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January 25, 2011

Drudge Headline -- "A STAR IS BORN" -- Will Make Ryan's Rebuttal Most Important Since, Well, Ever

"The most important SOTU rebuttal" is similar in meaning to "the most hygenic hippie."

Still, Drudge moves opinion, doesn't he? Drudge shapes narratives. And for the first time in a long time, the rebuttal is not just a formality. The narrative (forced by Drudge) is that this is a duel.

Now, not everyone reads Drudge, of course, but the MFM does, even if it hates the fact that Drudge is guilty of the felony of practicing Narrative-Shaping Without A License.

I know people will object to that because I'm "raising expectations" on Paul Ryan and thus creating the circumstances by which the media can deem him to have failed. True, true, but come on, I'm really just mentioning what's already in play. I can't shape a narrative. Drudge can, I can't.

So, will he rise to the occasion? I sure hope so. I think he's got it in him.

Will the MFM credit him with winning the duel, if he does win it? No, of course not. But people will be watching; they can decide for themselves.

High stakes stuff. Usually I blow this stuff off as a joke, just a series of soundbites connected by pablum and ass-shine, but I think this one is more important than usual. Again, low bar, but whereas the typical SOTU means little and the rebuttal nothing at all, this pairing will actually have some impact, I think. A small impact, certainly, but that's more than usual.

Yes, we will be liveblogging.

My Suggestion/Guess: He will wonk out. His rebuttal will be filled with math -- too much math, too many numbers, the rhetorical critics will say. Not thematic enough, lacking in the majesty that Obama's had.

But I think that's exactly the right way to go. Even if people don't remember every number, they will take two things away: 1, the numbers are awful and the math is dire. And 2, a GOP spokesman told them the truth, in an adult manner, backed by facts and figures, while Obama bloviated about "winning the future."

I think the right way to go here (and the way he will go) is dry... but deadly.

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posted by Ace at 01:13 PM

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