The Self Interview, an Editorial Satire
One of the most unusual interviews in journalism took place last week in Cold Spring. Gordon Stewart interviewed himself about the charges that he did not write the Jimmy Carter “malaise” speech. Now the purpose of someone interviewing himself, we assume, is that if you get to ask the questions and answer the questions, nothing can go wrong.
Actually, what you saw in Gordon Stewart’s “evidence explanation” last week never addressed the main issue. However, because of the carelessness of someone at his little handout paper, we actually have found the outtakes from the Gordon interviewing the Gordon, and here they are. This is the part he apparently didn’t want you to see.
Questioner (Gordon Stewart) and then answerer (Gordon Stewart).
Q: Gordon, you gave a lengthy and detailed answer to the question “why do you keep telling people you wrote Jimmy Carter’s famous malaise speech when you didn’t?”
A: I never said that I wrote that speech ALONE.
Q: But you keep telling people you wrote it, and in fact there’s ample proof of others who did write it. You put together old scraps of White House paper and pictures of yourself 40 years ago with a convoluted explanation that you were “present,” which no one has ever questioned. In the end you never really answered the question. How do you think you’ll get away with that?
A: Well of course I’m an intellectual and the people in Cold Spring simply aren’t. Besides, they agree with me politically and therefore I’ll never be challenged on it.
Q: But Gordon, all of your publicity for a local play and your bios say you were directing Elephant Man on Broadway when you were interrupted with a collapsed lung. None of the research on Elephant Man lists you as directing the play on Broadway. The person who did direct Elephant Man was a man named Jack Hofsiss and he apparently won many awards for directing it as did the play itself. You were simply not mentioned anywhere with Elephant Man on Broadway.
A: I’m furious about that. Another man won every award and yet I was the original director, as all my press material says. This is outrageous and could only have been orchestrated by the PCN&R.
Q: Since there is no corroborating information anywhere in the theater world, and you have been accused of inventing a resume, how do you feel about being called “the great imposter?”
A: That’s another outrage. Tony Curtis got all the credit for being The Great Imposter when in fact I played that starring role.
Q: How are you going to explain to the people of Cold Spring that there’s no evidence you wrote the Carter speech or directed Elephant Man on Broadway? You also denied being a business executive; however, your resume says you were Vice President of Public Relations at the American Stock Exchange, and you recently attacked someone who said you were an art collector although in the New Yorker magazine two years ago a top reporter said you had taken him to see your art collection.
A: These inconsistencies are not relevant. Remember, it’s those terrible Ailes people who don’t need to be here in Cold Spring.
Q: Many claim the Ailes have made an important contribution—they’ve invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in the PCN&R, return any and all profits to the community in scholarships and other charities, improved local coverage, did not push their personal point of view, contributed to various events here, and appear to be good citizens – but probably don’t agree with you politically. Is that a problem?
A: There’s no room for 2 opinions in this village and there’s no room for anyone who doesn’t agree with me and my friends. We know what’s right, we control the dialogue in this community and those Ailes are nothing but dividers for having a different point of view.
Q: We can’t find any evidence they’ve expressed their political point of view in their newspaper.
A: It doesn’t matter. The people who are on my side hate the Ailes and hate Fox News, where he works, and hate his success and really don’t want to hear anybody’s point of view other than their own. Anybody who disagrees with us are dividers.
Q: Well perhaps the Ailes and the PCN&R actually believe in America and believe in freedom of speech and freedom of the press and welcome different points of view. Could that be possible?
A: No, it is not possible. There should be only 1 point of view, and I have it.
Q: Is it possible you are envious?
A: No. Yes. No. Yes. No. They have no right to own that paper.
Q: Is your point of view then that you did write the Carter speech and you did direct Elephant Man on Broadway? We’ll leave out Tony Curtis for the moment.
A: Yes, that’s true. And anybody who says it isn’t true is a divider.
Q: Thank you Mr. Stewart, do you have anything else to add?
A: Yes, I know there are people who believe I envy the Ailes and the PCN&R and that’s why I continue to viciously attack them.
Q: But envy is a sin, Mr. Stewart. Isn’t that a problem?
A: No, that’s a religious connotation. We need to get religion out of society and let intellectuals like me run the government. The government should be the highest authority.
Q: Thank you Mr. Stewart, do you have anything else you’d like to add?
A: Only that I am a concert pianist, former Vice President of the American Stock Exchange, graduated magna cum laude from Oberlin College, I’m an intellectual, I know what’s right for education in this village, I’m a wonderful public speaker, I was elected as Businessman of the Year even though my business is not yet successful and I have an art collection which I only show to certain people and deny to others.
Actually I’m rich, but always go to other people for money to fund things because I don’t like to spend my own money. My directing of Elephant Man had nothing to do with Broadway, but there was an off-Broadway version at St. Peter’s Church which I did direct and therefore Jack Hofsiss never should have won the Tony for Outstanding Director. I should have won it. I hate long-winded people who try to dominate public events and I especially hate big egos. I’ve lived in Cold Spring 7 years and by now should be running the village, and did I mention the Ailes are no good? Oh and by the way, I’m very tall.
Q: Thank you, Mr. Stewart.