Huffpost Media
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Ted Johnson, Maegan Carberry, Teresa Valdez Klein Headshot

Infotainment Rules: Should Letterman, DeLay and Ferrell Dominate Discourse?

Posted: Updated:

Today, we talk the politics of culture (or is it cultural politics?), starting off with our president. How much should Obama be seen and heard as he runs the country? After Bush kept to himself most of the time, we've got a president who hits all these talk shows on one Sunday morning, and then hits late night with David Letterman (same questions, same answers, same blah). Maegan makes a smart observation - Obama is being very generic in his outreach, and that's why it's not making much of an impact. If he was reaching out online, or at least appearing on Fox News, wouldn't that have been more notable?

It is interesting to watch Letterman these days, who is becoming subtly more political. Could Letterman be reaching for some of Jon Stewart's magic? After all, when was the last time Dave won an Emmy? That also brings up the new video from Will Farrell, FunnyOrDie.com, and MoveOn.org, which steps into the health care debate by mocking how much reform could harm health care executives. Do these videos have any real impact, beyond the 1.5 million views? When was the last time Ferrell changed your mind about anything, other than the dangers of babies as landlords?

Speaking of danger, the Hammer is loose! But this time, instead of knocking heads in Congress, Tom DeLay is shaking his hips on Dancing with the Stars. The reviews are, ahem -- who the hell cares? It's shocking and amazing, and the guy's still under indictment in Texas. Wait until Sarah Palin shows up for the finale! Fingers crossed!

While DeLay wasn't in attendance, last week saw the Values Voters Summit in DC, with Carrie Prejean as the keynote speaker. She, um, well, condemned the "intolerance" of the gays and liberals that led her to lose her crown as Ms. California (no irony there) and stated that God had chosen her for this new role in politics. Of course, Teresa validly points out how Prejean was not stripped of her crown for political reasons, a fact that's been glossed over by Prejean herself. It extends the "forgetting reality" theme of the GOP, but then, we all love a little escapism. Just next time, instead of spurned beauty queen, can we stick with robots fighting each other?

Finally, we touch on the Yes Men and their wonderful fake New York Post that they handed out this week. They have a new documentary coming out in a few weeks, The Yes Men Fix The World, but do these types of stunt documentaries really change anything? Like the Ferrell video, are they only for the converted?

Listen to the show here, subscribe to the iTunes podcast, or use the Blog Talk Radio player:

Wilshire & Washington, the weekly Blog Talk Radio program that explores the intersection of politics, entertainment, and new media, features co-hosts Ted Johnson, Managing Editor of Variety; conservative blogger Teresa Valdez Klein (www.teresacentric.com), and liberal blogger Maegan Carberry (www.maegancarberry.com). The show airs every Wednesday at 7:30am PST on BlogTalkRadio.com.