I’m not exactly Playboy’s demographic. However, I’m reliably told that saying “I only read it for the articles” has now become more embarrassing than just having a subscription to Playboy itself.
Mind you, there’s no longer any print edition for the smut mag, its death having been hastened by the exigencies of 2020. (And more’s the pity.) However, all you need to know about the rank dissolution infecting Playboy’s “journalism” division can best be encapsulated by its White House correspondent, Brian Karem.
If you know Karem, it’s probably for his work during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. During an unpleasant exchange with Texas GOP Sen. Ted Cruz, he said the only evidence the president’s lawyers could produce of corruption in the Biden family was that “Hunter Biden got a job, his dad was vice president. If that’s a crime, I mean, shouldn’t half of your children be in prison?”
“My children are 9 and 11,” Cruz said.
Apparently there’s only so much airbrushed smut your company can produce before you suffer lapses in the fact-checking department. What Karem lacks in the ability to Google something on his smartphone, however, he more than makes up for in the obnoxiousness department.
Karem, as Fox News noted, has been known to shout his questions during White House briefings, often out of turn and apparently under the constant misapprehension this makes them legitimate.
Nowhere was this more on display than on Nov. 13, when Karem would interrupt answers and try to get his questions answered when other reporters were called on.
According to a transcript of the news conference from Rev, Karem — identified as Speaker 1 — cut in no less than four times, usually with juvenile remarks.
“When are you going to admit that you lost?” was one such interjection. (He actually yelled a permutation of this a second time, which had roughly the same effect.)
If this sounds like the actions of a drunken boor, well, you’re right. And if it sounds like the kind of boor who would post it on their social media account, you’re also right.
— Brian J. Karem (@BrianKarem) November 20, 2020
Toward the end, McEnany was answering a question about voter fraud and an orderly transition to a potential Biden administration when Karem piped up for a third time — not to bogart another reporter’s question this time, just to scream his thoughts while she was speaking.
“We’ve said this for the better part of a year, there was a bipartisan commission that talked about and identified the real potential for fraud with mass mail-in voting,” McEnany said.
“Also, something that I would note is just we’ve talked a lot about transfer of power in the election. And it’s worth remembering that this president was never given an orderly transition of power. His presidency was never accepted.”
“That’s a lie. You were all here,” Karem shouted.
“Mystery Political Science Theater 3000,” it wasn’t.
Finally, as McEnany left the podium, there was this: “Do you understand the definition of sedition? Do you understand that he lost?” Karem said.
This was followed by CNN’s Kaitlan Collins yelling a question after McEnany.
“Thank you, I don’t call on activists,” the press secretary said, before leaving the room.
What’s sad is that both Karem and Collins seemed to intimate — and not without a certain amount of pride — that they were the target of the remark.
They deny they want to be called activists, yet watch how eagerly they dive for the same football.
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