Franken, Keillor, and Shearer: Unlikely to be seen together anywhere soon
Franken, Keillor, and Shearer: Unlikely to appear together soon.

On the November 19 episode of Harry Shearer’s long-running radio program Le Show, the writer/comedian/musician did a spot-on satire called “News From Lake Reverie,” in which an ersatz Garrison Keillor-type told a homespun tale about how the good old just folks of an ersatz Lake Wobegon ("where time stands still, and so does everything else") were coping with feelings of betrayal at the news of "The Senator"'s deplorable behavior.

The piece offered brilliant writing, uncanny voice acting, and shrewd, multi-level media and politics critique, without sacrificing a sense of morality (or letting anyone off of any hook). In that sense it's a reminder of the value of satirical, figurative language and thinking in a time when the literal feels increasingly insufficient to express one's outrage, disgust, and contempt.

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(This embed doesn't isolate individual segments, but "News From Lake Reverie" runs from 44:53-54:20.)

"News From Lake Reverie" is also exactly the kind of feature that makes the Le Show podcast worth checking out every week. (The current episode features a long and thoughtful interview with Weapons of Math Destruction author Cathy O’Neil that will give you algorithm-based nightmares and reignite—as if it ever gets a chance to dim—your disdain for Ronald Reagan.)

And of course it’s all the more—what? Intriguing? Disturbing? Trenchant? Ironic? Prescient? Appropriate? Inappropriate?—in light of both last week’s Washington Post editorial in which Keillor argued against Franken’s resignation and today’s news of Keillor being fired from Minnesota Public Radio because of “allegations of his inappropriate behavior with an individual who worked with him."

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