Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Another Fatuous Mouthpiece

Upon reviewing Wizbang's review of Ariana Huffington's new blog, The Huffington Post (THP), I was compelled to take a look around, and was intrigued to see that sports commentator Jim Lampley is included in her stable of writers.

Jim's first foray into punditry on THP is a piece called "The Biggest Story of Our Lives," and it is Exhibit A to why sports announcers shouldn't stray too far from their field of play.

Here is Jim Lampley's demonstration of punditry:

Because the Vegas bookmakers had Kerry as a 2-1 favorite on election day and are "extremely scientific in their assessments," the Bush people had committed "the biggest crime in the history of the nation" (really, he said that!) when the ten swing states where exit polling showed Kerry ahead turned into Bush victories.

"NEVER have exit polls varied by beyond-error margins in a single state, not since 1948 when this kind of polling began. In this past election it happened in ten states, all of them swing states, all of them in Bush's favor. Coincidence? Of course not.

"Karl Rove isn't capable of conceiving and executing such a grandiose crime? Wake up. They did it. The silence of traditional media on this subject is enough to establish their newfound bankruptcy. The revolution will have to start here. I challenge every other thinker at the Huffington Post: is there any greater imperative than to reverse this crime and reestablish democracy in America? Why the mass silence? Let's go to work with the circumstantial evidence, begin to narrow from the outside in, and find some witnesses who will turn. That's how they cracked Watergate. This is bigger, and I never dreamed I would say that in my baby boomer lifetime."

Jim's ridculous rant is not worth my time to check his claim on the historical accuracy of exit polls. Why, his claim of masive fraud is as far-flung as referring to himself as a "thinker" (in itself a rank insult to some of the other writers on the blog).

I met Jim at a Brown-Harvard football game in 1976, when he was a college football announcer. His memorable words to me at that time were, "you guys got any decent beer?"

Now he is described in an HBO puff piece as a "sports announcer, movie producer and restauranteur."

Well, he does have some pretty good credits as a sports announcer, I'll give him that. As far as his restaurants, he supposedly owns two in Utah called Lakota Restaurants. The one in Park City (rated #41 in that metropolis) was billed as "the only fully interactive restaurant and bar in Park City," but it doesn't even have a website, and its phone number answers to a different business. The other in Salt Lake City has a number that has been disconnected.

As for his "movie producer" credentials, his production company, Crystal Spring Productions, also has no website, and as far as I can determine, its list of credits is confined to a failed effort to create a competitor to the fabulously mediocre reality show "The Contender" and "Welcome to Hollywood," about which very little has been said.

So, Jim, my smarmy friend, I for one hope that you reconsider your career as a political analyst (and reckless defamer) and confine your "thinking" to the boxing ring -- where at least you'll have a fighting chance to out-think your subjects.

UPDATE: For an hilariously scathing report on THP's maiden voyage, read this.

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