June 10, 2008


Minnesota Dems leery of Franken’s past (JOSH KRAUSHAAR, 6/10/08, Politico)

Republicans have made Franken’s past comments a central part of their media strategy. The state party has compiled a treasure trove of Franken’s most controversial material, which the party has already leaked out on a selective basis — and GOP operatives hint that there’s a lot more to come.

He’s been facing criticism over the 2000 column he wrote for Playboy, titled “Porn-O-Rama,” describing a visit to an imaginary sex institute where he takes part in sexual acts with humans and machines — replete with graphic sexual descriptions.

The state Republican Party also called attention to a 1995 New York magazine article quoting Franken as joking about a potential “Saturday Night Live” sketch in which Andy Rooney discusses raping CBS news correspondent Lesley Stahl. The skit never aired.

“The thing I don’t understand about Al Franken is how he thought those jokes were funny,” said Steven Schier, a political science professor at Minnesota’s Carleton College. “The biggest failing of any comedian is failing to be funny.”

If he were funny he'd be conservative.
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Posted by Orrin Judd at June 10, 2008 6:44 PM

So the rest of SNL were right wing republicans?

Posted by: Oddbark at June 10, 2008 8:00 PM

Republicans? No. Conservative? Yes. Nearly all their best bits involve making fun of people and being otherwise politically-incorrect.

Posted by: oj at June 10, 2008 8:22 PM

The show as a whole has never been very funny, at least in my lifetime, but there does seem to be a Republican on their writing staff because they've run some hilarious spoofs of Pelosi and Hillary. After the Don Imus story took off they aired a skit depicting Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton as money-grubbing hustlers. Or maybe I've confused that with the evening news.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at June 10, 2008 8:30 PM

Exceptionally unfunny. His schtick always had the faint aroma of inside humour.

Eddie Murphy and Joe Piscopo doing Ebony and Ivory was pretty funny at the time.

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at June 10, 2008 10:51 PM

So how was Bass-o-matic, the Land Shark, and the Bag-of-(sharp objects) line of toys for kids in any way political?

Posted by: Oddbark at June 11, 2008 4:24 AM

PETA, Ralph Nader, etc.

Posted by: oj at June 11, 2008 6:24 AM


1) Bass-o-matic: He's putting live fish in a blender! How can you laugh at someting so cruel to our animal friends?
2) Land Shark: People are getting devoured by sharks! In their own homes! Only a sick person would think that's funny.
3) Bag-o-glass: Oh, so now you think children being peddled dangerous, life threatening objects by unscrupulous vendors is funny? You, sir, are worse than Hitler.

Try to follow along: While the content of humor may or may not be conservative the tone of all humor is conservative. Content and tone are different things. We go through this every time Orring brings it up and the Liberals never, ever get that content and tone are different. For example, when Jon Stewart unleashes one of his patented bon mots ("George Bush is a big dumb poo-poo head!" for example) the content is liberal (it's anti-Bush) but the tone is conservative (making fun of someone who is less intelligent than you).

Posted by: Bryan at June 11, 2008 8:35 AM

So you consider tone (style) more important than content (substance)?

If both cons and libs think the Landshark is funny how could it be political. If libs think its funny how is it conservative?

Posted by: Oddbark at June 11, 2008 7:55 PM

It's incredibly rare that both are funny. Tone is much easier, so most humor relies on it. That's why humor is so often offensive to someone.

Landshark is funny, if at all, because it represents an instance of incongruity:


Incongruity is conservative because it implies Order.

Liberals laugh at comedy because it's funny. Most of it they feel guilty about finding funny.

Posted by: oj at June 11, 2008 8:35 PM