Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Mr. Bad Example

Stu Kreisman is an Emmy award winning writer-producer. It says so right in the byline of his blog at the Huffington Post. Impressive credits too: SCTV, Saturday Night Live, Night Court, Cheers, Newhart. He's also written for Homeboys in Outer Space.

His work at the HuffPo reveals the man's dynamic range as well. He puts aside the comedy entirely and adopts the very convincing persona of an indignant, uncompromising, seething, retribution seeking zealot in this post about the unforgivable sins of David Feherty. Excerpts:
David Feherty insulted every person who puts on a uniform to fight for the United States. He cast them all as hate mongers willing to assassinate members of the government that Feherty and his pals don't care for. And for that he must be punished.

There is no way I can watch Feherty on a CBS golf telecast ever again without thinking of how much he disrespects the political process of his adopted country and slanders the troops. Others have been fired for less. Failure to terminate Feherty's contract will just tar everyone involved in professional golf and at CBS. This was not a slip of the tongue. It was a threat.

Well, he's certainly entitled to his opinion. And I see it is not an entirely subjective one. For Stu Kreisman doesn't just go around making judgments on other people's actions based on abstract concepts of proper behavior. No, Stu Kreisman bases his judgments on the examples of civilized behavior, morality and rhetorical restraint of others. In particular, this paragon of virtue:
[Feherty] has defended himself by saying that he supports the troops, made a trip to the Mideast and visits them in hospitals. Well good for him but guess what? Thousands of other people do the same thing without any publicity. I highly doubt any of them engage in a conversation that would cause a soldier to threaten a member of congress. Al Franken has been doing USO shows for years with minimal publicity, but Franken is probably not the type of patriot Feherty or his friends at the PGA cotton to. Visiting the troops does not give you a free pass to smear them.
I'm sensing Kreisman may not be a daily Fraters Libertas reader. To get him up-to-date, from yesterday's post, the words of Al Franken while on national TV self-promoting his work with the USO in Iraq:
I actually had an officer who - I obviously won't say who he was - who said to me, listen, George W. Bush is my commander in chief. I have to respect him. But if I got Rumsfeld in my sights, I would not hesitate to squeeze off a couple rounds.


Questions for Mr. Kreisman.

Stu, bubie, if you had known about his comments in 2005, would you have called for the firing of Al Franken from his Air America radio show?

Now that you know about them, how about Al Franken's assuming a position in the US Senate? Should he withdraw from the election contest? Should he concede the seat to Norm Coleman?

By the Kreisman standard, Franken has insulted every person who puts on a uniform to fight for the United States, cast them as hate mongers who would assassinate members of the government Franken and his pals don't care for. Failure to terminate him will tar every Minnesotan. Tar every member of the US Senate (and I didn't think that was possible any more). Visiting the troops does not give Franken a pass to smear them!

This is an opportunity for a bipartisan profile in courage. The stridently liberal Kreisman has set an objective standard for abhorrent behavior and now he gets a chance to demonstrate that it is not mere political gamesmanship. Be a profile in courage, start the Dump Franken movement at Huff Po now!

Failure to do so can be interpreted as his Feherty post being in the tradition of most of his work, comedy. Not quite as funny as Homeboys in Outer Space. Then again, his blog doesn't have a laugh track to tell us where the jokes are.

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