)

    Might link to the various video sources now on-line:
    And in the last line ... "Thomas!"  (not Thomson).

    Cheers.  There is much ironiness in the WH correspondents' dinner.

    Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Powell, & Rice lied to promote an illegal, aggressive war. Hague 'em!

    by Yellow Canary on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 11:17:14 AM PDT

  •  thanks! (8+ / 0-)

    epic stand-up, will go down in history.

    -6.63, -3.59 If we shall fail to defend the Constitution, I shall fail in the attempt.

    by spoon or no spoon on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 11:20:48 AM PDT

    •  It should be preserved, (3+ / 0-)

      enshrined -- like the Declaration of Independence.

      Against silence. Which is slavery. - Czeslaw Milosz

      by Caneel on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 01:33:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed! (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gpclay, Caneel, jem6x, Shapeshifter, Lashe

        & while we're at it, a REAL Presidential Medal of Freedom to Saint Stephen for 'spinefulness'; with matchin' ones for Paul Krugman, David Brock (, Randi Rhodes, Al Franken and hey check out Frank Rich's great op-ed in today's nytimes "Bush of a Thousand Days".

        "Like the hand that suddenly pops out of the grave at the end of "Carrie", the past keeps coming back to haunt the Bush White House."

        ...  "The demons that keep rising up from the past to grab Mr. Bush are the fictional W.M.D. he wielded to take us into Iraq. They stalk him as relentlessly as Banquo's ghost did Macbeth. From that original sin, all else flows. Mr. Rove wouldn't be in jeopardy if the White House hadn't hatched a clumsy plot to cover up its fictions. Mr. Bush's poll numbers wouldn't be in the toilet if American blood was not being spilled daily because of his fictions. By recruiting a practiced Fox News performer to better spin this history, the White House reveals that it has learned nothing. Made-for-TV propaganda propelled the Bush presidency into its quagmire in the first place. At this late date only the truth, the whole truth and nothing but, can set it free."

        In an ideal world, a medal for Frank Rich too.

        Reason w/o fear! "Liberty for wolves is death to the lambs." -Sir Isaiah Berlin

        by Monique Radevu on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 09:19:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  That's why they want control of the Net (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      it's "not fair" that people can see and read this material in an unsupervised manner.

      What a weekend!

  •  "braniacs" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Not "brain backs". I guess that was the CC?

    And the Scalia "hand gestures" were all variations on "fuck you" gestures (Italian -- sicilian? -- in origin). More or less.

  •  Fantastico. Thanks, I've been waiting for this. (6+ / 0-)

    I don't have access to a broadband connection at the moment so your rescue package allows the rest of us to catch up with all the fun.  

    Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

    by HoundDog on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 11:36:44 AM PDT

    •  Ahhh I feel your pain (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HoundDog, Lashe

      I was lucky enough to see it at work late last night before I came home but trying to load it up on my dial-up is a bit different.

      Hopefully Crooks & Liars will have the downloadable file (as opposed to the streaming stuff elsewhere) of the entire thing before long.  Someone said that they were going to be posting the entire speech later but dunno if that's true or not.   They still just have the last portion of it last time I looked.

      •  yes, the pain. 'oh the pain' as Dr Smith used to (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        say on lost in space.  This is a day of awareness of socio-economic disparity isn't it.

        We started the day, not being able to read Frank Rich's Times Select diary.  And now this.  

        Oh the humanity of it all.

        Bloggers of the world unite!  Let's cast of these oppressive chains of information aged class oppression.

        Information, knowledge, and broad band access should be accessable to all the world's people just lack adequate health care, education, eguality, basic civil libeties, and XBox 360 video games!

        Down with inequity and class oppression!

        Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

        by HoundDog on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 03:08:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  It is best watched with a transcript in hand. (8+ / 0-)

    With Colbert's rapid fire delivery, a lot of it just whizzed by. With the transcript,
    I can see how truly, truly devastating his performance was.

  •  Andrew Card's Children? (5+ / 0-)

    I hope that didn't mean what I thought it ment.  I know Scotty is another self-loathing, republican homosexual, but I've never heard anything about him being a pedophile.

  •  Updated/corrected again (9+ / 0-)

    Per your comments, I added the Democratic Underground link to the complete video and corrected the nonsensical "brain backs" to "brainiacs."  Thanks again.

    When we talk about war, we're really talking about peace. George W. Bush

    by Frederick on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 12:01:14 PM PDT

  •  brilliant (14+ / 0-)

    The man is brilliant. now, how much went over the chimp's head? Laura will probably explain it to him later if she can remember it. I really did sit with my hand over my mouth like the audience guy, in total amazement! ROTFLMAO. I will not miss Colbert's show any more.

  •  Thank you so much! n/t (0+ / 0-)

    "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

    by ilyana on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 12:07:12 PM PDT

  •  I have now watched the entire Colbert segment (22+ / 0-)

    twice (on etube). It is absolutely devastating. The few glimpses that we have of the audience shows that the tension was extremely high - I don't think any of them were expecting such a pointed, hard-hitting attack on Bush camouflaged as humor.
    Colbert deserves the highest possible praise.
    Finally someone with big enough balls to tell it as it is - it made me ashamed of our cringing Dems in Congress.
    The MSM, which was mightily indicted by Colbert, is trying to sweep the whole thing under the carpet and is at present in hiding.
    The effectiveness and accuracy of Colbert's attack on the administration will be measured by the enormous hate response that he will get on right-wing blogs - wait and see...

    we're shocked by a naked nipple, but not by naked aggression

    by Lepanto on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 12:10:22 PM PDT

    •  Link please? (C&L is only half..) n/t (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sockpuppet, imabluemerkin

      Will you spend an hour on the ground for every 100 hours you spend fuming online?

      by dspivak on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 12:25:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Free Republic Reactions Thread (11+ / 0-)

      The reactions in freeper land were to simply shut off Colbert, rather like the MSM.   Seems like most of the FP commentors simply wimped out, refused to watch, and couldn't take the withering attack for even a few minutes.  Followed by rabid dismisals and attempts to change the subject.

      They want an apology of course for the outrage against the president--dignity after all.  They are still in denial about the effectiveness of the searing critique.  They do know at some level there's been a severe goring.   They probably are somewhat mollified that the media is choosing to ignore Colbert's specifics.  

      But they are missing the viral nature that this MSM reaction of ignoring Colbert gives to the 'underground' internet coverage.  The credibility of the mass media is shown to be failing by this, since it represses key aspects of the story.  Americans who saw the live performance (or recorded ones) and then view the MSM recounting of it will see the level of MSM spin and misrepresentation, the minimization of that fireworks finale performance.  They will see the coordinated media blockade to protect a weakened president whose outrageous acts make him quite vulnerable.

      One of the FP commentors pointed to this HuffingtonPost link as example of the hatred being shown:

      Read that link.  I'll need some help looking for the hatred. Looks like realistic assessments being made to me.

      When life gives you wingnuts, make wingnut butter!

      by antirove on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 12:49:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Poor bubble boy (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sockpuppet, Dvalkure, Monique Radevu

        The Republican apologists think it's treason to make the president feel uncomfortable.  This is probably the only time Bush hears what 68% of the country really thinks of him!

        Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts. -- Daniel Patrick Monynihan

        by Unstable Isotope on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 01:20:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I took a peek (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sockpuppet, lulu57, Shotput8, Dvalkure, Lashe

        last night at the Freeper live-blogging, and the best thing they could come up with was insulting Helen Thomas by saying how ugly she is. God, that made me angry, but what can I expect from people who expect to get their news from mindless blonde bits of fluff?

        "I wish that for just one time You could stand inside my shoes You'd know what a drag it is To see you" - Dylan

        by Floja Roja on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 03:07:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  *choke* *gag* (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Just  braved the depths of freepervill to see what they were saying ... basically the only thing they did say was Colbert was un funny and they couldn't stand to watch it ... then they started talking about American Idol ... more on their intellectual bandwidth I would say ... oh, they also complained about how "nasty" Colbert was to poor Scalia ... ignoring of course the reality that Scalia was laughing his head off and that those were the very same gestures Scalia had used on a reporter sigh don't let facts get in the way ever that lot ...

        They also started randomly talking about how the estate tax must be repealed because it hurts hardworking Americans who have skimped and saved to pass on money to their families ... WTF!?!??!?! Because clearly people can skimp and save there way to more than $2 million dollars rolls eyes

        if global warming is a moral issue, then Gore has a moral obligation to run for president

        by IAblue on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 05:08:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The problem is that he's NOT funny... (0+ / 0-)

          All i could do was wince while watching it. Those jackals are laughing while he's talking about how they have failed in their duties. He's saying "Hey, you know Rome? It's burning and you're fiddling!" and they laugh.

          But then again, maybe that wasn't Colbert not being funny. Maybe it's more the world we live in being tragic.

          The Shapeshifter's Blog -- Politics, Philosophy, and Madness!

          by Shapeshifter on Mon May 01, 2006 at 12:16:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  That's funny (0+ / 0-)
        Couldn't watch...winced...turned away.

        That's the exact reaction I get during scheduled Presidential addresses. I do force myself to watch out of some masochistic desire to know mine enemy, but God it's hard sometimes.

        The exception was this year's SOTU. Not even a wince worthy performance--I just sobbed a bit that it all came to this.

  •  torrent? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marjo, Lashe

    if anyone finds a high definition torrent file, please post it here.  Preferably one that includes Bush's speech to put things into full context

    "I believe that if you have a theory and the fact comes along that changes the theory, then you throw out the theory." - Howard Dean

    by Bryan in CT on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 12:16:38 PM PDT

  •  here's a poll (7+ / 0-)

    Blogatha! The political, the personal. Not necessarily in that order.

    by ksh01 on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 12:32:59 PM PDT

  •  With the tension (7+ / 0-)

    in the room, the video was funny, but also scary.  Reading the transcript, it's brilliant and funny and painfully true.  After the first two paragraphs, I had to say, "OUCH!"  and then laugh and applaud.

  •  Muchos heuvos grandes indeed! (11+ / 0-)

    Eagle-daddy Stephen Colbert regurgitates truth-vomit and feeds it straight to Bush.  What a performance!  Thanks so much for the transcript. Highly recommended.

  •  Holy Fuck. (18+ / 0-)
    Finally, someone stands up and says the clothes have no emperor.

    It was so over the top. Colbert came to their little love fest and crapped on the table. The MSM establishment will not be amused.

    It's about fucking time. Too bad they'll all pile on top of him. The press doesn't like being scolded and he sure as hell took them out back to the woodshed.

    I'm so pleased they were uncomfortable--the damn well deserve to be.

    •  I think this was the work of the MSM (7+ / 0-)

      I think they wanted Colbert to say what they do not have the courage to say. Most of those people in the press are decent people who can't say what they want to say. It's the editorial boards that are responsible for the state of the press--though the reporters to bear some responsibility.

      Along with the revolt of the Generals this is very important. Those that selected and approved of putting Colbert there are big-time heroes--they wanted to get back at the Emperor for his mindless evil with some spirited finger-pointing. This may break the back of this President--I think it is that important.

      Om Lokaha Samastaha Sukhino Bhavantu (may all beings in all the worlds be happy)

      by Chris Cosmos on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 02:15:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I didn't see it (5+ / 0-)

    but reading this had tears flowing from my eyes, actually, they still are. That was brilliant. Almost brilliant enough for me to go out and buy a television and order cable tv just to watch the Daily Show. Fucking brilliant!

    "For war, billions more, but no more for the poor" Reverend Joseph Lowery 02/07/06

    by Prison4Bushco on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 01:09:22 PM PDT

  •  Felt the laughter in my gut (20+ / 1-)

    I know a lot of people will single him out for bravery, but what I love about Colbert's approach is that he's using Truman's dictum, "Give 'em the truth and it sounds like hell." After all, what was Bush or Fox to do in retaliation? He's a comic, and most successful comics get their confidence from knowing that if the chips were down and they had to go back to doing stand-up, they'd could do so willingly. There's next to nothing that Bush can do to Colbert, and the radical nature of his appearance stems from the fact that Colbert is aware of this and is daring people to accept his premise: Bush is powerless to hurt anybody who doesn't want to be hurt by him.

    The sheer brilliance is that each paragraph is so laden with derision for Bush that the other side doesn't dare complain about the appearance, because quoting any of it only bolsters Colbert's cause. All they can do is pretend it didn't happen, and that Colbert doesn't exist, and as these clips make their way around the internet, a virus will begin to gnaw away, undermining Bush every second of every day. I would give anything to know how people approached Bush in the immediate aftermath of the dinner. What an idiot he is for even showing up.

    Man, this has put me on cloud 9. Maybe Bush can get Jenna's boyfriend to try to teach Colbert a lesson, like they tried to do to their aerobics instructor.

    •  Aerobics instructor? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mrblifil, Dvalkure

      I haven't heard that story.

      I love it when he told Fox News that he had copyrighted "Fact Free Zone."

      Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts. -- Daniel Patrick Monynihan

      by Unstable Isotope on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 01:23:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  aerobics (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Jenna and boyfriend were at some class at a gym. Instructor made many negative comments about the chimperor. Boyfriend commented (after the fact, on the phone) to instructor's superiors. There should be a few diaries on it from about 10-14 days ago.

    •  Shout this from the rooftops! (6+ / 0-)

      Bush is powerless to hurt anybody who doesn't want to be hurt by him.

      Thank you for your articulation of the import of Colbert's "stand up." Yes, stand up. Poor media, poor, poor MSM. Will Colbert's message linger? Finally hit home? Stay tuned.

      Against silence. Which is slavery. - Czeslaw Milosz

      by Caneel on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 02:07:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Tribute to Pat Paulsen - Colbert 4 Pres!!! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, mrblifil, lirtydies

      I once had the great fortune of meeting and even working with Pat Paulsen in about 1984.  He spent half a day at our San Antonio Radio Station, and for a couple hours I had the pleasure of engineering and producing some recorded material for radio, following Pat's 'co-hosting' a live morning show with the station personalities and the South Texas audience.  Of course, he was (as always) campaigning for the Presidency at the time.  

      He was really funny on the air that day, and a nice, relaxed guy to be around.  Campaign Slogan -

      "We are upping our standards ... so up yours."
      Pat Paulsen for President!

      After reading the incredible text of Colbert's WH writers dinner, I was also WOWED!

      I started watching John Stewart about 3 years ago, but in the past year I've become a HUGE fan of the Daily Show AND 'Le Colbear Rapport.'  

      I think it's silly to compare Colbert to somebody in Letterman's role, as I read in a couple comments.  Dave's not really doing a 'character' portrayal...BUT STEPHEN CERTAINLY IS!  And I can only agree with all the 'commenters' I see here, who are completely knocked out by Colbert's sizzling  satirical send-up of 'Wingnut in Wingtips.'  

      I agree with the assessment that the Report is consistently well-written.  Stephen's character is predictably insane in all-too-familiar ways.  Amazingly, Colbert's 'Daily' performance of this character matches the sharpness of the content.  Yet, this clearly artful 'comic actor' seems to have friend and foe alike - over a barrel of laughs, so to speak.  He has a subtly funny way of letting anybody who wants - to be 'in on the joke.'

      No matter the bizarro, over-the-top behavior of politicians AND press on the Colbert Report, the message KNOW that the truth has gotta be even stranger, and what an AWFUL acknowledgement indeed!

    •  Brilliant: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      "Bush is powerless to hurt anybody who doesn't want to be hurt by him."

      at least in a room like that. I particularly liked the mention of Fitzpatrick, and the fact that Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame were absolutely aware of the finesse of it.

  •  colbert will do down in comedic history for this (8+ / 0-)

    they'll talk about it years from now just like lennie bruce and george carlin.

  •  is there anyway i can email this? (0+ / 0-)

    i have a friend out of the country and would love to forward it.

  •  This was the best journalism (5+ / 0-)

    I have seen in over 5 years, and it came from a comedian.  Sad.

  •  just watched the whole video (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, Dvalkure

    It is absolutely devastating.  Colbert is brilliant and fearless.

    I associate [torture] activities with the forces of not only the pathological and depraved, but those who are headed for defeat. --Laura Rozen

    by luddite on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 01:40:53 PM PDT

  •  Unhappily contrarian Colbert fan (0+ / 0-)

    Was it great, or the greatest?  I've argued elsewhere here that it was merely great.

    So tell me: go through the transcript and tell me which jokes you don't think you could ever see on Letterman or SNL's Weekend Update.  Any?

    My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

    by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 01:49:17 PM PDT

    •  i'm sorry (19+ / 0-)

      but there is a huge difference between doing a skit at the tv studio where you work, and standing ten feet from the president doing the very same schtick.  i understand that everyone may not agree, but colbert was already king.  he just annointed himself emperor of comdey.

    •  Not that the material was 'great', (6+ / 0-)

      ...though it undoubtedly was.

      What made it great was his fearlessness in delivering this right to the face of Chimpy and Pickles and the rest of the Killer Klowns.

      Colbert is so good in his delivery, especially on his own show, that anyone watching him could come to believe he truly is a Whitie-Rightie. I believe that's what happened here. Someone in charge of the entertainment was inattentive or didn't understand the nature of Colbert's stuff, or was duped.

      I don't care either way. This was phuqqing BRILLIANT!!

      "Wealthy the Spirit which knows its own flight. Stealthy the Hunter who slays his own fright. Blessed is the Traveler who journeys the length of the Light."

      by CanisMaximus on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 02:03:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  he stuck in the President's face (23+ / 0-)

      It was well-written, yes Letterman has good writers but this was a whole routine that was woven together.  Much of the power of his act was that Colbert kept pointing to the President--that was the act of a warrior. This wasn't some Letterman bullshit this was a guy with incredible courage willing to say fuck you to the fucking Emperor who has the ability and legal right to kill his ass anytime he wants. It's not easy to do that and get the timing right and stay in character.

      There are a number of very clever items. The glacier bit really, really worked because it was unexptected and depended on the rhythm of the other jokes. He framed it by moving away from the President and quickly struck at the most important issue of our time in a way that made the statement--that one really kicked ass. Letterman has never done anything like that from a theatrical point of view. The guy is way superior. Also the bit about suggesting the reporters go and write a novel was a joke that said absolutely everything that there is to be said about the state of the press.

      One more thing, the essence of a good performer is his/her generosity on stage--he gave everything he had--if you've ever been associated with the theatre you will know what I mean--I cried at his performance because it was paced and presented so right for that audience. I've never seen anything like that in my life.

      Om Lokaha Samastaha Sukhino Bhavantu (may all beings in all the worlds be happy)

      by Chris Cosmos on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 02:05:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The President does not have the legal right (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Far left coast, Dvalkure, bluebrain

        to kill Colbert any time he wants.  I guess part of my reaction to posts on Colbert's routine, now that I've seen it, is a visceral (i.e., gut!) reaction against hyperbole.

        Nor did Colbert say "fuck you" to Bush.  He was zinging him, and "close to the edge," as Wolf Blitzer, with whom I am chagrined to agree, said, but he did not go over the line.  I thought the "fiction" zing on the media was a lot of set-up for too little payoff.

        But a brave performance?  I would chew off my own leg before denying it.

        My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

        by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 02:36:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Danby, claro (7+ / 0-)

          Bush also doesn't have the legal right to hold citizens without charges, eavesdrop on our phone calls, or ship prisoners off to foreign countries to be tortured on our behalf.

          But it doesn't stop him, does it?

          Bush doesn't have to do anything to hurt Colbert.  He's got a willing bunch of lickspittles, from Bill Kristol to Jeff Gannon, from Karl Rove to Bill Bennett, from Hugh Hewitt and Michael Medved to a long list of faceless, nameless thugs who think patriotism is delivering "two in back of the head" to someone who would dare criticize the President [note: I've read that very quote on Free Republic.].

          Colbert was funny as hell and has big, big balls.  I've got to salute him.

          •  I'm just going to sit here and be depressed (0+ / 0-)

            by the hyperbole.  I don't care what the diaper-clad denizens of Free Republic bloviate into their keyboards.  We're the reality-based ones, and we should be avoiding hyperbolic statements like the one I addressed.  And this has everything to do with how discussion here is perceived by people whose minds I would like to change.

            My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

            by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 03:25:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  you misunderstand (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              my point is not to indulge in hyperbole though I believe it is a respectable art-form--he does, however have every right to declare Colbert a terrorist. If he does that Colbert has no legal rights and can disspear. Of course, as a practical matter, this won't happen but at some later date when shit hits the fan who knows? My point is that there is nothing legally stopping the executive branch from doing anything it wants because it is a time of war. Of course that is illegal there has been no declaration of war etc., but the President reserves the right to act as-if.

              Om Lokaha Samastaha Sukhino Bhavantu (may all beings in all the worlds be happy)

              by Chris Cosmos on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 03:41:35 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  You know, that's BUSH'S argument (0+ / 0-)

                Mine derives from what Sandra Day O'Connor wrote in Hamdi about war not giving the President a blank check.  He may be able to do these things, but don't call them legal.

                My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

                by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 04:15:01 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Honey you are not going to (0+ / 0-)

              change their minds by avoiding hyperbole. The Avatar training would be a wonderful exercise for you to understand just how rock bottom and unchangeable belief systems really are. Facts just roll off their teflon.

              •  I'm not trying to change the minds of Redstaters (0+ / 0-)

                I'm thinking of the perceptions of the people that I always tell that the dKos community is much more reality-based and non-hyperventilating than those on the right.  Today, I think, is not one of our better days.  Today we sound more like the negative copy of Redstate instead of its intellectual superior.

                My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

                by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 08:42:04 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Not the right to kill him (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          but the power to order it done.

          Colbert,heed my warning. Do not fly in any small planes like JFK Jr.,Paul Wellstone,or the ex governor of Missouri who was running against Ashcroft for the senate,and whose name I am blocking.

          •  Well, he has the power to kill all of us (0+ / 0-)

            by starting a nuclear war.  And lots of people around you have the power to kill you if they want to.  Do you think the President orders particular people bumped off?

            My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

            by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 08:39:44 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm not sure if the president himself (0+ / 0-)

              does but people in his administration probably do. After all good ol' Ike had Patrice Lamumba bumped off.

              •  American citizens. (0+ / 0-)

                Especially prominent entertainers.  Really, we shouldn't be tossing around this kind of accusation loosely.

                My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

                by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 10:54:41 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  'Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?' (0+ / 0-)

              He needn't explicitly order a hit; Henry II didn't actually order the death of Thomas Becket, yet murder in the cathedral ensued.

              (insecure-)Ego-in-Chief Dubya is capable of sinking as low as abysses can go; every time I imagine a line even the spoiled fratboy would not breach e.g. distorting the message of Jesus into its EXACT opposite .... every time I am disappointed.

              Reason w/o fear! "Liberty for wolves is death to the lambs." -Sir Isaiah Berlin

              by Monique Radevu on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 10:19:17 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Tell me how it makes it easier (0+ / 0-)

                to get people to oppose Bush when we go around telling people that he (intentionally or recklessly) has his domestic political opponents killed?  I don't get the strategy.

                My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

                by Major Danby on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 10:59:26 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  sigh ... (0+ / 0-)

                  You're setting up a straw mon (mon, get it? I'm Mon-ique) just in order to knock her down. I do not "go around telling ppl (Dubya) has his domestic political opponents killed"; I just have good reason to believe he considers himself above the law: "If the President does it, it's not illegal", especially since we now so conveniently have a 'permanent emergency'. Atty-General Gonzales et al are clearly enablers in this fraud. & sadly, there is perforce no end to the danger this spawns.

                  I also believe his followers & circle include MANY who feel excused from normal constraints on behavior (Freud's super-ego) because they follow 'a higher law', much as admirers of historic charismatic leaders & ideologies can & do descend to the most brutal savagery because at some level, conscious/unconscious, their bond with the Great One/Great Cause relieves anxiety as to consequence, brings an ultimate permission, so the id has free play. Pol Pot yields the killing fields of Kampuchea, Nazism gives Kristalnacht.

                  See "Freud & the Fundamentalist Urge" by Mark Edmundson in the NY Times magazine 4.30.06, pp. 15-18.

                  See also articles & books detailing the perverse ("the noble lie excuses all") influence of Leo Strauss (1899-1973) & his neo-con acolytes (Richard Perle, Irving & William Kristol, Steven Lenzner, Douglas Feith, Stephen Cambone, Leon Kass, Gary 'PNAC' Schmitt, Alan Keyes, Abe Shulsky, Paul Wolfowitz, et cetera ad nauseum) upon this administration, e.g. "Ignoble Liars - Leo Strauss, George Bush & the philosophy of mass deception" by Earl Shorris, Harper's, June 2004, pp. 65-71

                  The great liberal/Millian historian of ideas, the admirable Isaiah Berlin (1909-1997), was a contemporary & FIRM opponent of Strauss & his views. I'm proud to follow in Sir Isaiah's company.

                  Reason w/o fear! "Liberty for wolves is death to the lambs." -Sir Isaiah Berlin

                  by Monique Radevu on Mon May 01, 2006 at 01:03:40 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Oh, I see the problem (0+ / 0-)

                    I was addressing what you said, not what you meant to say.

                    Very sorry if that puts me on the side of Abu G, Pol Pot, Strauss, Perle, the Kristols, etc.  Surely I shall have to rethink in that case.

                    My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

                    by Major Danby on Mon May 01, 2006 at 07:25:59 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

      •  Great Commentary Chris (5+ / 0-)

        No one on this planet could have done what Stephen did; he truly did give it everything he had, he was breathtaking and, as you aptly said, he was indeed a Warrior.  A courageous and brilliant Warrior.    

      •  Glaciers (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jlukes, Monique Radevu

        I forgot about the glacier bit, that was brilliant.

    •  sum of parts > whole GESTALT (0+ / 0-)

      An artist delivers an extraordinary performance in a difficult venue under adverse conditions, and some pedant nitpicks the script.

      Seems pusillanimous. I am having a knee-jerk impulse to cut class.

      •  Actually, I think you meant to say (0+ / 0-)

        whole > sum of parts.

        I wouldn't bring it up, but you know us nitpicking pedants.

        My apologies to students who took my U.S. Government class in the 90s: evidently the Constitution doesn't limit Presidential power after all. Who knew?

        by Major Danby on Mon May 01, 2006 at 07:23:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Now that's one brave Alpha Male (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, Petronella

    He stood up, walked to the edge of the cliff, took a deep breath...and JUMPED.  Damn if his bungee cord didn't perform beautifully!  And, the poor Chimp had no choice but to defer to him.  Awesome, loved it; a great moment.    

  •  Tremendous! (11+ / 0-)

    When I woke up this morning, and saw the video clip of Colbert's speech to the correspondents' dinner, I was absolutely floored.  That somebody, somewhere, on a TV show that can be seen everywhere, looked straight into the face of George Bush, in front of a roomful of the tame and captive press (who have "ooh'd" and "aah'd" at the fine clothes of the President as his nekkid pecker waved in the breeze) and told him "you sir, are shameful" is inspirational.  

    Clearly the reason the Washington Press Corps was so quiet is because it's hard to laugh when someone looks you in the eye and says "you are a whore", no matter how funny he is when he says it.  But I guarantee that many of the poor excuses for a free press that were sitting in the audience with their hands over their mouths will be thinking about Colbert's comments when they're lying in bed tonight.  And tomorrow.

    Two things:  I really hope that someone has the time to catalogue the comments from the right-wing radio talk shows tomorrow when they get to this topic.  You know they're going to have to say something.  I'm guessing it'll be mostly "Colbert bombed" or "he made a fool of himself", but gasbags like Bill Bennett will just have to go further.  They will not allow Colbert to get away with firing off a fungoo to Justice Scalia.

    Second, I scoured the internet looking for an email address for Colbert or his producers or anyone at his show.  I have to send a letter of thanks.  I'm not a big TV viewer, and I don't even subscribe to cable.  If there's something I want to see I nick it off the internet via bittorrent.  But I think I'm willing to sign up for cable if only to show support for Colbert (and Jon Stewart).  

    Stephen Colbert has released a lot of pressure that's been building behind my eyes these last 5 years.  He deserves a lot of credit.

  •  excellent work (20+ / 0-)

    Great transcript, Frederick.

    I will forward this diary to everyone I know who missed it.

    If I hadn't had to go to work today I would have transcribed it myself.

    The video summary leaves out a few important details though:

    • starting by calling the press crazy nicknames like Bush does;
    • hearing the press ask some biting questions, including "did Karl Rove commit a crime" and the one challenging McClellan on his assertion that Karl Rove had nothing to do with Plamegate;
    • Karl Rove doodling a cupid's heart with Karl + Stephen in the center;
    • He calls Helen "Doubting Thomas" and patronizes her by assuming she is a harmless "old lady" but then she slams him with the famous question--which was really asked of George Bush himself and not at a Scotty Show press conference
    •  the famous (for us old fogies) clip of Dan Rather saying "No Mr. President, are you?"  ("Mr. President" was replaced with "Mr. Colbert".) This is a complicated multiple reference for people old enough to remember it:  1) it shows another time when a television personality spoke pointedly to a sitting President in front of an audience and was called disrespectful by conservatives for doing so, 2) it is a Watergate reference, so it recalls another Republican president with horrible approval ratings, and we know what happened to him, 3) it is a Watergate reference at a time when a brand new Rpug scandal involving hookers at the Watergate was just uncovered a couple of days ago, 4) it's a hat tip to Dan Rather's finest hour even as Rpugs continue to defame him over the way they set him up with the TANG documents, 5) Rather was almost fired by CBS over that remark and TV executives had to meet with White House staffers about the incident, so Comedy Central executives should expect a call from Karl Rove any day now, although I'm sure they'd laugh at any suggestion that Colbert should be fired, since he is a comedian and not a real newscaster.  Bottom line--Colbert was aware that he was taking a professional risk in "talking back" to the president in this way.

    Anyone who wants to make a better stab at the video summary is welcome to try, but now that the video is actually available that may not be necessary.

    Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D. IMPEACH!

    by TrueBlueMajority on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 02:48:04 PM PDT

  •  You need to watch it more than once ... (16+ / 0-)

      I've watched Stephen's monologue three times (I recorded it) and each time I watch it I appreciate his talent and brilliance more.  I watched it live and while the material was brilliant, I was mostly stunned at what he was saying and that he was full-on looking and pointing directly at the President as he was saying it!  Besides stunned, I was actually feeling a bit bad for Stephen since the audience was clearly not amused and appeared to be sending him death rays with their eyes (Bush included).  

    Watching it a second time, I got past the palpable tension in the room and was even more blown away by the uber-clever, damning but oh so funny material and Stephen's unwavering, deadpan delivery.   He said so much in such a short time and every nuance, every gesture, every aspect of his delivery was perfect comical, satirical genius.    

    But the third time, OMFG, Stephen is a gift to all of us. No one, and I mean no one, could have done what he did.  His courage and conviction is to be treasured.  He seized upon a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to use his brilliant, unique talent to send a loud and harsh message directly to those who needed to hear it most.  

    Sadly, as expected, the MSM is barely reporting it, but that’s okay because Bush and the MSM heard every painful, truthful word.

    Stephen Colbert, I send you lots of love rays.  

  •  The Mark Twain of our time... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Creosote, Jlukes

    .. using satire as a lethal weapon.

  •  Are the rightwingers bashing Colbert? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TrueBlueMajority, gmhowell

    It's time to be a Democrat!

    by annefrank on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 03:39:33 PM PDT

    •  Not really and that is so funny too (0+ / 0-)

      GG linked to some sites the other day, and I waded few a bit posted here.  They mostly just say he's bombing and not funny.  They, surprise surprise, just didn't get it.  No one posted excerpts and then criticized it.

      Some people were confused, they thought he was a good guy.  The deepest analysis was in replies to these, people briefly explained it was satire and his style was mocking O'Reilly.

      I posted this in another thread, but where I had expected to be disgusted by what they had to say I mostly found they had nothing substantive to say at all.

  •  Fucking brilliant (6+ / 0-)

    While it's sad that in my lifetime, I have to live through a administration as corrupt, heinous and contemptuous to it's citizens as this one.  But since I'm also a "glass half-full" kinda gal, at least it's also provided me with cutting-edge brilliant wit like Stephen Colbert.

    Man, I from now on, will nod in agreement whenever he talks about his "huge balls of steel" (as he's done before) on his show.  

    "Anyone effin tired of this crap, yet?" IMPEACH!!!!!

    by smugbug on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 03:55:32 PM PDT

  •  OK, here's my two-bit analysis (15+ / 0-)
    1. Colbert has found a way to do the impossible: to satirise the unsatirisable (made up word, but you get my point). We've all been shocked and floored at what these Repugs can do, how stupid and brazen they can be, that they impossible to turn into satire. Well, Colbert did it. That's an act of brilliance. He took it just far enough past what they do in the course of a normal day, that he was able to turn it into satire. Brilliant.
    1. I don't know how he was allowed to speak, but I suspect that he exploited a huge hole in the Repug edifice: those people are territorial chimps, especially Shrub, they respond to animal-level, non-verbal dominance cues. And Colbert has got that schtick down so cold... he really looks and acts and has the voice tone (notice: these are non-intellectual, mammalian cues) just like a wingnut, that it puts those people at ease. Of course they "knew" his schtick... "knew" in an intellecutal sense, but their "gut" didn't throw any alarms because their "gut" told them that underneath the schtick he was just like them. This is why his whole "gut" bit is so devastating: his very presence on that stage was a visceral (pun intended!) reminder of why your "gut" is not what you should rely on for policy decisions. He spoke to the Repug powers that be in their own language-- the language of alpha-male dominance-- and chumped them.

    In short, absolutely brilliant.

    •  gosh, goatchowder (0+ / 0-)

      You are so right about this ~ I watched it with your comment in mind and bingo.
       Thanks for bringing that out for me to see and grasp on a higher than 'gut' level, man ! Or Lady !

      'We're sick and tired of being sick and tired' ~ St.FannyLou Hamer

      by Dvalkure on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 05:30:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Colbert Basically Said, I'm an Imbecile (0+ / 0-)

      Just like you, Mr. President.
      With a smile on his face.
      I agree, the communication between them was on a simian level, primates confronting one another, but Colbert never had to show fang nor rump.

      George W. Bush is just like Forrest Gump. Except that Forrest Gump is honest and cares about other people.

      by easong on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 05:44:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Didn't have to (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Colbert never had to show fang nor rump.

        He didn't have to. Like someone said upthread, he was too busy flinging shit around the place.

        Whatever works.

      •  Bush has used that schtick for so long (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lirtydies, mrkvica
        that it's absolutely brilliant to see someone who has the nerve to agree with him. Witness the painful doppelganger travesty the MSM is pretending was the highlight of this show; Bush has gotten away with lowering his personal expectations bar so far so often only by relying on the expectation of decency in other people. Colbert basically kicked him in the nuts by agreeing that yeah, he's an average schmuck at best. The best part is Bush has thoroughly screwed himself because there's no way for him to disagree now.
    •  Crowd reaction was fascinating too (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, lizah, Monique Radevu

      I watched it again to study the crowd reactions.

      The crowd tension was another effect of Colbert's non-verbal alpha-male cues: Colbert was shouting at them just like a Cable TV pundit or hate-radio jock, or a politician like Shrub at a political rally. Everyone else who spoke at this event-- even Shrub and his stunt double-- was very congenial and soft-voiced. Humans get tense when you yell at them. Instead of loosening up to send ripples of jocularity through the room, Colbert was full-on intense and serious, and spread that vibe through the room.

      Whereas the whole point of the night was for these fake-ass talking heads to feign being out-of-character, in a very Hollywood-talk-show kind of way, Colbert insisted on staying completely in character. If everyone else was there to play, Colbert was there to work.

      Colbert absolutely upstaged everyone there: politicians, media, everyone. He wasn't there to please them. He was there to ass-rape them. The other speakers were playing to the room, and Colbert was playing way past the room, to the TV cameras and to us, out here, his past, present, and future fans.

      He stayed in physical manner-character even during asides which were way out of ideological-character. In other words, he delivered his real attacks on Shrub in the exact same right-wing-alpha-male tone and unsmiling, superior-know-it-all-competitive-jerk manner that he used for delivering his fake attacks on the press and "liberals".  The "glacier" punchline is a stellar example of one of these asides. Deadpan can be very unsettling-- people are uncomfortable when they can't distinguish when someone is kidding and when they are being serious.

      That bit also exploited his violation of the "knee-jerk he-said-she-said/balance" rule that all those corporate-whore celebrities hide behind. They were clearly getting uncomfortable with his relentlessness in attacking the administration. Then, he faked like he was going to break that tension and go attack Jesse Jackson (to be "fair and balanced"?), and instead threw his "glacier" punchline right back in Shrub's face. That was a huge "fuck you".

      By brazenly and unilaterally violating a bunch of social contracts in order to obtain "full-spectrum dominance", Colbert provided a living example of not just Shrub's M.O. but the entire right wing political philosophy-- that of all of Corporate America, the Neocons, and the dispensationalist fundamentalists. Colbert simply and thoroughly took advantage of them, their hospitality, and their goodwill. This is probably the first taste that Shrub and some of his cronies have gotten of what it feels like to be on the receiving end of this shit. Colbert "broke comity", on purpose. He took, greedily and unapologetically, from the commons, for his own gain, without even the slightest indication of shame, any sense of decency, indeed any regard for the feelings of anyone else in that room. It was completely fitting with the character.

      So, was he playing the selfish asshole? No, I think he went beyond that. He was playing the psychopath. In that sense, he did a better job of imitating Shrub (and his "base") than Shrub's "stunt-double" did. Irony is not dead, it's just gone Xtreme.

      This guy is clearly the heir to Peter Sellers.

      In addition to Sellers, I also have a strong suspicion that Colbert has extensively studied and/or admired "The Yes Men", Neil Hamburger, and Devo. Not to mention, "Bob". Oh, and Jonathan Swift too.

      Bravo, Colbert, bravo!

      •  The 4th monkey. (0+ / 0-)

        The 3 monkeys were (in) the audience.

        "3 wise monkeys, in a tree;
        One won't listen, one won't see!
        One won't speak to you or me;
        3 wise monkeys, in a tree.

        "Please, mister monkeys...

        WISE UP!!!!"

        but the genuinely wise FOURTH MONKEY,

        ~~~~ HOLDS UP A MIRROR. ~~~~

        I largely agree with goatchowder's assessment - that list of influences certainly resonates;
        I'd add that Megamerican (he's trustigious!) Stephen Colbert is also building on the strategy of but with SUPREME execution.

        Reason w/o fear! "Liberty for wolves is death to the lambs." -Sir Isaiah Berlin

        by Monique Radevu on Mon May 01, 2006 at 01:38:16 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Two bits? (0+ / 0-)

      More like a whole houseful

      with very good hardwood flooring.

  •  Colbert interview on 60 Minutes CBS RIGHT NOW n/t (0+ / 0-)

    Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D. IMPEACH!

    by TrueBlueMajority on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 04:34:06 PM PDT

  •  Colbert on 60 minutes (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Creosote, KB, lilnubber, lirtydies, Basil, Dvalkure

    Wow I just saw him for the first time out of character.  He said that when he was 10 his father & two brothers were killed in a plane crash (commercial flight) & he just wanted to "cheer my mom up"

    Colbert is about to replace Jon Stewart as my most favorite person in the world.

    It's not easy being a Floridian.

    by lawstudent922 on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 04:49:19 PM PDT

  •  I saw it too (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Creosote, KB, Dvalkure

    He also said that he wouldn't let his kids watch his show because he did not want them to believe what they would see him doing on the show. The were to young to understand satire. The man has real morals and character. Wow.

  • (5+ / 0-)

    For serving as an example, telling it like it is, I've thrown together a site to collect thank yous for Mr. Colbert.

    Hopefully this site will help boost awareness of this story, which is already being distorted in the mainstream press.

    Some of you may know the drill.

    Go over and say thanks.

  •  Quicktime or podcast version (0+ / 0-)

    Does anyone know of a downloadable quicktime or ipod version?

  •  correction for you (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    And Suzanne Moll (sp?).

    Her name is Suzanne Malveaux - so it was a little play on words: Suzanne Mal-HELLO!  (the joke being, she's a hottie)
    Thanks for the transcript...

  •  Holy crap -- a media personality with courage! (0+ / 0-)

    Very satisfying to see Colbert stick it to all those assholes, in their face, unintimidated.  That was great!

    Anybody seen my owl?

    by Minerva on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 05:53:49 PM PDT

  •  Cool! Now we'll see if they can catch him.. (0+ / 0-)

    ...with a 15th century Koran in his secret chamber..... lol

  •  Fake News Wins Again (0+ / 0-)

    I credit Jon Stewart with shutting down CNN's "Crossfire".

    That roast from Colbert ought to embarrass some people into action.

    Three cheers for the court jesters!

    And I can't wait to see what's next.

  •  Oh. My. Fucking. God. I would love (0+ / 0-)

    to see some reaction photos of bush and his bitch-wife, Laura from that dinner...

    Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right

    by darthstar on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 07:33:40 PM PDT

  •  Just love these parts (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message, that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound -- with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.

    Now, there may be an energy crisis. This president has a very forward-thinking energy policy. Why do you think he's down on the ranch cutting that brush all the time? He's trying to create an alternative energy source. By 2008 we will have a mesquite-powered car!

    32% means the glass -- it's important to set up your jokes properly, sir.

    A reference to the "We won't be fooled twice" mess-up?

    Here's to you, Reverend Robertson. Jesus doesn't even watch your show. - Capitol Steps

    by lirtydies on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 08:04:08 PM PDT

    •  Then again (0+ / 0-)

      I love the whole damn thing. Bravo, Steve Colbert!

      Here's to you, Reverend Robertson. Jesus doesn't even watch your show. - Capitol Steps

      by lirtydies on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 08:04:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I honestly thought he flubbed it... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, lizah

      but when you read that... its even more biting satire.

      "It's important to set up your jokes properly..." OH MY GOD!!! LOL!!!

      How about the WMD "joke." That's what struck me when I read it.

      You know, seeing the performance was one thing. But when you really read what Colbert said, this is just freakin' amazing.

      Nearly every line cut very very deep.

      "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross." -- Sinclair Lewis

      by Dunbar on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 08:39:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  32%--------------- (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Creosote, Dunbar

    The "Backwash" President!!

    "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stomping on a human face -- forever." G.Orwell

    by FuddGate on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 08:26:10 PM PDT

  •  He's a hero (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Creosote, sam07, lirtydies, mrkvica, lizah

    This Press Corps dinner is usually a great big love-fest, showing we rubes that politics is just a game played by the ones in the know.  So people from all sides of the aisle come together and laugh at the human foibles of the President.  Ha Ha.  All well and good when the President is a person of decency who you just happen to disagree with.  But to stand there next to a criminal and pretend like it's a great big joke legitimizes the criminal.  I just read the transcript with my wife and we both stopped laughing half-way through -- not because it wasn't hilarious, but because it was far more acid than funny.  That Colbert had the guts to cross the line and not play along; that he had the balls to make everyone uncomfortable instead of using laughter to let the president and the press off the hook for their derelictions; that he had the acuity to understand that to get up and tell a few jokes, shake a few hands and kiss a few asses would make him a sell-out and a sap (and that the press's and politicians' eagerness to do that is so much a part of what has gone so very very wrong) -- makes him a man of staggering integrity.

    •  my thoughts exactly (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, lizah, Monique Radevu

      I laughed a lot, but there were moments of sheer awe.  Slack-jawed, not breathing, unbelieving AWE.
      Some commented upstream that the audience was quiet because they were angry at Colbert.  When I watched I saw people who just couldn't believe what the fuck was being said right in bush's face.  To his face. To all of their lying faces.  That's how it made me feel, anyway.

      Staggering integrity indeed.  And staggering courage.

  •  just one minor correction about the Helen video (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    thanks for doing the transcript of the "audition video."  one minor correction though, that I thought was funny and a moment of straight comedy.  I intended to mention it in my previous post about the video but I guess I forgot.

    Colbert reaches his car, and fumblingly attempts to open it with his key.  He is in such a desperate hurry to get in the car that he fumbles with the keys and drops them on the ground.  When he picks them up he looks back and Helen is even closer and in his frantic rush he just can't get the keys in the lock.

    Just as his anxiety is getting completely out of control he suddenly remembers he has a keyless remote--so he just pushes the button on the keychain and the car unlocks easily with the usual double squeak noise.  He jumps in and locks the door, and continues to fumble trying to get the car started. He finally does so, and looks up to see Helen standing in front of the car, notepad in hand.

    I laughed out loud -- he struggled so desperately with the keys when he didn't even need them!  Ordinary visual comedy in the midst of high level political satire.

    Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D. IMPEACH!

    by TrueBlueMajority on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 09:24:32 PM PDT

  •  thanks; will go down in history n/t (0+ / 0-)

    Bush gives pubic hair a bad name.

    by seesdifferent on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 10:08:42 PM PDT

  •  Frederick--a tiny correction (0+ / 0-)

    (Colbert turns to Rove) Karl, pay attention please! (Rove is seeing drawing a heart with "Karl + Stephen" written on it.)

    "Seen," not "seeing."

    Thanks so much for the transcript!

  •  here's QuickTime / iPod movie (0+ / 0-)

    I re-encoded from a pretty good quality 400MB torrent I got earlier today.

    I really don't have the bandwidth for this, but here goes anyhow

    It's 156 MB, and I have 32KB/s outbound, meaning it'll take 83 minutes to get one copy out...

    you can try the torrent:

    or please only download this iPod movie version if you can mirror it for others too.

  •  When I first saw Colbert.. (6+ / 0-)

    ..was going to get his own show I had great doubts.  I didn't always see him as funny.  I always sensed an insecurity and an awkward highbrowness in his performances.  I also saw an intense determination in him that was also "not funny" whenever I saw him.  He left me laughing some times, but always curious.

    Not to sound arrogant, but I am a pretty smart person, not percieved as very funny because I am pretty serious much of the time.  When I do try to be funny it is often too silly or strange.  Sort of like "what the hell was that" is what you would think.  Thats how I percieved Colbert: too smart to be funny.  Not smart enough to know he wasn't.  That was probably my arrogance again.

    But he seemed to desparately want his own show.  I always thought, poor guy, thats going to be embarrassing.  It wasn't my wish though, cause he seemed like a great guy, just too confident in himself.

    His first show was... strange, but not too uncomfortable.  I enjoyed it, but it was still "what the hell was that?"  But he was working so hard at whatever it was he was trying to do.

    As politics became more dramatic, as the Republican personalities made more and more news, his show became funnier.  The topics of the day fell perfectly in place with his character on the show.  I was starting to get it.  As the Republicans became more visible in the media for who they are, Colbert became more understandable for where he was trying to go, what he was desparately trying to get out to us.

    I often wondered why John Stewart, a comic genius, had so much confidence in Colbert.  Why the promotions at the end of his show to lead in.

    A few months ago I saw John Stewart taking an interview of someone in the late 90's, I can't even remember who he was interviewing.  But I remember how scholarly and intelligent and well stated his questions were.  I was so impressed with the intellectual side of Stewart shown I thought "he really is brilliant.  thats why he is so great."  He's just so goofy on the daily show, but his guests are from an intellectuals selection.  I first caught Stewart after he caught his stride on the Daily Show, so I can't speak about much more than that.

    Recently I saw a clip of John Stewart doing a stand
    up routine from back around Desert Storm.  Here I saw a different Stewart.  An obviously intelligent guy, desparately wanting to interact with his audience on a snappier wittier informed level, but not able to do it well because of an awkwardness with the humor.  That is what I used to see in Colbert.  

    Unlike our President, John Stewart obviously grew in skill.  What an inspiration.  A brilliant leader.  Who else can feed us a diet of serious topics and keep our attention but a polished professional commedian of the first order.  He knew years before the Daily Show what he wanted to do and pursued to improve enough to get it done.

    I now know why Stewart brought us Colbert.  Same quality, the drive for excellence.  Not just brainless humor, but probably the brain first, then the humor.  Like Stewart.  Colbert brought us what he has been working a half lifetime on.  We are watching masterpieces.  Like Mozart or Tchiacovski.  I've been laughing alot with show now.  2 shows, a new hour of power.

    I believe Colbert immitates GOP so well that he actually does have some of them believing that he is on their side.  Some of his GOP guests don't seem to get that, or at least are put off guard by the familiarity of Colberts character.  I believe that many of the GOP are that shallow in their ability to percieve what others are thinking.  An insensitive lot.  Many of the GOP don't know there are people that can see straight through their bullshit because they can't see straight through the bullshit themselves.  If you didn't understand that last line please read it again.  Most people are idiots, or so they really do believe.  

    It's got to be very uncomfortable for them to realize that America is not full of idiots.  That once you get out of that 1/3 of the bottom of the "glass", where the backwash is, there are some that are not idiots and they're watching them.  And they don't carry pitchforks.

    It's got to be very unconfortable for the GOP to see someone behave like them and seem like them so much and say all the right things and be so wrong.  To be dead on, and dead wrong.  As another comment said, Colberts performance was so bulletproof, particularly in every pointed "joke" being right on and undeniable, and even to his confidence in looking the president right in the eyes as if he was a real GOP ally, that I suspect the TV and radio clown shows will not air a single second of it for fear it might be viral enough to chip even further away at their "idiot" base.  For some GOP it could be like realizing the man next you is not a man but a terminator.

    It was probably so uncomfortable to see themselves that congruently seen as so bad that it will spoil that behavior for some of them, perhaps chimpy himself.  I wonder if Colbert knew how sophisticated his attack was.  I bet he did.

    I believe Colbert and Stewart always were aiming at something higher than others had seen before.  These men are modern marvels.  Carefully crafted.  Informed at a level only a modern progressive can handle; they know what we are saying.  Intelligent only the way a modern intellect can handle;  they take (not get) global warming completely.  Not Mark Twains, but men of our times.  

    I have kept a sort of "most respected" list in my memory for about the last 15 years.  I don't want to recite it (other than names like Twain, Brokaw, Koppel, Murrow, Jesus, Ghandi, Robin Williams, Bill Cosby, you get the idea) because some you haven't heard of and I don't want to have to explain any of it.  Stewart got there a few years ago.  And Steven Colbert just made it on that list.

    Most people are idiots... But don't tell them. It'll spoil all the fun for those of us who aren't.

    by d3n4l1 on Sun Apr 30, 2006 at 11:03:51 PM PDT

  •  Couldn't sleep (0+ / 0-)

    so I'm up at 3:20 am and thought I'd watch the whole thing. Incredible! He didn't hold back anything. No wonder there were a lot of uncomfortable people.

    Could this be the start of something? He ripped Bush a big one and is still around. And his ratings will go through the roof.

    Maybe others will see that if Colbert got away with this then they can certainly question Bush on some issues without being sent to some secret prison in Europe.

    -4.25, -6.87: Someday, after the forest fire of the Right has died we'll say "Whew, I'm happy that's over."

    by CanYouBeAngryAndStillDream on Mon May 01, 2006 at 03:20:12 AM PDT

  •  At least... (0+ / 0-)

    At least it was funnier than Jon Stewarts unfortuante foray onto Crossfire.

  •  punctuation quibble (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rita in DC

    Can I humbly suggest that you put quotes around "I did look it up, and that's not true."  The "I" in that statement isn't Colbert, it's the audience.

  •  This Diary Mentioned in Washington Post Article (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Frederick, gpclay, Rita in DC

    By columnist Dan Froomkin.

    From Page 2: Daily Kos blogger Frederick (with hotlink) seems to have the most extensive transcript of Colbert's talk. Video of Colbert is widely available, for instance at for instance at Crooks and Liars and YouTube.

    See All Kidding Aside for complete article.

  •  What did he say in this segment... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Joe Wilson is here, Joe Wilson right down here in front, the most famous husband since Desi Arnaz. And of course he brought along his lovely wife Valerie Plame. Oh, my god! Oh, what have I said? I, gee Mineti [looks horrified] I am sorry, Mr. President, I meant to say he brought along his lovely wife Joe Wilson's wife. Patrick Fitzgerald is not here tonight? OK. Dodged a bullet.

    It sounded like "I, gee Mineti" and I am not sure what that means. It might be important.

    So I am going to ask the audience.

    Does anyone know what he said?


    •  Beats me (0+ / 0-)

      You're right. I heard that, but left it out because I didn't know what it meant, how to spell it, or how many words it was.  Maybe someone can enlighten us?

      When we talk about war, we're really talking about peace. George W. Bush

      by Frederick on Mon May 01, 2006 at 11:42:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't know how to spell it (0+ / 0-)

        but I have heard it before--it is a thing that people say to avoid taking the Lord's name in vain when they are about to say "Jesus Christ".

        When the first syllable slips out and you hear yourself say "Gee" -- you correct yourself by saying Manetti or whatever it is instead of completing "...-sus Christ."

        Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D. IMPEACH!

        by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 02, 2006 at 10:43:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Sounds like one of those cornball (0+ / 0-)

      expressions from the square square 50s.  Like what Jimmy Olson or Beaver would say.  Very republican.

      Jimenetti! Jimminy!! Jimminy Christmas!!!

      God knows I need a crutch at times To help this gimpy soul of mine along But not a Burning Truth That we must kill each other over.-Ric Masten

      by deminmarineland on Tue May 02, 2006 at 12:30:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Giminetti Baking Company est. 1925 (0+ / 0-)

      kinda like man-oh-manishevitz!!

      Ron Suskind is a great writer. I'm not him.

      by suskind on Tue May 02, 2006 at 06:17:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  and congrats on the Froomkin mention, Frederick (0+ / 0-)

    you did a lot of hard work and people all over the blogosphere are indebted to you, especially the ones who don't have cable and couldn't see C-Span, and the people with dial up who can't stream from YouTube.

    good job.  and you saved me from having to do it!  thanks!

    Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D. IMPEACH!

    by TrueBlueMajority on Tue May 02, 2006 at 10:48:29 PM PDT

    •  Thanks (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      That was pretty cool. Froomkin mentioned me once before, actually. That was when I had my blog, BeatBushBlog, active, and Froomkin mentioned that I'd broken the story that Dubya had hired the same criminal defense lawyer (James Sharp) as his old buddy Ken Lay had.

      When we talk about war, we're really talking about peace. George W. Bush

      by Frederick on Wed May 03, 2006 at 04:13:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Used your transcript to create a video. (0+ / 0-)

    Created a video Colbert Review regarding Colbert's tribute to Bush. Your transcript was very useful when doing so, and I stuck a reference to it in credits. Just so ya know, 'cause I like to know when people benifit using my work.

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