News & Criticism

A Little Humor

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Very Little, as in Rich Little, your host for this year's White House Correspondents Association dinner.

Fresh off his 1976 television show, The Rich Little Show aired by the National Broadcasting Company until later in 1976, Little has recently hit the Indian casino circuit.

In 2003 Little released what was billed as "a patriot treat for every generation" in the form of a DVD called The Presidents. The 122 minute disc features Little doing nine presidents and various other Washington staples, like Walter Cronkite and David Brinkley. Throughout Little promises "a deep respect for the Oval Office while dramatically reflecting our country, our culture and ourselves."

Think this approach was attractive to the Beltway crowd who last year got hit right between the eyes by Stephen Colbert? E&P reports:

"My approach is to try to make it a comfortable venue that is enjoyable, funny and interesting," said Steve Scully, president of the White House Correspondents Association, who chose Little. "But you don't want to offend anyone." He cited the slogan for the Washington Gridiron Dinner, which says, "singe, don't burn."

Another scribey, Ron Hutcheson of McClatchy Newspapers, advises that, "We don't need to have a blogfest and a partisan slugfest after the dinner. We don't need that."

Ah, yes—actual news and national interest. No need of that. No need of the most serious and direct criticism of Beltway newsgathering in, oh, forever. And newspapers wonder why more and more people are deciding they do not need newspapers.

Have fun folks. Bringing Little in after Colbert is like having Pat Boone follow the MC5. Too little, too late—and too telling.