Monday, July 14, 2008


The national topic of the day -the infamous New Yorker cover

Is the cover racist? An inflammatory attack on Obama? Some of his supporters think so.

I think that before anyone is allowed to become a political activist they should be required to take a basic lit class and learn about satire and irony. Their heart conditions might benefit.

It's not an attack on Obama. It's a comment on the ridiculous nature of some of the attacks on him.

The New Yorker caters to a semi-elite literate crowd. Everybody else will only see it in light of the hysteria and the media coverage. It will convince nobody that Obama is a Muslim terrorist, nor that Michelle Obama is a closet Angela Davis. The crowd who believe they are radicals, don't read the New Yorker.


Addendum: Obama was on Larry King tonight and they discussed the New Yorker cover.
KING: But I've heard a lot of others comment on it. We haven't heard you speak about it yet. That "New Yorker" cover which depicts you and your wife, and you dressed in a Muslim outfit, your wife in a kind of military outfit, Osama bin Laden's picture burning, what do you make of that?

SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D-IL), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, I know it was The New Yorker's attempt at satire. I don't think they were entirely successful with it. But you know what? It's a cartoon, Larry, and that's why we've got the First Amendment.

And I think the American people are probably spending a little more time worrying about what's happening with the banking system and the housing market, and what's happening in Iraq and Afghanistan, than a cartoon.

So I haven't spent a lot of time thinking about it.

KING: But didn't it personally sting you?

OBAMA: No. You know, we've -- one of the things when you're running for president for almost two years is, you get a pretty thick skin.

And, you know, I've seen and heard worse.

I do think that, you know, in attempting to satirize something, they probably fueled some misconceptions about me instead.

Personally, I doubt it. But overall, a very grown-up response.

Well, Obama, who we do consider a typical reader of The New Yorker, non? has made his statement. He needs to chill. But I guess he had to respond. Jesse is far more repugnant, but that comment was probably hard-wired male 'law of the jungle' stuff. Gotta love it. Not boring. How about Ventura against Frankle, lol.
Obama says it's tasteless and offensive, which it probably is. But you're right that it's not going to sway anybody.
McCain's chiming in too.

Any excuse to attack the liberal elite.
In order for satire to work, you have to have readers smart enough to understand it.

At any rate they should have known that it would be inflamitory... Oh, they did? and thats why they did it?...

I still don't approve.
The New Yorker readers are smart enough. Everyone else might not be.

In Minnesota, Ventura may actually save Franken's ass.
Right on Eric!
I could see it as perpetuating a false stereotype of Obama. My hope is that most New Yorker magazine readers can consider the topic on a deeper lever than simply jumping to conclusions.

This seems to be the election season for political correctness - Welcome to the Age of Sensitivity.
What, me worry?
Those elitist suckers may have meant for it to be satire, but it is more truth than poetry. Obamanation is a radical leftist and racist.
This probably won't sway any votes at this point, but it is still tasteless and far too many racists in this country will seize upon it as vindication for their bigotry and from The New Yorker, no less. I received a forwarded e-mail this morning which was originally satire but is now reported as a direct quote from Obama as to why he doesn't wear a flag pin and doesn't like the Star Spangled Banner. It has been going around the internet since October as fact. Should we start forwarding Borowitz' work as fact?
i think its about political INcorrectness, not correctness.

12% of americans believe that obama was sworn in to congress on a koran!

39% of americans think that obama was once muslim.

im trying to figure out whether its the media's fault, or if many americans are simply gullible and will take everything rush limpaw says as fact.
It is an attack insofar as anyone with a modicum of understanding of the American people knows that most Americans will miss the point, thus turning the cover into a tool by the opposition to reinforce every smear of Obama that exists. The New Yorker did a great disservice to our future.
So the New Yorker should temper its content because people who don't even read their magazine are too stupid to understand it?

Look, I agree that it's over the top. But anybody dumb enough to be led astray by the cover is easy meat for the grinder anyway.
I think the cover was very well done and funny.I doubt there is a subscriber who didn't get it. I've always thought that satire and nuanced language is too subtle for many Americans, especially those who watch Fox news. Of course, they don't read the New Yorker,either. That's one of the problems that Obama has, and I think is becoming aware of. He's not a black and white thinker, but sees things as more nuanced. Americans don't get that. They are used to sound bites and being manipulated by the media.
Even if we judge a presidential contender not by the color of his skin but by the content of his character, Obama is too thin-skinned to be President.
And so what if he WERE muslim? Or Athiest for that matter? I don't want to discuss religion with a presidential candidate - period.

It was Senator Keith Ellison that was sworn in on a Qu'ran - Thomas Jefferson's Qu'ran to be exact! If it was good enough for Jefferson's library, then it's good enough for the Library of Congress.

I tired of politics being infused with topics that are more or less irrelevant to politics. Leave your discussions of religion and blow-jobs at home. For that reason, I don't think the New Yorker should have even bothered with the front cover. But then again, I haven't even read the article.
Blow jobs? Where?
God Eric you are such a pre-dick-able lib. Wrong as usual. Me and my anglo-redneck-hic's neo cons always read the New Yorker,Mother Jones,Earth First Gazzettt,Eco News and your blog. WEEE-B-DOWN wit -yooo-bad self.
The thing is, all the people who "are meant for the meat grinder," all those people who take satire and circulate it as fact against Obama, all those people and all their friends and associates are VOTERS!! And votes are what will get Obama into office, or not.

I don't think the New Yorker cover will be used that way, but the rumors-turned-fact certainly are used that way among the average conservative Joe (that he's a Muslim, that he hates white people, that he isn't patriotic, etc.). Mistrust of Obama, fear that he will be the downfall of the country) is built this way among these ordinary people who vote, and no matter how vanilla, bumbling and presidentially unlikely McCain gets, Obama scares them and they feed their own fear with these rumors.

I know this because I have relatives who send me their conservative spam. There are intelligent people who never bother to question this damaging "information."
That's the whole point Karol. The rumors are already out there. The cover takes those rumors and reveals them for their stupidity.
God Eric you are such a pre-dick-able lib. Wrong as usual. Me and my anglo-redneck-hic's neo cons always read the New Yorker,Mother Jones,Earth First Gazzettt,Eco News and your blog. WEEE-B-DOWN wit -yooo-bad self.

The New Yorker has nothing in common with any of those other periodicals. Totally different animal. You would know that if you'd ever actually read it.
Karol - what 2:53 said.
Do you think those folks I describe are likely to read the New Yorker and see the error of their ways? Hardly. Not a New Yorker reader among the ones I know.

Further, I would hazard a guess that New Yorker readers were already aware of the stupidity of such rumors. I haven't read the article by the way, but I have to wonder if its purpose is to alert us to the stupidity of said rumors. Seems redundant.
We got de Obama's in da House!!!
"Do I think this is racist or inflammatory?" Does the Bush Administration lie?
its a funny cartoon because of its absurdity. the sad thing is that there are knuckledraggers among us who actually think the cartoon is accurate(or they want to believe it due to their racist beliefs).
If only Mohammed or the Koran had appeared in the cartoon.
I doubt the Obama's could disgrace the White House any worse than the Clintons.
You think that's offensive?

Try this!
OMG! I had forgotten about McCain calling his wife the "C" word. Don't all our conservative and religiously whacko family and friends deserve a truthful e-mail reminding them how this "officer and gentleman" speaks to his wife?
I dont have a problem with the cover. He's got my vote. If that cover brings more readers to the New Yorker then at long last we may stop the dumbing down of the country. Really good writing there. They crank out this mag every week. That's amazing.
Mccain also made a disparaging joke about Chelsea Clinton when Bill was first President. She was around 12. He did apologize...
We shouldn't lose sight of the fact that they do have Sey Hersh there reporting the facts while everyone else is still printing White House press releases.
Please post any McCain screw ups you can think of. It's time to pay all those conservatives back for the smearing e-mail forwards they have sent over the years knowing they would offend and refused to even acknowledge the falsehood when proven. Only truthful stuff, of course.
McCain would cut the secret service.
Look at what I found :)


It does go to the issue of temperament.
It doesn't matter who reads the New Yorker. The cover is probably being shown and talked about everywhere.

I would imagine that Fox is loving it.
Again Eric,you are showing yourself to be just another heraldonut. If your clients get that same lack of perception and conclusion with out facts that you use to wrongly deduce we don't read the New Yorker you are ripping them off.
Heraldo reads the New Yorker?
Who could read The New Yorker and still support neocons?
to 5:17pm I doubt the Obama's could disgrace the White House any worse than the Clintons.

Disgrace the White House? disgrace this country? that guy is still in the White House. Worst and most dangerous president in our history. I don't know if we'll ever recover. And my barber bet me $100 McCain will win. It's unbelievable to think America would do this AGAIN!!
Get a life, everyone. The cover is a joke, one of many satirical New Yorker covers. Why must every single thing that refers to either candidate cause a storm of commentary. What a nation of whiners.
Let me see if I have this right. Intelligent people are so stupid they will see that cover and think Obama is a Muslim. Unless they are smart enough to have a subscription to The New Yorker. Then all bets are off.
Ed & Eric both understand that political satire is often embedded in the New Yorker's cover art. On the July 21st issue the artist and magazine editors are making fun of the absurd rumors floating about regarding Obama and his wife. It does seem that Obama campaign spokespeople can a little thin-skinned about the mud slinging that comes with American politics.
More likely the Obama felt compelled to condemn it as offensive to play to the lowest common denominator. McCain too.
Ed, go buy a box of Merlot, a package of hotdogs and go entertain yourself!
Satire is intended to provoke and by that standard the cover obviously scored exceptionally. I hope I can make it to Northtown Books in time to get a copy for myself.
Does anybody know anything about the article inside? All these people who read the New Yorker or pretend to?
Online Version - Free

Obama article

Obama article
Nobody reads the New Yorker but a lot of people look at the cartoons.
what's rather piquant is the parade of commentators bemoaning the cover. Look, this is presidential politics and world diplomacy. If you can't handle a little satire, and if you think your candidate can't take it, stay in the sandbox.
As usual, my New Yorker is late. It's frustrating always hearing about what's in it, before I get to see it. Sy Hersh is always interviewed 100 times before I get it. The US mail is horrendous in SoHum. Is there an article about Obama in it? The covers don't usually have attached articles.
what we need to deal with is the economy,the war,seems like this country just cant and wont get past petty bullshit,and this includes all races..WAKE UP AMERICA..only we ourselves can clean up this mess
The New Yorker Obama issue has an excellent article on what makes Obama tick and his rise in Chicago politics to where he is now. Also, Terry Gross had the author of the article on her show, July 14. Poscast. After this article, anyone who thinks Obama is this warm and fuzzy candidate is living in a cave. He astute, ambitious, calculating and a consumate politican - as we are witnessing as we speak - and his team is right there with him. A Democrat that fights, how refreshing. The question is if he and his team are more talented than Mr. Rove. Stay tuned...
In an attempt to poke at you and force you to lighten up I offer the following:

email from Ireland to the brethren in the States...a point to ponder despite your political affiliation:
'We, in Ireland , can't figure out why people are even bothering to hold an election in the United States .
On one side, you have a pants wearing lawyer, married to a lawyer who can't keep his pants on, who just lost a long and heated primary against a lawyer who goes to the wrong church who is married to yet another lawyer who doesn't even like the country her husband wants to run.
Now...On the other side, you have a nice old war hero whose name starts with the appropriate Mc terminology, married to a good looking younger woman who owns a beer distributorship.
What in Lords name are ye lads thinking over there in the colonies??
I think that the MSM fed public is too obsessed with the Jolie twins to be concerned with the cover of the New Yorker.
Very postmodern cover.
Sy Hersh: every week a new conspiracy. He's the guy you call in Washington if you want to spread nasty gossip.
today, the michael medved show spread rumors that obama's money comes from iran, saudi arabia and other middle eastern countries, but not from americans. lies are being told DAILY about obama and people eat it up. its scary to think about.

the sean hannity show, TODAY told its listeners that obama was muslim before joining the christian church.

lies need to be challenged. dont let rascist relatives and friends get away with lies!!!!
Sy Hersh, if his accuracy record was translated to baseball terminology he would be batting 1000. If you aren't aware of how spot on he has been, go back and read his archives.
They have to make up lies to smear him because they can't find anything truthful to hold against him unlike their hot tempered McSame with documented and video taped history of inappropriate behavior and explosions.
Nobody reads the New Yorker but a lot of people look at the cartoons.

I read it. Lots of people read it.
Yeah right and I've got a bridge to sell you.
Okay. Whatever.
I couldn't find a copy of the New Yorker anywhere today. I finally tried Borders and they had three copies left. Only two after me. They said it was "selling like hot cakes."
Okay. Whatever.

That's your answer for everything, isn't it? Tattoo it on your forehead!
Well, it's my response to someone calling me a liar over a very trivial point.

I'm off to bed to read the Obama article in the New Yorker. But then you don't believe me. Just pretend I'm off to watch MASH reruns on TV.
Nothing wrong with M*A*S*H reruns Eric. Are you saying one cannot enjoy that show AND enjoy the New Yorker in the same evening?
Eric, When did you get your New Yorker? I still haven't gotten mine and I'm annoyed.

For those of you who only read the cartoons or don't read it at all, check it out. The articles are wide ranging covering very diverse topics. I'll look at an article, saying to myself, this doesn't interest me, and then I'll get totally sucked in.
I read the New Yorker faithfully but I never look at the cartoons or watch MASH reruns.
Admit it, you just buy it for the naked girls.
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