5thstate on Fighting the Good Fight

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I am nominating 5thstate, a regular reader and commenter at TheZoo, for having the most pithy and well written comment I have seen in quite a long time.

Yesterday, we reported that Chuck Todd, an uber Washington elitist, and total Villager, had the audacity to ask what specific sacrifices Obama was going to ask of the American people.  As if many Americans’ now living in tent cities across the nation isn’t enough, as if insurance isn’t pricing people out of things like eating wasn’t enough.

5thstate thought that I should have included Ed Henry in my original post on Chuck Todd because Mr. Henry decided to write a little self-serving piece at his CNN home.  Here is what 5thstate had to say.

Ed Henry, (who looks like the lead contralto of a Glee Club) was the one who asked Obama why it had taken him two days to comment on the AIG bonuses (of about 10 days ago?) to which Obama replied “Because I like to know what I’m talking about before I say anything”.

Despite being bitchslapped by one of the most popular presidents in US history, Ed seems to think he just earned a campaign medal and he’s just written a breathless movie treatment of his ‘story’ for the CNN website:

HENRY [article]: “I was heading into this event with the same strategy: make news on something unexpected (I won’t tell you which topics I was working on cause it would ruin the surprise for a future presser or interview with the president).”

(Great preamble, Ed! So your mission, your duty as a reporter, was to, make news?  And your strategy is to compile what you think are relevant questions about week-old news? The old “element of surprise” gambit, eh? )


The Corps was nervous, cigarettes were shared as a silent bond, each man knowing it might be his last.

We had our orders, but as wet behind the ears Lieutenant I was eager to make my mark if HQ’s strategy didn’t pan out.

I had some plans of my own, but I kept them under my hat…er… helmet hoping to God and Betty Grable I wouldn’t have to use them.

A dog barked in the foggy distance. The low nervous chatter was silenced, the only noises now were the sounds of final weapons checks and last minute twitters and e-mails being pounded out on Blackberries. And then I just waited, for the signal I though would never come…—

HENRY [article]: “The pressure was on now because the president had called on me. Someone handed me a microphone, millions were watching, and it’s scary to think about changing topic in a split second because you might get flustered and screw up.”

(OMG! OMG! I can’t believe it! He’s right there! OMG!)


“I saw Sgt. Chuck Todd tossed like a rag doll by a Panzerfaust, his leg blown off, but he was still alive, calling out for his booking agent. He talked a lot about sacrifice, and now he’d made a sacrifice of his own. But he was a fighter, and somehow I knew his contract wasn’t up yet.
But it was up to me to lead the Corps now.

Someone handed me a Garand, it was still warm from whoever gave it up—if I survived I’d have to take that soldiers’ press pass from around his neck and deliver it to his parents who probably still lived inside the Beltway.

The awesome responsibility that had suddenly fallen on me was terrifying for a split second and I hoped my cameramen had zoomed-in enough to capture the emotions playing across my youthful face as I grappled with moment.

And then I sprang my secret plan!

HENRY [article]: “So I waited patiently and then decided to pounce with a sharp follow-up. From just a few feet away, I could see in his body language that the normally calm and cool president was perturbed.

But it’s in moments like that, we sometimes find out what’s really on a president’s mind. In this case, he’s not happy about the scrutiny on AIG. So he did slap me down a bit. “


“I’d seen the Obergruppenfuhrer stagger from my shot, and with him out of action the resistance seemed to collapse.

But I had to make sure and I ran forward with just one round left. Just as I reached him I saw his body language suggest that he was pulling out his 9mm Walther.

Instinctively I fired straight ahead! But it’s in moments like that you discover that when a rifle is pointed downwards, shooting straight ahead means shooting yourself in the foot.

With a steady gaze the Obergruppenfhrer fired, right between my eyes.

The bullet passed right though my skull, but missed all my major organs!

Before I could reload the Obergruppenfuhrer was gone and the fight was over.

Doc “Wolf “ Blitzer stuffed a rag into the empty space in my head and declared me fit to write this thrilling combat report, all about me.

Sure the liberal press called the engagement boring, but they weren’t there, they just watched live on their TeeVees.

But I’ll never forget that day, and the sacrifices Chuck Todd talked about, and I don’t intend to let anyone else forget that day either!

After all it was the reason I joined the Washington Press Corps in the first place—to make news!

After all isn’t that what all of us in the 1600th Pennsylvania Avenue ‘Fighting TV Journalists’ are fighting for–the freedom to take the freedom we take for granted , for granted? And a better contract?

Brilliant. Simply brilliant!

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19 thoughts on “5thstate on Fighting the Good Fight

  1. 5th, this was awesome! I loved it and I hope you don’t mind my putting it on the front page.

    We have the most wonderful commenters on this blog. While I may have highlighted 5th’s outstandingly funny comment, I don’t want any of our regulars to think your comments are any less fantastic.

    I love all of you and I read everything you all write every day.

    Gosh, how I love this place…and all of YOU!

  2. Aww, Jeez! While reading 5th’s submission I was playing the whole thing in my head, in gritty black-and-white, picturing the heroic Ed Henry, unshaven, dirty, old before his time, with that battle-weary thousand yard stare in his once young, but still startlingly blue eyes, gearing up for one more dangerous, possibly suicidal charge into the maw of death. I got shivers down my spine just imagining the courage that it took for our fearless, yet still humble soldier to ask such a STUPID DAMN QUESTION! No medal for you, Sad Sack.

  3. With a steady gaze the Obergruppenfhrer fired, right between my eyes.

    The bullet passed right though my skull, but missed all my major organs!

    Best part… very creative by 5th Estate. Thanks for posting this.

  4. Of course I don’t mind, MsJo!
    It was jolly kind of you to put this up, I’m very chuffed by this honor.
    Thanks also to Wonkette, actually, for bringing this unctuous little twit to my attention in the first place.

    A Wonketteer archly observed that anyone with a first-name as a last name can’t be trusted.
    Here we have the double whammy of Chuck Todd and Ed Henry proving the point; they are both ‘tools’ of their trade.

    Though each can be easily lampooned, their combined performance is no joke.
    Both may be new to the White House Press Corps, but Chuck Todd has a record of insidious incompetence as NBC’s Political Director—he usually sounds well informed but what he does with his information is another matter. He got the job via Tim Russert.

    Ed Henry has won several “prestigious” awards for his political journalism—as far as I can tell, all from his fellow political journalist associations who as we all know have been doing such a bang-up job since the year 2000.
    The two of them are still young, and clearly not very bright. In ten years time no doubt THEY will have their own Sunday political shows (with them as executive producers, suits by Botany 500). The force of coattail celebrity derived from political ‘reporting’ is strong with these two. They will go far.


  5. mikerush…”with that battle-weary thousand yard stare in his once young, but still startlingly blue eyes” lovely!

    Cats…I had so many options as to what Ed Henry’s skull actually contained (reptilian brain? guts? pancreas? tofu? shit?), so I just went for major organs and hoped the irony was evident.

    I was going to write “miraculously missed my major organs” but then it wouldn’t actually have been miraculous would it?

    paul….a little ‘giveback’ for all the glee you’ve given us here.

  6. 5th, I loved it. The gritty noir and modern silly, sweetly done. Only question I had was the headshot. When one punctures a container with vacuum inside it tends to implode.

    Considering his performance…I guess you had it right.

  7. med…”Only question I had was the headshot….”

    I appreciate your attention to the physics of the situation—it was a major concern of mine which is why after some thought I avoided describing it ( much as I dearly wanted to). After all, no harm was done to Mr Henry, and describing a vacuum with the appropriate degree of drama was beyond my humble skills. 😀

  8. Blimey, Ms Jo, the Daily Kos! Who on earth requested that?! I’m off to have a look forthwith and see what’s occurring ( if anything)..

    • I cross post occasionally at DKos. I put the link to this in their Ed Henry piece and the people who read it loved it and asked that I cross post it there.

      I put a link up at Washington Monthly (one of my usual haunts) and they loved it, too. As did the peeps at Crooks and Liars (another of the hot spots I traverse). Oh, and ditto AmericaBlog.

      Dude, you are a hit!

  9. Ms Jo….I,m blushing.

    Americablog and C&L are long time faves of mine, but I can’t quite remember my old logins ( ‘Britisher’ I think is/was my moniker at both).

    would you be so kind as to express at the Kos at least, on my behalf, a general thanks to all who have been so generous in their comments/ratings there?

    • I will do that. I added your name to the post in an update, as someone asked if I wrote it, and I did not want to claim credit in any way for your brilliant writing!! Go check it out.

  10. 5th, what you wrote was perfect. Nice journalistic touch. I just had this vision (no doubt influenced by the Chuck Jones tribute the other night) of his head deflating like a whoopee cushion and old Doc slapping a bandaid on the wound, sticking a bicycle pump in his ear, phweet, phweet, phweet, I’m ready to go back in, Sarge.

    Of course there was an extra pump or two, knowing what an over-inflated self image these bozos have.

    Your ending fit the piece.

  11. Zooey, thank MsJo for picking it out and putting it up on its own.

    And check this out, from where MsJ provided the link at Washington Monthly:

    “Thank you, MsJoanne – Hilarious. Yes, and two Purple Hearts awarded – One for that P-38 shot and the other for his toe tapping Garand – Geez, one more PH and he can be airlifted back to Atlanta.

    Also, thanks, for introducing that site – Notice at the top, she has linked to Mark Fiore’s political cartoon from sfgate about toxic leverage and the green frogs. Sort of a twofer with 5th winning hands down. Posted by: berttheclock

    Well the recognition of Fiore is well deserved. Hopefully berttheclock will stop by again and join in.

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