December 9, 2013

The 10 finalists for Time's Person of the Year.

I know. I hate getting suckered into this annual nonsense, but the list presents some interesting options"
Bashar Assad, President of Syria
Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder
Ted Cruz, Texas Senator
Miley Cyrus, Singer
Pope Francis, Leader of the Catholic Church
Barack Obama, President of the United States
Hassan Rouhani, President of Iran
Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services
Edward Snowden, N.S.A. Leaker
Edith Windsor, Gay rights activist
It's not going to be Assad. If we were going to do Bad Guy persons of the year, somebody more dramatically bad would have won recently, like Osama bin Laden or Saddam Hussein. It would be pathetic to reward Assad with that kind of attention. What about Vladimir Putin? He's not even on the list of finalists, probably because he's already won, back in 2007.

Scratch Hassan Rouhani. He hassan done enough yet.

It's not going to be Barack Obama. He's already won — repeatedly — right? And he was barely there this year, never around when anything was happening. I might accept a jocular nod to The Absence of Barack Obama, because that metaphysical being has been everywhere, involved in everything.

As for Kathleen Sebelius, that's ridiculous. If they were at all thinking of giving it to her, they should have switched to one of those nameless, faceless type of "persons" like The Endangered Earth (1988) or You (2006) or The Whistleblowers (2002) and give it to The Uninsured, The Young Invincibles, The Coders, or The Bugs or something.

It's not going to be Jeff Bezos, because he already won, even if that's hard to remember because it was so last century. 1999.

An entertainer has never won, so there's zero chance that the first one will be Miley Cyrus. Popes have won, but I think it's a bit early to go with another Pope yet, unless the Time folk are itching to play Obama's recently attempted income inequality theme. I think that would be shabby, so I say no.

That leaves Edith Windsor, Ted Cruz, and Edward Snowden. I think Edith Windsor is most likely, because: 1. She gives Time a chance to pick an individual woman, something they've done — embarrassing! — only once before. (It was Corazon C. Aquino, in 1986.) 2. She's a good figurehead for same-sex marriage and gay rights, which were very big this year. 3. It lets Time vary the usual focus on politics, economics, and foreign affairs.

There's Ted. Dear sweet, crazy, everyone-hates-him Ted. If Time is smelling blood and wants to punch around a conservative, the man to pick on is definitely Ted Cruz.

Edward Snowden is an interesting choice, but I don't think it helps Obama to create an occasion for everyone to focus on the NSA problem. Yeah, it's a distraction from healthcare.gov, but does Obama want help in that form? This is a 4th reason to go with Edith Windsor: Gay marriage is a subject that casts a flattering light on Obama.

So we have a winner, don't you think? Edith Windsor.

62 comments:

gerry said...

He hassan done enough yet.

Heh.

BUT - he's fleeced Obama diplomatically, although, come to think of it, that really isn't much of an accomplishment.

BarrySanders20 said...

I think it will be Snowden. An ambiguous good guy/ bad guy who came from obscurity to have a significant impact on the security state.

MadisonMan said...

Edith Windsor? Who?

I had to look her up. I was wondering if she was related to the House of Windsor.

Would her picture on the cover generate sales? I doubt it. That's a strike against her.

jr565 said...

Who's Edith Windsor?

jr565 said...

Oh yeah, Edith Windsor.. No way is she person of the year. C'mon.

The Godfather said...

I say the Pope. In fact, I nominate him for the Nobel Peace Prize, too. And Senator from New Jersey.

jimbino said...

Edward Snowden, for sure. He's the guy I'd like to have a beer with.

Furthermore, he's the kind of guy Germany needed back in the 30's, the one they never got, the one who could have exposed fascist oppression.

The greatest threat to my freedoms as an Amerikan is that posed by my own gummint, not N. Korea, Syria, China or Iran.

I want a Snowden there when the gummint starts following me around the world and forcing me to buy Obamafood, Obamabooze and Obamasex--all in the form of insurance.

TJIC said...

> Edith Windsor

I love how the left, which once stood for laborers, is now celebrating an old, retired white woman who inherited money and didn't want to pay taxes on it.

Now, personally, I've got nothing against the old, the retired, whites, women, or those who inherit money.

...but the lefties have sure come a long way, baEdith Windsor.by.

Bob R said...

What's Time magazine, grandma? Is it something they had back in the olden days?

n.n said...

Why not Obama? He won the Nobel Peace Prize on a flimsier premise. He should win again for the lie heard 'round the world.

iowan2 said...

The list makes it easy. Only Snowden has had a major impact


lemondog said...

Snowden.

He has made the world aware of the depth and breadth of US surveillance.

Quayle said...

I vote Miley Cyrus, Singer.

It would be such a perfect and fitting statement for our modern and progressive times.

If foam had been invented in ancient Rome, I have no doubt that while while the city burned Nero would have instead been wagging a giant finger.

Hagar said...

I suppose it is futile to remind everyone again that it is not about "winning," but about who has influenced "the news" most in the past year.

They may decide that this year it is not a person, but "Obamacare."

paul a'barge said...

Edith Windsor? Who? Never heard of her. Is "she" a "she"? I'm so confused.

Ann Althouse said...

"I suppose it is futile to remind everyone again that it is not about "winning," but about who has influenced "the news" most in the past year."

What do you mean by "it"? That's the official Time bullshit, but it's not what happens. I'm trying to predict what Time will do. If the official doctrine was followed, it would boringly be the U.S. President over and over again.

sonicfrog said...

Either the Pope or Snowden.

The Drill SGT said...

but I don't think it helps Obama to create an occasion for everyone to focus on the NSA problem. Yeah, it's a distraction from healthcare.gov, but does Obama want help in that form? This is a 4th reason to go with Edith Windsor: Gay marriage is a subject that casts a flattering light on Obama.

So does Valerie have to order Time, or do they just do it that way on their own?

Tank said...

Who would generate the most sales?

Time is a business,I think.

Achilles said...

Ann is right. This Windsor person I haven't ever heard of "affects" the news most in the way that a house organ for Obama wants it affected. Apparently she is gay, female, and inherited wealth.

That pretty much defines every democrat pol and most republican pols in one way or another, mostly the inherited wealth and white part. I know this is gratuitous and unfair. Some of those pols leveraged their positions to attain wealth through graft and influence pedaling.

FleetUSA said...

"ObamaCare"

FleetUSA said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Left Bank of the Charles said...

If you picked based on Google results, Pope Francis with 296,000,000 just edges out Miley Cyrus who has 254,000,000.

Edith Windsor's 3,480,000 results come in last, so Althouse is playing the long odds for the dark house.

I think that the hope of a liberal Pope bringing change to the Catholic Church will win out even the most secularly liberal editors at Time.

In that regard, the fix may be in. Nancy Gibbs, the managing editor at Time, coauthored the book, "The Preacher and the Presidents: Billy Graham in the White House".

campy said...

Obama, or Time is Raaaaacist!!!!!

dbp said...

I think TIME will pick the new Pope. He has been saying some left-ish things and they would love to publicize that.

campy said...

Obama, or Time is Raaaaacist!!!!!

Richard Dolan said...

It's interesting that the underlying assumption is that Time still wants to puff up O-man. If it is, in substance, essentially Mark Halperin's call, that may not be his objective. The guy was formerly part of the O-man cheering squad in the press, but for a while now, he has definitely tempered that approach.

But assuming Time is still part of O-man's media cheerleaders, I suppose it has to be either Windsor or the Pope. But either pick would have a downside for O-man. Picking Windsor may remind everyone that O was againt it before he was for it, and underscore the idea that you can't believe what he says (because he was never really against it, just pretending for political reasons).

The Pope shares O-man's view that capitalism is a very mixed blessing. But picking him may remind everyone that O-man is pretty pathetic as a leader, since (whatever you think about the Pope) he isn't shy about leading, and is forthright and candid in a way O-man is definitely not.

That there is no one they could pick that wouldn't, by comparison, diminish O-man, is a telling comment on how far the One has fallen.

mccullough said...

It should be Peyton Manning.

Probably greatest QB in NFL history having his greatest season at age 37 after building up the Colts franchise and sustaining a major injury that caused him to miss a season and end up with a different team.

QB is the most important position in the NFL and the NFL is the most popular sport in the US. NFL injuries are a huge topic in the news and here is a guy with nothing to prove continuing to play after a major injury.

I

AReasonableMan said...

The Pope wins this easily. He has completely changed the tone of the world's largest religion, which was headed in a very bad direction.

Mini Mongo said...

Count me among the 'Edith Who?' crowd. If she's selected it would sell a lot of magazines. Back when I was a lad it was my understanding that L Ron Hubbard would release a new book and each Scientologist was expected to buy at least five copies so it would debut at the top of the sales chart. Similar behavior is expected of members of they gay community today. Time could easily break the million mark in sales for that particular issue.

Hagar said...

In the good old days when Time Magazine was Time Magazine, that was what Henry Luce and Fuerbringer went by.
(And the "Imperial Presidency" had not yet become so glorious then. The President actually had to do something to get in the "news." In any case, they said "influenced," not just mentioned.)

Hagar said...

And I don't remember Luce and Fuerbringer taking polls. I was "the editors' choice," pretty much meaning the two of them and mainly Luce his very own self.

Scott said...

It's going to be Obama again.

Rose said...

Snowden. He's the Apple commercial come to life, running down the aisle and tossing the sledgehammer into Big Brother's Big Screen. And risking his life to do it.

Anthony said...

I'm with sonicfrog - either the Pope or Snowden. The Pope has done more than just tuck in a boilerplate statement about inequality into a 200-page letter; he's actually setting an example of how people should lead a charitable Christian life.

Revenant said...

Snowden would be an interesting choice, so it won't be him.

I'm betting they go with the Pope.

William said...

Miley would sell the most mags, but her choice would parody the whole concept of Man of the Year. I agree with sonicfrog: Snowden or the Pope. They're both news makers who can sell mags. That man of the year award would really cap the Pope's career.

FleetUSA said...

"ObamaCare" should get "Person of the Year" as in '88 it was the "endagered earth", in '82 it was the "computer"

madAsHell said...

Smiley Virus!
Time is going to capture the TeenBeat demographic!!

Salamandyr said...

Windsor feels like an affirmative action pick. Not that she is not important, but she is not personally prominent. Picking her would allow for another round of self congratulatory backslapping, so I can't completely discount it.

But it seems Snowden is the clear choice. No other individual this past year has had such a great affect on world affairs, for good or ill, than him.

St. George said...

The question is which of those 10 will sell the most newsstand copies and to buyers who are most likely to convert to subscribers.

You notice that Time now does at least one one-shot issue of LIFE every month on subjects like JFK, etc. They know what sells where.

Answer: The Pope.

He's new. He's hot. He's spiritual.

Plus, it does not hurt that he is liberal.

I will also bet that right now Pres. Obama is box office poison. His children would sell magazines. His children and a puppy would really sell magazines. A baby, too. Maybe just a puppy and a baby.

And, of course, all bets are off if John Lennon gets killed between now and year end.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Pope Francis FTW, I say. Though Snowden is definitely possible.

rehajm said...

Next year the person of the year is the sucker that steps up to be Time's sugar daddy.

chrisnavin.com said...

I vote Lorenzo Lamas.

Renegade went unrecognized, but it changed so much.

Meade said...

Even with her new bob haircut, Miley will come in only second.

TIME Person of the Year will be the President of the United States.

richlb said...

Snowden. Although I'd love to see it be Sebelius just as she's about to get bussed by Obama.

El Pollo Raylan said...

The Pope will be Time's POTY.

SOJO said...

I'd like a bake off between Pope Francis and Miley (for pure troll value) with Snowden bringing up the rear, please.

Hagar said...

WaPo sold Newsweek to Sidney Harman (or Jane?) for a dollar, and I believe the consensus is that he (she) overpaid.

What is the current price for Time?

Pat said...

I think it goes to the Pope and not because he's said some "leftist" things. In a very short term, he has sparked new life into a very large religion. I am a crotchety grumpy conservative, and I love everything about the guy.

Tim said...

Gay marriage is a subject that casts a flattering light on Obama.
Why? Have you heard anything about Reggie setting up a registry?

PB Reader said...

Time should just retire the award.

traditionalguy said...

Snowden. He has something on them.

Luke Lea said...

Except Snowden obviously IS the person of the year. That lesbian is just a symbol isn't she? And what say should Obama have? None.

Luke Lea said...

Maybe they should make it the non-person of the year for a change. Snowden could win that.

Patrick said...

I think it's cute that Time still does this.

Patrick said...

I think it's cute that Time still does this.

Sayyid said...

"It's not going to be Barack Obama. He's already won — repeatedly — right? And he was barely there this year, never around when anything was happening. I might accept a jocular nod to The Absence of Barack Obama, because that metaphysical being has been everywhere, involved in everything."

The empty chair!

Freeman Hunt said...

The Pope. He's been in the news almost constantly, and he's broadly appealing right now which translates to more magazine sales. Plus, there are endless human interest anecdotes about him. Nice, short, heart-warming, easily digestible story bits that are perfect for Time.

No way it's Windsor because people have never heard of her. They want to sell magazines to low information readers who think they are high information readers, so they can't go making them feel dumb for not knowing the winner.

I don't think they'll pick Snowden because that would make Obama look bad. Also, their readers are probably over Snowden.

Strelnikov said...

Do they just automatically put Obama on that list each year? How long after his term will they continue to do so?

Chuck said...

Why Edith Windsor, who was a figurehead poster-child plaintiff, and not Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy, whose one vote has been driving the legal normalization of homosexuality since Lawrence v. Texas?

I think that choosing Windsor but not Kennedy takes the heat off Kennedy, and off the fact that American society is being changed by a bare 5-4 majority on the Court.

Choosing Windsor gives TIME the chance to trumpet the plaintiff-appellee's personal story. And that is how the gay rights movement has been working its case in the court of public opinion for many years now; we are supposed to get to know friends, colleagues, neighbors, family, etc., who are gay and by knowing them we are supposed to shape policy.

A choice of Kennedy draws too much attention to the dubious legal reasoning by which the Windsor majority is legislating a national policy on gay rights.

Crazy Jane said...

Forbes just released its list of the world's most powerful people in 2013

No.1. Vladimir Putin

No. 2. Barack Obama