Kim Jong Il Unmasked: Michael Malice's Unauthorized Autobiography of North Korea's Supreme Leader

An event at NYC's Museum of Sex


I'm so Ronery |||

Kim Jong Il, who was the supreme leader of North Korea until his death in 2011, was a leading authority on gymnastics, cinema, literature, war, cooking, and the arts. He wrote 1,400 works when he was in college, including a senior thesis that was an achievement comparable to Columbus' discovery of America. He revolutionized the opera, personally discovered that Paleolithic man originated on the Korean Peninsula, and came up with a theory of art that was as impactful on modern culture as the Copernican Revolution. Why did the supreme leader always wear sunglasses? That's because his eyes were constantly bloodshot from staying up all night figuring out ways to help his country.

These are details from celebrity ghostwriter (and former editor of Overheard in New York) Michael Malice's new book Dear Reader: The Unauthorized Autobiography of Kim Jong Il, a strange, tragic, and humorous first-person account of the supreme leader's life. On March 18, 2014, at an event held at New York City's Museum of Sex and sponsored by the Reason Foundation, The New York Times columnist John Tierney sat down with Malice to discuss the book.

Dear Reader by Michael Malice |||

Highlights from the event included a discussion of how Malice came to write Dear Reader (1:28); why Kim Jong Il is despised by North Koreans (7:00); how North Koreans are forced to engage in regular self-criticism sessions in which they're denounced by their peers (9:00); why it was a surprise that Kim Jong Il succeeded his father, Kim Il-sung (12:00); why there's no hope that political change will come to North Korea anytime soon (20:20); Ayn Rand's influence on Malice (23:20); why Kim Jong Il hated the Mona Lisa (27:15); an example of a North Korean joke (29:15); why Malice thinks the media's coverage of Dennis Rodman's relationship with Kim Jong Un is deplorable (31:35); the story behind the 1987 bombing of Flight 858 by North Korean agents (33:20); the originis of the Korean famine (41:00); Kim Jong Il's "spot on critiques of U.S. foreign policy" (42:00); why North Korea allows its citizens to reunite with family members from South Korea (43:30); the relationship between China and North Korea (50:00); and North Korea's nuclear capabilities (51:15).

For more on Malice's time in North Korea researching the book, read his account from the August/September 2013 issue of Reason.

About 54:30.

Shot and edited by Jim Epstein.

Scroll down for downloadable versions and subscribe to Reason TV's YouTube Channel to receive automatic updates when new material goes live.

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  1. He developed an antidote for Gangnam Style on his death bed, a full year before it would be needed.

    1. I think a swift pistol whip is all that is needed.

      When my wife and I got married, this was one of about three songs that we banned the D.J. from playing.

      1. When we were interviewing DJs, one suggested we play "beautiful day" by U2 after we were pronounced. We waited for him to leave the room before we started laughing.

        1. Obviously you picked When Love Comes to Town, instead.

          1. How about "One" which some people dance to at their receptions but the song is actually about a guy masturbating in a porno theatre.

            1. The Trabants gave that away.

      2. Seriously? Wow, what an idiot. Bono has to be one of the the most pompous assholes in the world. And his music sucks.

        1. No shit.

          I have no idea what he as trying to say when he started a song by counting "One! Two! Three! Fourteen!". Doesn't he know he sounded like an idiot to the entire Spanish speaking world?

    2. He was the most interesting man in the world.

    3. The wood gasification (wood gas generator) vehicle article on Wikipedia is interesting.

  2. I'm suspicious of his golf scores.

    1. You didn't card a 38 under par 34 first time you picked up a golf club?
      Never heard of beginner's luck?

  3. The sex life of Dear Leader is possibly interesting. Asian emperors would make Mick Jagger blush.

    1. You look like an FBI sting. Not interested.

  4. Why does Reason have all these events at the Museum of Sex that have nothing to do with sex?

    1. There is only sex. Everything is sex. Do you understand that what I'm telling you is a universal truth?

    2. They do have events there related to sex. They just don't tell us about them.

    3. Now that Lou Reed is dead, I suppose a visit to a museum is the closest you'll get to having sex in New York.

      1. Andy Warhol was a virgin, BTW. He was his own piece of art.

        1. The truth is that I am a virgin too. Not being a homosexual,and having no interest in spending time in prison, I hope to die a virgin too,

    4. Probably because it's an available venue.

  5. @14:30 needs to be shouted from the hills.

    1. Damn. I was expecting applause after that.

  6. I picture the hacks at NY Times and WaPo busily whipping up similar hagiographies (only they are serious) for our own Dear Leader.

    1. Everyone in the Soviet Union knew that the news was bullshit. Here, I know and you know this, but I'm not so sure about you.

      If I were paranoid...

  7. I had a bit of an eye opening discussion with my boyfriend today. I told him that I'd much rather live in Somalia than North Korea, and he said why? He'd rather live in North Korea because at least they have government jobs and a bureaucracy. Can this relationship be saved?

    1. Nein.

    2. He chose bureaucracy over pirates?


      Get out while before it's too late and he's already bored you to death.

    3. No, get the fuck out now.

    4. Maybe you could save it ... but, why?

      It's like a quote from the Q&A session in the video: "The little engine that could ... but shouldn't."

    5. I ca only guess (hope?) that he has no idea what is going on in NoKor. Have him read "Aquariums of Pyongyang" and get back to you on that.

      1. I'm considering. We'd seen Captain Phillips and of course people always are snide about a "libertarian paradise."

        I still thought that no government was a better deal than complete and utter government, but it shocked me that some people don't. Not that I'd be going to either anytime soon, but I was pretty stunned.

        1. I know people who have been to both places - actually one of these people himself has seen both. If there ever was a Hell on earth it is NorKor.

          Physical brutality arbitrarily meted out by government functionaries. Entire extended families routinely sent to work/death camps for political transgressions of one member. Death by stoning. Anybody who says NorKor is "not so bad" lacks the slightest idea what he/she is talking about.

          By comparison Nazi Germany was slightly inconvenient for most of its citizens.

  8. Your hair style bares a strong similarity...

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  10. LAS VEGAS ? Many of the Republican Party's most powerful insiders and financiers have begun a behind-the-scenes campaign to draft former Florida governor Jeb Bush into the 2016 presidential race, courting him and his intimates and starting talks on fundraising strategy.

    Concerned that the George Washington Bridge traffic scandal has damaged New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's political standing and alarmed by the steady rise of Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.), prominent donors, conservative leaders and longtime operatives say they consider Bush the GOP's brightest hope to win back the White House.

    They're not fucking around this time.

  11. Avowedly liberal instructor at Santa Barbara Community College takes UC Santa Barbara Vice Chancellor Michael Young to task. Young gave a limp response to the incident where the porn professor attacked prolife demonstrators who were in the free speech zone.

    "The vice chancellor's letter rightly affirms that: "Freedom and rights are not situational ? we cannot pick and choose what views are allowed to be aired." But that message is muddied if not contradicted by Vice Chancellor Young's assertion that the campus is under siege by "outside groups" that seek to "create discord" and "peddle hate and intolerance." In essence, he asserts that outside agitators are trying to stir up trouble. Sound familiar? This argument has been used countless times to discredit liberal groups exercising free speech. In fact it was used in the mid-1960s by UC officials and by Governor Reagan to delegitimize the Free Speech Movement on the Berkeley campus....

    "He says that if students feel they are being exposed to hate speech, a term whose ambiguity, as the ACLU has cautioned, creates a slippery slope for abridging free speech, they should call the UCSB Police. Pointedly, he does not also recommend that they should call the police if they observe the free speech rights of activists being violated, as occurred on March 4."

  12. Chris Christie ruins a perfectly good pander with a gaffe:

    "While the story was intended to forge common cause with Adelson and the several hundred donors to the Republican Jewish Coalition to which Christie was speaking, his use of the term "occupied territories" set off murmurs in the crowd. The term refers to lands in which Palestinians live where Israel maintains a military presence, including the West Bank."

    1. Next up - he speaks at an NAACP convention and calls the audience "you people." Then it's on to the Sons of Italy, where he says how much he's always loved pasta and the "spicy meat-a balls."

    2. What an idiot to say that to THAT crowd.

      Its "THE LAND GAWD GAVE TO THE JEWS" and nothing else.

    3. I really hope that fat fuck chokes on one of his fuckin chins.

      And Americans that get offended (on either side)by shit people say about israel/palestine need to take a permanent vacation in christie's unreachable by his own arms, festering bung hole. Fuck, if it were up to me, I'd load up a giant potato gun with a few palestinians and paint the wailing wall red with their guts. What the fuck is a wailing wall, anyways? It's fucking stupid, that's what it is. Tear that shit down already. Build something useful, like a gas station, or an outlet mall. I'm an american and we don't wail at walls, unless its the vietnam wall which is okay because it's built on the corpses of a million dead commies. Amen.

  13. Dude that sounds liek some pretty serious business to me man.

  14. Can this relationship be saved?


  15. The "Real Media" have sunk their teeth into this Bridgeghazi story like a pack of wild gila monsters.

    It's a BONA FIDE scandal.

    There were mean things about some woman in that report!

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