April 1, 2010

Deconstructing Hank Johnson and Guam

Why is the blogsphere always jumping to conclusions? Is it the LSD in the infostream? All it takes is a little research to get at the real truth. Google and La Wik are your friends, use them. Case in point today is the unfair savaging of Hank Johnson, who is sure to have the last laugh. Neo, with her finely honed research skills, actually looked beneath the commonly accepted fact that Johnson fill one drool cup an hour and discovered something quite different. neo-neocon In defense of Hank Johnson

I would like to offer a spirited defense of the unjustly-maligned Representative Johnson. First of all, although this is a little-known fact, he and Admiral Willard, the man he is questioning in the video, are old friends. They met in 1986 on the set of the film "Top Gun." Willard was a consultant and actor in the film (you can look it up), but the telegenic Johnson also played a bit role in the film as one of the other pilots.

Willard and Johnson struck up an acquaintance on the set, finding that they shared a remarkable gift for deadpan humor. They developed a number of routines that had the other "Top Gun" actors and extras in stitches, and were both known for keeping a straight face throughout the silliest exchanges, a skill that served them remarkably well during their recent encounter in Congress.

One of their old routines involved a bit about landing an airplane on the island of Guam. The joke was about how small and narrow the island was, so thin it couldn't even hold a runway, and so any landing might cause the whole island to tip over. It may not sound so funny in print. But it was Johnson and Willard's delivery that made it so special.

Posted by Vanderleun at April 1, 2010 11:10 AM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Then this demonstrates the problem with 'in-jokes'. The audience (and this is an official audience at an official hearing) are not going to understand and come to a certain conclusion. Unless the participants do something to show that they were sharing a joke.

And that conclusion is going to be the one that wins - not the 'in-joke'.

Posted by: Mikey NTH at April 1, 2010 11:27 AM

"I would like to offer a spirited defense of the unjustly-maligned Representative Johnson."

I didn't know it was possible to unjustly maligne a Democrat. I think for our purposes we stick to the Johnson is a retard angle and when pressed with the facts deny them just the way the Democrats do. Does anyone doubt that when he's not joking he's still a retard?

Posted by: I-RIGHT-I at April 1, 2010 11:58 AM

At any rate, I would like to give Hank Johnson credit for replacing Cynthia McKinney in Congress. He defeated her in the runoff Democrat primary in 2006.

Posted by: Punditarian at April 1, 2010 12:15 PM

OK - but Johnson's spokeman released the following explanation:

“I wasn’t suggesting that the island of Guam would literally tip over,” Johnson says via a spokesman. “I was using a metaphor to say that with the addition of 8,000 Marines and their dependents — an additional 80,000 people during peak construction to the port on the tiny island with a population of 180,000 — could be a tipping point which would adversely affect the island’s fragile ecosystem and overburden its already overstressed infrastructure.

“Having traveled to Guam last year, I saw firsthand how this beautiful — but vulnerable island — is already overburdened, and I was simply voicing my concerns that the addition of that many people could tip the delicate balance and do harm to Guam.”

So, I'm not buying Neo-Neocon's spirited defense.

Posted by: Sirius at April 1, 2010 12:18 PM

"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood"

Especially on April first.

Posted by: neo-neocon at April 1, 2010 12:56 PM

I thought it was a funny line.
Marxist even.

Posted by: David McKinnis at April 1, 2010 1:35 PM

Insert ===> Sound of my head banging on the table.

Posted by: vanderleun at April 1, 2010 1:36 PM

So, she got you too? She's a clever one.

Posted by: Jimmy J. at April 1, 2010 2:34 PM

Pranked again, you little cutie you.

Talk about subtle in-jokes...

Posted by: Rob De Witt at April 1, 2010 3:28 PM

Assuming the defense is true, then the question about the Congressman's senility is less in question.

However, what is in question is his professionalism.

Posted by: Blarg the Destroyer at April 1, 2010 7:05 PM

If Bob & Ray never did that bit, they should have.

Posted by: sog at April 2, 2010 8:29 AM

I heard the clip ad nauseum on the radio yesterday. Deadpan joke or not, the man sounded like a fucking moron.


Posted by: jwm at April 2, 2010 5:58 PM

I think sog wins the thread.

Posted by: rickl at April 2, 2010 7:05 PM