Episode 7010 (1/18/2011) – Cornel West

Colbert Report Episode Guide 150pxEPISODE NUMBER: 7010 (January 18, 2011)
GUESTS: Cornel West
SEGMENTS: Mika Brzezinski Experiences Palin Fatigue, The Word – Disintegration, Coma Cozy
VIDEOS: Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Normally I’d talk about all kinds of aspects of the show, but today I think I’ll let you guys do that in the comments, because I’d like to dedicate my time today to relive that hysterical and brilliant and passionate speech given by Stephen Colbert last night to “Morning Joe” co-host, Mika Brzezinski. Because these kind of moments make me remember why I do this every day.

Mika, you need to buck up. I know you think this story has no purpose other than keeping Sarah Palin’s name in the headlines for another news cycle. I know you think she has nothing to offer the national dialogue and that her speeches are just coded talking points mixed with words picked up at random from a thesaurus. I know you think Sarah Palin is at best a self-promoting ignoramus and at worst a shameless media troll who will abuse any platform to deliver dog-whistle encouragement to a far right base that may include possible insurrectionists. I know you think her reality show was pathetically unstatesmanlike, and at the same time I know you believe it also represents the pinnacle of her potential and that her transparent, transparent desperation to be a celebrity so completely eclipsed her interest in public service so long ago that there would be more journalistic integrity on reporting on one of the lesser Kardashian’s ass implants. I know, I know that when you arrive at the office each day you say a silent prayer that maybe, just maybe Sarah Palin will at long last shut up for ten f@#king minutes. I know because I can see it in your eyes. Well guess what, Mika. That’s the gig. And it’s only January of 2011, kiddo. And you have a minimum of 2 more years of this ahead of you. You want to stay in this game? You dig deep. You find another gear. You show up to work every day, get your hair and makeup done, you slap on a smile, get out there on TV and repeat what Sarah Palin said on Hannity last night right into the lens. You know – news. I have faith in you kid. You can do it! I’ll see you in New Hampshire … I’ll buy.

God bless America, and God bless Stephen Colbert.

Stephen Colbert Coma Cozy


  1. “more journalistic integrity in covering one of the lesser Kardashian’s butt implants” Great line!!

  2. Armillariella says:

    Holy guacamole, that entire Palin rant was a work of art. At each line I thought, “oh no he dinnit”, and then he not only did, but he went another step further. I hope all the writers who contributed to that got a free double dip ice cream cone.

  3. Loved, loved, loved the Palin segment. I wanna print that out and frame it.

  4. lockhart43 says:

    I cannot tell you how much I needed this show tonight. After an incredibly long, incredibly frustrating day of classes, I was in desperate need of my Jon and Stephen Daily Hour of Sanity. So a big Thank You to Jon (and Neil deGrasse Tyson!) and Stephen for making me laugh and smile so hard that my face hurt.

    “I know that when you arrive at the office each day, you say a silent prayer that maybe, just maybe, Sarah Palin will at long last, shut up for ten f***ing minutes.” I squealed with glee when Stephen said that! Definitely my favorite line of the night. Though “Here a poor, there a poor, everywhere a poor poor” is a close second. :)
    The Word was *sigh* EPIC. The whole Forever Lazy segment had me giggling uncontrollably. And I just loved the Cornel West interview. West and Stephen together equals absolute JOY. I really loved this entire episode. Has this been a great month of shows or what? *standing ovation*

    • “I know that when you arrive at the office each day, you say a silent prayer that maybe, just maybe, Sarah Palin will at long last, shut up for ten f***ing minutes.” I squealed with glee when Stephen said that! Definitely my favorite line of the night.

      Oh, my god, mine, too. I was, like, spastic cheering/squealing/clapping/what have you through that whole speech. I was trying so hard to stay quiet ’cause people were sleeping, but I couldn’t help it, that whole bit just made me SO immensely happy. One of those moments where afterward you look at the TV and go, “I love you, Stephen.” :D. Which I freely admit I did.

      The “Word” segments have been searing lately. I’ve been loving them, and tonight was no exception (that story is insane. Seriously, what the hell?). I love the way he pointed out the complete absurdity and confusing nature of that situation/reasoning.

      “Forever Lazy”, geez, I was laughing so hard. The tailgate bit, the “Coma Cozy”, all of it…just hysterical.

      And Cornel. Oh, man. What an interview/discussion. Talk of love (“trickle-down love”-heeee) and justice and…wow. So amazing.

      I fully agree with Gratefull on “Daily Show”, too, that show was fantastic tonight as well. What an hour’s worth of programming. Can’t beat that.

      • This! This! All of this!!The Palin rant had me pumping my fist in the air, shouting “Yeah!” the whole time! It was indeed a work of art as Armillariella said! And I want to print it out and frame it, but I don’t want to hang it on my wall, I want to send it to Palin!!Every time Cornel West is on the show, it almost feels like I’ve been to an old-fashioned revival meeting. He is so filled with love and joy, I absolutely love him! How about a Colbert/Stewart/West 2012 ticket?? America needs so much help, I think it’ll take all 3 of them!! Oooh! And we can have Neil deGrasse Tyson on the ticket too, for good measure, just simply cos he’s awesome!!

        Well done to you, DB, for typing up the rant in it’s entirety!! I squealed with joy when I saw it!! HatTip HatTip!

        • How about a Colbert/Stewart/West 2012 ticket?? America needs so much help, I think it’ll take all 3 of them!! Oooh! And we can have Neil deGrasse Tyson on the ticket too, for good measure, just simply cos he’s awesome!!

          I am all for this. 110% for it. That’d be wonderful.

          I like your comment about feeling like you were at a revival meeting with Cornel there. I kind of felt like saying “Amen!” a couple times. I loved his quotes about what tenderness and justice were for love, and I liked Stephen pointing out the difference between hope and optimism. I actually wrote down all those quotes in a notebook, LOL.

  5. somuch2kno says:

    Stephen was on fire tonight!! I thought he peaked with the dizzyingly escalating Palin rant – “deliver dog-whistle encouragement to a far right base”, “her reality show was… the pinacle of her potential”, “say a silent prayer that… Sarah Palin will at long last shut up for 10 f^@#ing minutes” (THAT one actually made me whoop out loud!). But his co-preaching with Brother West was a free-form, awe-inspiring commingling of truth and truthiness that dazzled me so much I had to rewind it repeatedly to discern each delicious layer of banter and brilliance. I go to bed supremely satisfied tonight.

    • somuch2kno says:

      I also LOVE that after all that he couldn’t resist one last, “She has got to grow a pair!” probably just because it popped into his head and so perfectly understated the previous 2-minute express train “pep talk”.

      And thank you to Mika Brzezinski, for providing the circumstances for the writers to so eloquently detail how SHE feels, because “Stephen” would NEVER say those things about Sarah Palin. ;-)

  6. Gratefull says:

    *Slowly stands and claps, claps, claps*

    Well done Stephen and TCR!!!!! and Jon and TDS too!

    Thank you! *claps claps claps*

  7. I don’t know how to put into words how epic that show was. The epic pwning of Palin. The Word. The Forever Lazy. The INTERVIEW. I knew it would be a good interview as soon as Cornell West said the show had been on fire, but man, I was not prepared for just how – wow. Brilliant. I totally agree with the comment from Angela above – I lost count of how many times I said, “I love this man.”

    And Neil deGrasse Tyson (aka God) was wonderful on TDS as well! Jesus CHRIST I LOVE these SHOWS.

  8. Whoops, left a bit out of my comment – meant to put that when Cornell said the show had been on fire, I knew he must be an it-getter, therefore his interview would be a good one.

  9. I didn’t think anything could beat the time he called Palin a “f$@&ing retard,” but that rant was epic. I love those moments where he gets to say exactly what he (and every other reasonable, intelligent human being) truly believes, and get away with it.

    So much energy in last night’s shows! Even Neil deGrasse Tyson practically skipped to the desk for his interview.

    • I thought of that other Palin moment, too. This ranks up there with that, I’d say.

      Yeah, I like that, too. The joys of pretending to be a character, eh? I really can’t believe what he can get away with saying and doing on his show sometimes.

  10. friedthing says:

    Wow!! Wow, wow, wow! That was a fantastic show in EVERY WAY!! I don’t really have anything to add, just more agreement with everyone. Emmy, please!

  11. I loved the Palin segment, you could tell at the start of the rant people weren’t sure where he was taking this, then he got to ‘self-promoting ignoramus’ and the initial cheers began. From there each line was bolder and cut deeper than the previous, a perfect accumulation that swept everybody along. So glad he just went for it!! Re-reading it makes the ‘I know you think’ before each line really stand out. Their clever deviousness at pretending this is the opinion of Mika and not Stephen is gorgeous. Also found the coma cozy hilarious. Thankyou for showing how stupid all the products in those horrible ads are. Sending a lot of love your way Stephen/writers!!!!!

  12. Even Neil deGrasse Tyson practically skipped to the desk for his interview.

    Hahaha!! I haven’t seen it yet, but that cracks me up. I’ll have to catch it later when I get home.

    I love a good rant, and Stephen is the best at them. That Palin rant was gold because it so perfectly summed up what she has become since her first appearance on the national political scene, particularly the part about her desperation to be a celebrity completely eclipsing her interest in public service. I’m suffering from some serious Palin fatigue myself — I don’t just want her to shut up, I want her to go the f#@k away. And nearly as bad as Palin herself are all the tiresome Palin haters who go into high gear any time she says or does the slightest little thing. I’m not a Palin supporter at all, and I’m not a hater either, but seriously, if all the energy that was expended on hating Palin was redirected toward something meaningful, the world would be a better place. (And that’s my rant for the day…)

    The rest of the show was brilliant, too. I giggled through the entire Lazy Forever/Coma Cozy segment because, really, every bit of it was so hilarious. The interview was amazing, I loved it. I’m not quite sure how they got onto the topic of Sweeney Todd, but that amused me a lot. And all their talk about justice and love was so perfect.

    God, I love this show…

  13. I voted for the opening monologue, because it was so refreshing and epic, but the interview with Cornel West was wonderful as always. I know Neil deGrasse Tyson is an astrophysicist (and a charismatic and hilarious guest), but West is truly a brilliant and inspiring man. I would be petrified to sit in a lecture hall with that guy, because I would be in awe the entire time. Does he do audiobooks? If not, he should.

    • I imagine there may well be some floating around somewhere. I must admit at this point I’m not all that familiar with his works-certainly heard of them, and read/seen interviews with him, but need to check out his works more. Next time I’m at work, I’m definitely hunting some of his writings down.

      Anyone else notice when Cornel mentioned Stephen Sondheim and Stephen’s eyes lit up :D? It made me think of the interview with him from some time back.

      • “Anyone else notice when Cornel mentioned Stephen Sondheim and Stephen’s eyes lit up”

        So it WASN’T just me! I noticed that too!

  14. riftcanyondreams says:

    Yes, yes and yes – I agree with everyone, the Palin rant was fantastic. I just sat there grinning and nodding and being totally stoked about what he was saying. “I know that when you arrive at the office each day, you say a silent prayer that maybe, just maybe, Sarah Palin will at long last, shut up for ten f***ing minutes.” – A million hat tips to Stephen and the writers!!

    And wow, that interview was brilliant – loved it right from the start. The Coma Cozy sign off had me in stitches.

    This was an utterly great episode.

  15. Galadriel says:

    I found myself applauding both TDS and The Report several times.

    Jon’s “Palin-drome” bit and Stephen’s Palin Fatigue rant had me cheering and whooping, grateful that these guys keep saying what we all wish we could say.

    The Zodiac (TDS) and Coma Cozy segments had me laughing out loud.

    I just adore Neil DeGrasse Tyson (Kneel before Neil!) and Cornel West is an inspiration — magnificent guests, both.

    Great screencap of the dog-food-bag booties!

  16. I really have nothing left to add to what everyone else has already said. Both TCR and TDS were on fire last night! It made me happy. :-)

  17. Karenatasha says:

    Oh, my god. OHHHH my god.

    *Sitting here in shock and awe.* [That’s the REAL shock and awe, the stuff that feels good, great, unf$#$@^#ing believable!]

    I was out last night and couldn’t watch the show until this evening. In the meantime, while looking over NFZ quickly during the day, I was getting indications that something amazing had gone down during this episode. I successfully managed to avoid any advance glimpses so I could experience the wonder for myself. What anticipation. But even in my wildest dreams, I didn’t imagine this.

    This was simply the…best…show…EVER. No one has delivered such a brilliant verbal smackdown to Ms. Palin. It was absolutely fearless, incredibly scathing, and thoroughly breathtaking. I want to scream out to the world: “Listen to this! Listen to what Stephen’s saying! Don’t get fooled by her!”

    It’s rare that there’s something even better than a Word…especally when it was such an great Word, too. But for this very special rant, all I can say is: Stephen, I bow down to you.

  18. Instant classic!
    At the point of “you know – news” he just blew me away. Totally.
    I guess that could become kind of a winged word … maybe.
    Many thanks for the transcript.

  19. I know I’m late but ITA with everyone, this show was so on the money, so brilliant in the delivery and execution that it left me open-mouthed in awe when I was laughing with tears.


  20. mrtigger001 says:

    The Palin rant was very similar in style to his roast of Chevy Chase, and just as brutal: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=taPTqd8g7yg

    In short, loved it.

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