Wednesday, February 28, 2007

"Political Theater" At It's Best

Every now and then, I'm going to just shamelessly plug a writer who must, under most any circumstance, be read. These are people I like so much I've created Google alerts just to read their stuff.

Today, speak up about Dana Milbank of The Washington Post. In yesterday's Post, he delivers nothing short of a laugh-out-loud piece that slices and dices Rudy Giuliani. Read it here, now.

The premise is that Rudy used to charge $100,000 per speech but, now that he's running for prez, is giving them gratis, of course. So Milbank went to hear Rudy speak to the Hoover Institution and literally parsed out the 46-minute word by cost. Trust me, hilarity ensued.

"Had America's Mayor charged the going rate, the 46-minute, 34-second speech would have cost the conservative think tank $2,147.46 per minute, including:
* $5, 368.65 for jokes about the weather.
* $21,899.94 for his views on education.
* $9,019.32 for his thoughts on taxes.
"Instead, the Hoover folks got all this free, and more! Giuliani threw in bonus thoughts on foreign policy such as, 'We clearly won the Cold War' (that two-second snippet had a market value of $71.58), and "We've never been a perfect country, we're never going to be a perfect country, but we're a good country, so we don't like war" ($214.74 for this six-second gem)."

Biting, hard-hitting, funny. Perfect political journalism.

The Post's description of his column fits - "an observational column about political theater in the White House, Congress and elsewhere in the capital."

He's great at skewering people with their own words.

He enjoys tearing into staff which, in a place where staff holds so much sway and swagger like Washington, it's always a fun thing to watch.

And he's clearly a practishioner of the old maxim about afflicting the comfortable - regardless of party.

Anyway, check out his columns here - worth a look and a nice, long winter's night of reading.


Jason said...

Great stuff right there. The guy's a genius. No Guarino, but pretty darn good.

Adam Hurtubise said...

Dana Milbank is one of my guilty pleasures, Dave. Thanks for linking to so many stories at once. I got to re-read a bunch of recent favorites.