They rocked the headlines in 2009, and were in our faces via the teevee every bloody time we turned around. Here’s to the ten I’d like to see less of this year:
4. Brangelina — Man stealing is so first ten years of the century. This decade, let’s fawn over couples who didn’t get started sneaking around and shtupping on the movie set when one of them was married (and who don’t go around the world collecting children, shall we?) Actually, after “Benjamin Button” and “Inglourious Basterds,” Brad can stick around in 2010. Just make like your White House visits, dude, and come alone … (For more on the “cheaters of the decade that was, click here.)
3. The teabaggers — Very clever way to make you campaign live on, Ron Paul. But unless these folks learn to spell, or at least make signs without witch doctors and other racist crap on them, or until they manage to become something other than the latest iteration of the angry, election-disappointed Republican base, I’m thinking the rest of us should move along to something more interesting.
2. The Cheneys – (or as Chris Matthews insists, the “Cheeneys…” They’d make a great troll clan nemesis for Shrek and his family in one of the sequels, but other than that, this dour, glowering bunch of Dickensian complainers get way too much airtime (and that means you, Sunday shows and Politico…)
1. Sarah Palin — Was she the most overexposed celebrity of 2009? You betcha! Now the media needs to stop enabling her and her followers. We know that the Washington press corps is just licking its collective chops at the idea of this intellectually and linguistically challenged gal running for president (think “The Beverly Hillbillies” meets “The Candidate” … but you guys have got to know that her followers think you’re laughing WITH them…
And now, just to keep the chi balanced, here are 5 people I’d like to see more of in 2010:
1. The troops – Now that the jingoistic Age of Dubya is over, the media seems tempted to pull back from full-bore coverage of America’s wars. But we’re still in the two that George Bush started, and our people are still dying over there. More stories about their sacrifice, their challenges, and their contributions would be welcome, along with better coverage of what’s happening to these guys (and women) when they come home. The Iraq war is scheduled to come to a close this year, so hopefully the media will also clue us in on just what we got (if anything) for all that blood and treasure…
2. Michelle Obama — The first lady is this administration’s greatest asset. She has managed to be non-political, and yet her presence is the single best predictor that President Obama’s politics won’t stray too far from the needs of ordinary people. In terms of her personal style, Mrs. Obama has captured the perfect middle ground between glamour and everyday chic — and she’s someone that almost any woman can relate to. She fabulous with a capitol F, and the White House should deploy her more — not for politics, but to keep spreading positive vibes in these troubled times.
3. Hillary Clinton – If President Obama does, as promised (and let’s hope he does) shift most of his focus to the economy and jobs, jobs, jobs this year, his foreign policy successes will rest largely on the shoulders of his very able secretary of state. Here’s hoping the prez hands the full portfolio to Secretary Clinton, allowing her get down to business on Mideast peace, and on getting better coordination with our security services on things like the visas issued by our embassies around the world. There’s still a lot of Dubya mess to clean up around the world, and with her reputation for toughness, and the image of the U.S. that her boss has already restored around the world, Hillary is just the person to get ‘er done.
4. Rick Sanchez – I wasn’t a big fan when he was down here in Miami (we briefly worked in the same building, though I don’t know him personally,) but he’s by far the most interesting thing going on CNN (just beating out the absolutely adorable, ace interviewer Don Lemon) and in this age of David Gregorys, Sanchez is an old-fashioned, “not trying to be friends with the powerful” journalist who’s a complete breath of cable news fresh air. He’s not afraid to take on his guests (if you missed the grilling Sanchez put on cheatin’ Senator John Ensign, here you go. Enjoy…) and he’s not afraid to put his relationships with news makers (or his ethnicity, see here and here…) on the table. CNN is a bit challenged in the charisma department, so I wouldn’t be surprised if Sanchez gets Lou Dobbs’ old time slot — if the CNN brass is thinking smart.
5. Guy Ritchie – He’s had his ups and downs as a filmmaker, but between “Snatch” and “Sherlock Holmes,” Ritchie is one of the most interesting filmmakers out there (with all due respect to Tarantino.) In fact, let’s just put in a vote for interesting, innovative directors in general in 2010. …
Honorable mention on the “see more” list:
Sonia Sotomayor. I realize that Supreme Court justices are supposed to be heard only through their rulings, but Justice Sotomayor is, in terms of her historic elevation to the court, the Thurgood Marshall of our time. A lot of people, especially young women and Hispanic women, have someone in her that they can look up to, and be inspired by. (Hell, at this point, she’s going to get the black girls too, given that Clarence Thomas is still parked in that chair … permission to roll over again, Thurgood…) So go get ‘em, girl!
And happy 2010 to all!
Your turn: who would you like to see more … or less of … in 2010?