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May 11, 2009


Well, Brendan may not have found Sykes's comments about Limbaugh funny, but President Obama seemed to. And today, Press Secretary Gibbs didn't appear to mind that Sykes distorted Limbaugh's comment to imply that Limbaugh wants the country to fail, nor that he is guilty of treason, nor that his kidneys should fail. Gibbs limited his criticism to saying that 9/11 shouldn't be the subject of comedy.

Whether it's Rush Limbaugh or the GM and Chrysler secured creditors, the White House fights bare-knuckle.

Rob: The White House certainly does, no matter who's president.

"loathsome" is a most apposite word for Sykes's "joke". Maybe she wanted to show she could be just as vile as Limbaugh.

What's good for the goose is good for the gander

She gave him a taste of his own medicine

Turnabout is fair play


The kidneys thing was too much, but the rest was right on target.

"..Sykes distorted Limbaugh's comments to imply that Limbaugh wants the country to fail."

How were Limbaugh's comments "distorted?" Limbaugh HOPES, not thinks, that Obama's policies will fail. There's a difference. If the policies of an American president (ANY American president) fails, then America fails.

skylights and rone - you may be right when you compare Limbaugh to Sykes, but the important comparison is Bush vs. Obama. Bush never under any circumstances laughed at "jokes" about his political opponents getting sick or dying. In fact, I cannot recall Bush approving of anything mean that was said or written about even his natiest critics in the media. Based on this incident, Obama seems not to be as nice as Bush.

Republican President Bush:

"Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be somewhere."

"Nope, no weapons over there"

"Maybe under here?"

4294 American troops killed because of Republican Bush's "joke" that lied US into the Iraq War.

That doesn't include:

Republican Bush's "joke"/lie killing over 100,000 Iraqis.

Republican Bush's "joke"/lie misdirecting American troops out of AFghanistan.

Republican Bush's Iraq "joke"/lie leaving Afghanistan prey to the Taliban.

Republican Bush's Iraq "joke"/lie leaving nuclear armed Pakistan prey to the Taliban.

Republican Bush's Iraq "joke"/lie leaving tens of thousands of American troops wounded.

Republican Bush's Iraq "joke"/lie deteriorating America as a world power.

Bush: "“Nope, no weapons over there”".

And the sycophantish right wing media LAUGHED.

Where were you then, Brendan?

Oh, that's right, playing footsie with the Villagers.

Right winger's "jokes" kill.


Right winger's short term memory doesn't remember Republican President Bush's "jokes" at tht same White House Correspondent's Dinner about 'missing WMDs'.

Bush: "“Nope, no weapons over there”".

And the sycophantish right wing media LAUGHED.

Obama may have laughed, but we don't know if he was laughing because he genuinely thought it was funny, or if he was doing it out of courtesy for the preforming comedian.

Brendan is right, it's inexcusable for either side to act this way. So lets keep this in context. The people who screwed up here were Sykes and the "oh, it's just a joke so let's not take this seriously" media.

I'm sure we'll have many fingers to point at Obama and say, "Look, he screwed up here," but I don't think this is one of them.

News Reference, are you aware that for many years Limbaugh's right hand man has been a black man? Are you aware that he chose a black person to officiate at his marriage a few years ago? He didn't choose these people as a PR tactic. He doesn't make a fuss about them. It seems unlikely that Limbaugh's a racist.

Brendan is, once again, correct, and Yglesias is wrong. Sykes's routine didn't wish for Limbaugh's kidneys to fail because of his support for waterboarding, she was riffing on his statement about wanting Obama to fail. Yglesias is awfully eager to bail out Sykes, just as Stacy seems pretty eager to give Obama a pass for laughing at Sykes's comments. If Bush had laughed at a tasteless joke or a sexist joke or a joke characterizing his political opponent as a terrorist, would people excuse it as a simple act of courtesy?

Yglesias does make one good point about Sykes. Her most pointed barb against the President was that she didn't want to see his nipples. Sykes, an outspoken lesbian, was standing within spitting distance of a President who shares the views of Miss California USA about same sex marriage. Way to speak truth to power, there, Wanda!

It seems unlikely that Limbaugh's a racist.

Than he should stop making racist comments and he should stop using racism to push the Republican agenda.

----- ----- ----- -----
And Brendan, it's your site, so removing my comment, as you've done, is your right.

But lets be very clear, Wanda Sykes specifically said, "you can't defend torture." She went on to make a joke ridiculing those that defend torture.

Right winger Limbaugh explicitly defended the Abu Ghraib TORTURE PRISON where low level nobody's were prosecuted for the torture crimes that Limbaugh defended.

There's NO comparison between Limbaugh's rhetoric and Wanda Sykes's rhetoric.

Perhaps you can explain that to the board that controls Clear Channel and get them to clean up the loathsome daily, national right wing commentary that sounds like coded "cut down the tall trees" rhetoric.

Brendan, you're too generous to Yglesias. His update states, "In an updated version of the post, Nyhan focuses his ire on the accusing Limbaugh of treason point." But treason is never mentioned in your update; it focusses on terrorism and physical harm. You mention treason only in your original post. Rather than saying he was too harsh on your original post, Yglesias suggests it was you who changed your focus. Forgive me for being blunt, but that's dishonest and self-serving of him.

It must be hard work to be offended so easily. Remember that Rush Limbaugh is not a politician (despite the general consensus that he is the de facto leader of the GOP), he's a lying, treacherous, drug-addled windbag whose daily show does nothing but distort the words and actions of democrats and those republicans who offend him. This makes just about everything about him fair game. Sykes is doing nothing here other than fire back at Limbaugh with exactly the same tactics he uses, daily. He's accused every democrat of treason, he's accused democrats of being america-hating terrorists, he's described waterboarding as nothing more than a trip in the dunk tank, and he's wished ill on many, many people. If a politican or even a commentator said this, sure, it's over the line, but a comedian, at a roast-like forum? And you expect liberals to be offended? Please, after years of being accused of all of this on a daily basis, we're a little jaded, but mostly bemused by the newfound sensitivity of the right wing.

Bush never under any circumstances laughed at "jokes" about his political opponents getting sick or dying.

You're right, he just PARTICIPATED HIMSELF in a oh-so-hilarious "joke" about not finding WMD's. Yeah, Bush was a real model of restraint and morality when it comes to sick "humor" as compared to Obama.

Brendan, I generally find your blog interesting and astute, but this post is absurdly idiotic. Click on my link for a thorough explanation.

If you watch the video, you see that Obama didn't laugh at her joke about Limbaugh's kidneys.

Excellent summary bullfighter. I'm a little shocked that anyone can have such a poor understanding of satire. I'd love to hear Brendan's summary of anything by Colbert..

"If Bush had laughed at a tasteless joke..."

Nah, Bush just PARTICIPATED in one (the WMD thing again).

So what's today's lesson in backwards logic, kids: Participating in a tasteless joke : not worthy of criticism (at least if the participant is a Republican). Simply laughing at a tasteless joke told by someone else: worthy of criticism (at least if the laugher is a Democrat).

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