January’s Five Worst Video Media Disasters

There are a few immutable laws here on Earth. The sun rises in the east. What goes up must come down. And as long as there are people, they will do stupid things.

Here, without further ado: The five worst video media disasters of January!

5. Dear NAACP: Kiss My Butt. Signed, The Gov.

Maine Governor Paul LePage declined invitations from his state’s NAACP chapter to attend events commemorating Martin Luther King Day. When asked why, he told reporters the NAACP could “kiss my butt.”

After receiving predictably awful press for making such an inflammatory remark, Mr. LePage backtracked and added an MLK Day event to his schedule – but not the one to which he was originally invited.

Click here to read my analysis of this incident, “Maine Gov: Tell the NAACP To Kiss My Butt”


4. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN): Look Me In The Eyes!

Against the wishes of her own party, Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann insisted on delivering the Tea Party’s response to the State of the Union address. She shouldn’t have jumped so quickly.

What should have been a big moment on national television for her became a train wreck consisting of zero eye contact, strange hand gestures, and poorly executed graphics.

Click here to read my analysis of this incident, “Michele Bachmann’s Odd Tea Party Response.”


3. Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) Compares Republicans to Nazis

Have you noticed how everyone’s a Nazi these days? Public figures casually throw the term around to describe offenses large and small – but none of those offenses come even close to the horrors of the Holocaust.

Tennessee Congressman Steve Cohen is far from alone in being guilty on this count. But his comparison of Republican health care talking points to Joseph Goebbel’s mass extermination of Jews is just a little over-the-top – and especially distasteful coming from the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. 

2. Owen Honors: Relieved of Duty

Earlier this month, the Navy removed Captain Owen Honors from his post as the head of the aircraft carrier Enterprise for producing offensive videos.

In an effort to entertain his crew, he produced several videos in 2006 and 2007. According to The New York Times, the videos contained simulated masturbation, the simulated eating of feces, and a simulated rectal exam. 

Charming, Captain.

Click here to read my analysis of this incident, “Do You Know Someone As Offensive As This Guy?”

 1. Sarah Palin’s “Blood Libel”

On the morning of President Obama’s speech from Tucson, Sarah Palin released a video blaming the media for committing “blood libel.” No matter that the term is an anti-Semitic slur referring to Jews murdering Christians.

Democrats predictably reacted angrily to the video. But her poll numbers also plummeted with independents and Republicans. Instead of using the moment to expand her base by issuing a gracious statement, Ms. Palin narrowed it instead, leading many political prognosticators to declare her 2012 hopes dead.

Related: Top Ten Media Disasters of 2010