30 November 2009

They who shall not be named...

... at least, not in this blog, because I agree with this sentiment expressed at FiveThirtyEight:
I am sick to my stomach over That Couple. And now comes news they are peddling their exclusive story to the highest media bidder. Disgusting, but hardly surprising.

No, you’re not famous; you’re infamous. You’re situated squarely at the bottom of an already too-deep and increasingly murky barrel of celebrity culture, celebrity journalism, and (un)reality TV, the depths of which are probably making even Andy Warhol cringe in his grave. I want this to be your fifteenth minute. I want your egg timer to ding now, so you can exit our national discourse as swiftly, completely and permanently as possible.

Why? Because there are literally millions of Americans who bust their asses through school and job training, who serve our country in the military in harm’s way, or merely plumb our toilets at home or change our baskets at the office—who, in short, work hard, raise their families and pay their taxes--and do all of that with zero expectation that they should win some version of the public celebrity lottery that suddenly showers them with a degree of fame and fortune that That Couple not merely aspires to, but clearly believe they deserve.
Much more at the link, including the role of the media as conspirators in the process.

via Kottke.


  1. And unfortunately, various media will likely promote these tasteless, crass individuals for the media's gain.


  2. The spokesperson for That Couple, denying that they were asking to be paid for interviews, declared (as quoted in the NYTimes):

    “We repute these false allegations.”


    Classy mit schmassy, as my father used to say.

  3. fame is it's own punishment. Those hard working americans referred to deserve not to be famous, they deserve to have a fair crack at happiness and peace that comes when you're not in the public eye constantly. The underlying message of this story is jealousy, jealousy that we are not as famous as this couple, whoever they are, and the mistaken belief, perhaps this is an american thing, that fame is somehow the pinical of human achievement. That success and fame go hand in hand so that the first without the second is almost invalid. You are angry this couple has undervedly gotten fame. If they are as loathsome as you suggest than they got what they deserve, a difficult, ego driven, self conscious, materialistic and ultimately unhappy life. It requires huge strength of character to deal with fame with out these effects. the kind of strength of character that famous people might have who are famous for tangible reasons, so that success in their fields and not fame alone was the goal. The products of reality tv have by it's very nature fame as their sole goal, and are eaten up by it. What's to be angry about? What is unfair about this? If you want this to be their 15th minute? why are you discussing them? Why are you making them more famous?

  4. I don't think the post makes them more famous - names aren't used and it isn't as if there is anyone left in America who doesn't already know about this (as you rightly refer to them) loathsome couple.

    Heaping more scorn on a couple who are so very deserving of it is a good thing. No one cares if two low-life individuals go and make asses out of themselves because they will get what they deserve. (And no one I know is jealous of them - what they want and what the average American wants are as different as night and day. But I'm sure there are some who are jealous of their, um, "success." I just don't think they are here.)

    What makes me and so many other people disgusted with this couple is that in their selfish, preening way, they made life difficult for a lot of people who didn't deserve it. I do not buy for one minute that somehow the Secret Service is solely responsible for this "goof" - something more is going on here. It is strange that so few news outlets are posting the photo of when Obama met the Salahi's back in 2005. It is just a photo and by no means proves that the President knew them at all - still it is a strange coincidence.

    That being said, how in God's name did these people get so close to the President when they were not invited? This makes my head SPIN!!!! Look, I'm no fan of Obama but I want NO ONE near him, his wife, or his children who isn't properly vetted. The danger is just unimaginable. I want these clowns to be made sorry they ever decided to pull their little stunt and cause such difficult and embarrassment to regular people who are just trying to do their job.

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