The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

8 December 2003

Don't be stupid, be a smarty

Much has been said in blogdom about the January Vanity Fair and its Vicky Ward profile, with pictures, of Joseph C. Wilson and his wife, identified as "C.I.A. operative Valerie Plame," and not much of it has been favorable.

But Wilson and Plame aside, there's plenty to dislike in this issue of V.F., and the most dislikable bit is the opening letter from editor Graydon Carter, which closes with this startling statement:

[E]ven though British prime minister Tony Blair may have a schoolboy crush on our current president, the English themselves can't stand him. When it comes to the deceptions leading up to the invasion of Iraq, they consider Bush and Blair the Bialystock and Bloom of global politics.

Hello, Graydon? Did you even see The Producers? However questionable Max and Leo's motivations — well, Max's, anyway — what they created was a hit, a sensation, a work of staggering popularity: "This could run for years!" exults one member of the audience. And yes, they oversold it by about 25,000 percent, for which a price will undoubtedly be exacted some day, but Springtime for Baghdad, so to speak, is clearly an example of the general public being way out in front of the critics and pundits.

Not to mention the occasional editor.

Posted at 7:24 PM to Political Science Fiction