Talk Talk Talk Talk Talk Myself to Death: Do Cleese and Palin Get Royalties?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Do Cleese and Palin Get Royalties?

Dana Milbank is absolutely vicious in his column today on page 3 of The Washington Post. If you're going to steal, steal from the best, so he uses Monty Python's Dead Parrot Sketch to set the tone for his coverage of Hillary's West Virginia win yesterday. And he doesn't just allude to the sketch, as you might expect from his headline, "This Is an Ex-Candidate," or the caption for the accompanying photo of Hillary getting off a plane: "Hillary Clinton, pining for the Rose Garden." No, he reprints it wholesale, sprinkling it through the column so there's no missing the nuance, no forgetting the details.

As with all good comedy, there's some poignancy, too. He describes her triumphant arrival in Charleston, West Virginia:

A steep descent brings Clinton's plane to Charleston's hilltop airport. After an appropriate wait, she steps from the plane and pretends to wave to a crowd of supporters; in fact, she is waving to 10 photographers underneath the airplane's wing. She pretends to spot an old friend in the crowd, points and gives another wave; in fact, she is waving at an aide she had been talking with on the plane minutes earlier.

On the way into town, she makes an unscheduled stop at an upscale farmers market, but about 30 Clinton supporters, several wearing AFSCME T-shirts and waving Clinton campaign signs, have somehow gotten wind of it. Clinton works the crowd, signing autographs and making small talk ("Is that your dog?"). She makes her way past rows of geraniums and marigolds.

But even among the blooms, Clinton is reminded of her troubles. She stops at Ellen's Homemade Ice Cream and orders a scoop of espresso Oreo and a scoop of butter pecan. "Ooh, that looks good," she says after taking the confection, then pauses. "Now, let's see. Who's got my money?" asks the woman who has lent her campaign $11 million to keep it afloat. She laughs. "Where -- where'd they go, the people with my money?" Finally, two aides arrive to retire Clinton's dessert debt.

As long as she doesn't prolong the agony and throw herself into even larger mud pits, she'll be able to return to her respectable position in Washington, and this will be little more than a bad dream (although, at times, a fairly funny bad dream).


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