ONTD Political

Maddow and Kushner at Joe's pub, talk, be awesome, etc.

10:11 am - 12/05/2012

Photograph by Steve Shevett.


MADDOW + KUSHNER = ADOPT ME


Admit it: you want Rachel Maddow and Tony Kushner to be your gay lefty adoptive parents. Or at least your aunt and uncle you can talk with about the military-industrial complex over Thanksgiving dinner. One’s the giddy, sarcastic lady making fun of Mitt Romney on your television every night; the other wrote that movie about Lincoln that you know you have to see before the Oscars. Put them in a room and you’ve got more liberal fairy dust than the time Newt Gingrich was glitter-bombed.



And so it was for the two hundred or so New Yorkers at Joe’s Pub last night, where Maddow and Kushner teamed up for the Public Theatre’s “Duets” series. Toe-to-toe in comfy-looking armchairs, they both wore black shirts, dark jeans, glasses, and sensible shoes. It was like Communist-chic Thing One and Thing Two.


Over the ninety-minute discussion, they covered everything from Pat Buchanan and Mary Todd Lincoln to video games (Maddow’s latest side interest) and needlepoint (Kushner’s). Below, some highlights:


Maddow on the word “progressive”: “The right calls liberals ‘progressives’ now as an epithet, because they think it’s a Woodrow Wilsonian conspiracy to destroy the country from within. It’s a Glenn Beck thing. They’ve decided that progressive is scary, so when they swear at me on Twitter in all caps they use the word ‘progressive.’ Like, ‘I’ve unmasked you, progressive!’ I think progressive is the name of an insurance company.”


Kushner on the Republican Party: “If they get rid of the theocratic part, because that’s not bringing them very much anymore, and they get rid of the libertarian part, and they saw how well it worked to come out of the closet as just plutocrats who were out to get everyone’s money and stuff it into their pockets—it didn’t work very well for Romney—what are they?”


Maddow on Mitt Romney getting forty-seven per cent of the vote: “God is a numerologist. And kind of a dick.”


Kushner on Republicans who praise “Lincoln”: “It’s been a very interesting thing to have written something that suddenly Newt Gingrich, Rupert Murdoch, David Brooks, and Ross Douthat like.”


Maddow on bartending after the White House Correspondents Dinner: “Scott Brown won’t talk to me, but I know what he drinks. I gave Sarah Palin a Diet Coke!”


Kushner on theatre and politics: “There’s a kind of a fundamental irresponsibility in playwriting, and the strength of playwriting comes from that irresponsibility.”


Maddow on liberal infighting: “The criticism of Obama from the left that I can’t take, that I find enraging—I think of it as the Nader stuff. ‘Oh, they’re all the same. The parties are a two-headed Hydra.’ No, not true! They’re very, very different, and therefore we need to demand and expect the best of this guy in the White House and his Administration. This is pretty much as good as it gets, so let’s make it work.”


Kushner on Lindsey Graham: “He gets gayer and gayer every day. Any day now he’s going to say, ‘Aw, The hell with it! I want you to meet mah husband.’ ” (Maddow: “Now definitely no Republicans are going to talk to me.”)


Maddow’s question for Kushner: “Do you listen to music when you write?” (Answer: no.)


Kushner’s question for Maddow: “Do you feel that you’re playing a character?” (Answer: “It’s not a fake me, but it is a slice of me. Like, I am a person who has depression, and I don’t let depressed Rachel on television.”)


What Maddow would want to ask Abraham Lincoln: “I would want advice about the thing that I think is the defining feature of twenty-first century America, which is that we are warlike.”


What Kushner would want Maddow to ask Abraham Lincoln: “How did you like Steven Spielberg’s movie?”

Source is so jealous.

back_track 5th-Dec-2012 10:50 pm (UTC)
wow I wish I had been able to go to this. They are both such awesome, smart, funny people. Is there a full transcript going around?
agentsculder 5th-Dec-2012 10:56 pm (UTC)
I hope there is because I would LOVE to read it.

I am surprised there wasn't a space-time rift that engulfed Manhattan due to the high concentration of awesome all in one place!
moonbladem 6th-Dec-2012 12:52 am (UTC)
Same here... I'd love to read the transcript!
mycenaes 5th-Dec-2012 11:05 pm (UTC)
OMG TONY KUSHNER IS LIKE MY FAVORITE MODERN PLAYWRIGHT OMG I'M LIKE SCREAMING SILENTLY IN MY HEAD

like, no lie, I want an Angels in America tattoo real badly. And I was in a production of A Bright Room Called Day and fkldfhjkdsfhjkdhfkd.

(and it goes without saying that Maddow is awesome too! I just never thought I'd see the day where Kushner was on _p, lol.)
redstar826 5th-Dec-2012 11:48 pm (UTC)
Admit it: you want Rachel Maddow and Tony Kushner to be your gay lefty adoptive parents. Or at least your aunt and uncle you can talk with about the military-industrial complex over Thanksgiving dinner.

No lies detected.

a_phoenixdragon 5th-Dec-2012 11:55 pm (UTC)
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crossfire 6th-Dec-2012 12:13 am (UTC)
Maddow on liberal infighting: “The criticism of Obama from the left that I can’t take, that I find enraging—I think of it as the Nader stuff. ‘Oh, they’re all the same. The parties are a two-headed Hydra.’ No, not true! They’re very, very different, and therefore we need to demand and expect the best of this guy in the White House and his Administration. This is pretty much as good as it gets, so let’s make it work.”

HDU bring the idea of compromise into politics, what are you, some sort of mindless Obama-stan? All you have to do is read something from the Socialist Worker. Obama is the WORST PRESIDENT EVER, please pay attention.
ms_maree 6th-Dec-2012 12:14 am (UTC)
Who has ever said that Obama is the worst president ever? Well, apart from the conservatives*, but that goes without saying.

*Conservative by American standards.

Edited at 2012-12-06 12:18 am (UTC)
hinoema 6th-Dec-2012 05:08 am (UTC)
The posters here who regularly use SW as a source, I'm guessing.
ms_maree 6th-Dec-2012 05:11 am (UTC)
You're guessing? Well, you've totally convinced me.
sesmo 6th-Dec-2012 12:47 am (UTC)
Did not know that Rachel Maddow had depression.

She is awesome. So is he. I want videos.
tabaqui 6th-Dec-2012 12:58 am (UTC)
“The criticism of Obama from the left that I can’t take, that I find enraging—I think of it as the Nader stuff. ‘Oh, they’re all the same. The parties are a two-headed Hydra.’ No, not true! They’re very, very different, and therefore we need to demand and expect the best of this guy in the White House and his Administration. This is pretty much as good as it gets, so let’s make it work.”

YES YES YES. Holy crap.
wrestlingdog 6th-Dec-2012 01:39 am (UTC)
I think that's my favorite quote from all this. That's an argument that drives me absolutely out of my tree.
tabaqui 6th-Dec-2012 02:01 am (UTC)
Jayzus, yes. It made me *insane* all during the campaigning.
merri_chan 6th-Dec-2012 01:03 am (UTC)
IS THERE VIDEO PLEASE GODS TELL ME THERE'S VIDEO
wrestlingdog 6th-Dec-2012 01:34 am (UTC)
My reaction exactly.
callmetothejedi 6th-Dec-2012 01:41 am (UTC)
I don't know why, but for some reason I thought Tony Kushner had died a few years ago. I mean, I'm glad that he's not dead and that he's alive and still doing cool things and chatting with Rachel Maddow. I know he wrote Angels in America, but I had no idea he wrote the screenplay for Lincoln.
oystermato 6th-Dec-2012 12:34 pm (UTC)
I love Rachel even more now.
seashell_bikini 6th-Dec-2012 01:57 pm (UTC)
I am disapoint there are not more gifs and pictures of Rachel in this thread.

I didn't know she has depression. I love her more now.
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