Irony warriors

I was thinking as I read my beloved London papers that the biggest separation between Mother England and child America is irony; they’re so much better at it than we are.

But then there’s Stephen Colbert. Michael Scherer writes at Salon about Colbert’s performance at the White House press party:

Then he turned to the president of the United States, who sat tight- lipped just a few feet away. “I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message, that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound — with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.”

It was Colbert’s crowning moment. His imitation of the quintessential GOP talking head — Bill O’Reilly meets Scott McClellan — uncovered the inner workings of the ever-cheapening discourse that passes for political debate. He reversed and flattened the meaning of the words he spoke.