December 26, 2005

Never Listen to a TV Pundit.

I think that's the secret title to this article called "You, Too, Can Be a TV Pundit!"
The toughest part of the job is developing the ability to reduce everything in the news to the party's latest talking points. Make sure to get yourself on your party's e-mail lists or otherwise learn the correct line. The booker will test your skills at assembling a one-sentence, easily digested sound-bite in the pre-interview. Treat the pre-interview as an audition for a part in a continuing TV drama, because it is. "Clinton was worse on this than Bush" or its opposite is a perfectly acceptable answer to almost any question. Don't try expressing an original thought on TV or otherwise upstaging the host, or he'll never invite you back. Remember, it's his show and you're just the replaceable talent.

And no matter what you do, don't answer pre-interview questions with the preface, "It's very complicated."
Did Jack Shafer not get a callback?

5 comments:

David said...

Of extreme importance is the ability of the pundit to overlay opposing arguments with a stream-of-rhetoric encompassing his party's entire political agenda without missing a beat.

It also helps to have the ability to refer to the other pundit as "My friend and colleague" or "I respect his/her opinion but he/she is totally wrong on this one" and then inject all the talking points near and dear to the attacking pundit's heart.

Jacques Cuze said...

Did Jack Shafer not get a callback?

Did you?

Simon Kenton said...

Jesus Christ, Mrs. quxxo! It's Christmas. Give it a rest. Can you ever say anything pleasant? Do you think anyone WANTS to submerge in your bile, day after day?

XWL said...

Mr. Shafer has a point, but he buries it in his attempt to express anger and wit (I guess that article was supposed to express wit, but it's really hard to ken).

The 'duelling split screen' of throbbing temple blood vessels obfuscates rather than illuminates, but it must entertain some or else shows that avoid the technique would prosper and these would faulter.

(and to unload some snark, Maybe Mr. Shafer has a face made for the internet?)

(not as if he hasn't been reliably liberal in every opinion he's ever voiced so he could fill in for Mr. Begala at a drop of the hat)

brylin said...

Maybe this is why Jack Shafer didn't get a callback.