Oprah Channels George W. Bush
Three months ago, in what the talk show
host termed a “radical departure,” Winfrey announced that “A
Million Little Pieces,” author James Frey's nonfiction memoir of his vomit-caked
years as an alcoholic, drug addict, and criminal, was her latest selection for
the world's most powerful book club. In an October
26 show entitled “The Man Who Kept Oprah Awake At Night,” Winfrey
hailed Frey's graphic and coarse book as “like nothing you've ever read
before. … In emotional filmed testimonials, employees of Winfrey's Harpo Productions
lauded the book as revelatory, with some choking back tears. When the camera
then returned to a damp-eyed Winfrey, she said, “I'm crying 'cause these
are all my Harpo family so, and we all loved the book so much.”
But a six-week investigation by
The Smoking Gun reveals that there may be a lot less to love about Frey's runaway
hit, which has sold more than 3.5 million copies and, thanks to Winfrey, has
sat atop The New York Times nonfiction paperback best seller list for the past
15 weeks. Next to the latest Harry Potter title, Nielsen BookScan reported Friday,
Frey's book sold more copies in the U.S. in 2005–1.77 million–than
any other title, with the majority of that total coming after Winfrey's selection.
MAN WHO CONNED OPRAH
People say Bill Clinton affected mores through his tawdry bj adultery.
However, no one has more adversely affected our culture with the I WON'T TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR SCREWING UP
– I'M GOING TO STAND MY GROUND EVEN THOUGH I'M WRONG standard more than our
inimitable president, George W. Bush. He even got Oprah to channel him!
Watching replay after replay, listening to the TV giant's save
the author campaign, I was mortified.
Phoning in last night on “Larry King,” Oprah Winfrey
gave spin a wowzapalooza bitch slap only an unchallenged and hallowed TV queen
could offer up.
“What is relevant is that
he was a drug addict … and stepped out of that history to be the man he is
today and to take that message to save other people and allow them to save themselves,”
Winfrey said Wednesday night in a surprise phone call to CNN's Larry King, who
was interviewing Frey on his live television program.
Dismisses Claims About Frey Memoir
It's up to the publisher, I heard Oprah say on one clip. “Much
ado about nothing”? Excuse me? James Frey openly admits he embellished
and changed his “memoir” so it wouldn't be boring. That means it's
Picture George W. Bush saying there are WMD… yes there are…
oh, yes there are… no, I'm not kidding… — time elapses — … there are
no WMD. So what did Bush do? He changed his rationale… Saddam was a bad man
and I'm glad we bombed him anyway. And it even took George W. Bush 3 years to
admit those errors, which reeked of caveats galore.
On a scale not nearly as important to life and death, but certainly
critical to cultural integrity issues and the importance of telling the truth, things that are falling by the wayside in this country today. Oprah
stands by Mr. Frey, even after he openly admits he embellished a work of non-fiction,
including changing some of the facts so his readers wouldn't be bored. The moral
relevancy of Oprah's unabashed spinelessness and inability to admit Frey was
wrong and that he conned her boggles the mind.
Frankly put, her ego made her do it. Obviously, Oprah's
ego won't allow her to admit that she's been made a fool, that her audience
and book club were used, with that same group now left to twist, because of Frey's untruths that Oprah is shilling. Ms. Winfrey
would evidently rather channel a George W. Bush-type rationalization as to why
she still stands by her man, instead of actually saying Frey was wrong, she
trusted him, so she recommended his book, but now she rescinds that recommendation.
Instead, Oprah offers up a response that is oh, so George W. Bush.
“Non-fiction” is meant to be an author's very best TRUTHFUL
rendering of the story of his or her life or an experience within that life.
When you change the facts of a “non-fiction” book so it won't be boring
or whatever, what you do is make the book fiction, with parts based
on a true story. That's even being kind, if you ask me. Having written one of
the most unsuccessful,
as far as sales, non-fiction books in publishing history, I know a little
bit about writing non-fiction. You are obliged to tell the truth to the very
best of your ability to recall it. That's not to say an author can't make honest mistakes, but openly admitting you chose not to tell the truth so you'll get better sales
because of its soap opera sensationalism? I don't think so.
Frey's publisher weighed in today.
“Nonfiction is not a single monolithic
category as defined by the best-seller list,” she said yesterday when asked
to comment on her husband's remarks. “Memoir is personal recollection.
It is not absolute fact. It's how one remembers what happened. That is different
from history and criticism and biography, and they cannot be measured by the
Says He Made Up Some Details
Gay Talese, the publisher's husband also weighed in on MSNBC,
saying he disagrees with his wife.
At the core of Oprah “I'm standing by my man” Winfrey's
channeling of George W. Bush's moral truth relativism* is the tragic reality that Bush's
morality and truth mentality has crept deep into our society, even affecting
our most respected citizens.
It's doing a lot more damage than Bill's bj ever did.
America is now operating on the theory that you no longer have
to take responsibility for being wrong if you're willing to stand up and simply
proclaim “I'm not.” That you can bring your mother on Larry King to
stand by you, while a public figure vouches for your con job, without ever having
to make reparations to the duped, which are the almost 2 milliion readers who
bought into your bull. That Mr. Frey, aided a abetted by none other than Oprah
Winfrey, is allowed to not only perpetrate a fraud on the American public, but
continue that fraud with the blessings of a mega powerful television benefactor
signals that the moral relativism* and integrity of truth issues of George W.
Bush have now become the standard to which everyone can cop. Now that's a legacy.