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Best and Worst of Worst and Best Lists

January 1st, 2010, 04:01 am admin Leave a comment Go to comments

It’s that end-of-the-year time again and (disputed) end-of-the-decade time when we get a gander at what assorted folk think was the best and worst of what we’ve experienced in the past year or the past 10. As Devilstower pointed out, these lists are stupid. That doesn’t stop them from filling the airwaves and other media, however. In late December, Top Ten and Top Five lists of everything imaginable pop up to fill the interstices left by contributors on vacation. Some of us, despite our best intentions, read them full well knowing their high potential for lowering our IQs.

This year, there’s 10 Cocktails for 2010, the Best Book I’ve Read This Year, the best films of the decade, no, these are the best films of the decade, no, these are the best films of the decade, the Worst Movie of the Decade, the 23 Shows That Changed Television during the Decade, the best 10 viral videos of the decade. And there’s …

Ten Psychology Studies from 2009 Worth Knowing About.

Decade In Review: Corporate Scoundrels And Scandals.

Top ten dreams of the decade– did yours make the list?

Capitol Hill’s Most Unhinged Republicans.

Nine Ways Our World Changed During the ‘00s.

Image of the decade.

Top 10 Sex Tape Scandals of 2009.

Biggest political winners and losers of 2009.

OK, OK, enough already, you get the picture.

Not to be outdone, the folks over at The Atlantic gave Marc Ambinder the task of putting up a reader poll to choose the worst political gaffes of the decade.

The choices: “Mission Accomplished”; Obama jokes about Nancy Reagan and seances in first post-election presser; Mike Huckabee hosts press conference to announce he won’t run negative ad, shows negative ad; John McCain unsure of how many houses he owns; John Kerry’s 2006 “Botched Joke.”

Really? That’s it?

How about John McCain’s 2008 comment, “Our economy remains fundamentally strong.” Or George Bush’s “You’re doing a heckuva job, Brownie.” Or Larry Craig’s “wide stance”? Or John Edwards’s midnight encounter with the National Inquirer sneaking down the back stairs of his lover’s hotel room? Or what about Rod Blagojevich’s taped effort to sell Barack Obama’s Senate seat: “I’ve got this thing and it’s f**king golden,” “I’m just not giving it up for f**king nothing,” and “Give this motherf**ker Obama his senator? F**k him. For nothing. F**k him.’”? Or Condi Rice’s slip-up when she said: “As I was telling my husb—”, then quickly changed to “As I was telling President Bush.”

As gaffes go, however, surely George W. Bush’s July 2, 2003, “Bring them on” dare to Iraqi insurgents is hard to top. If that is, it’s a “gaffe” to play tough guy with thousands of other people’s lives.


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