Either as a result of a major weekend push by Giuliani’s handlers or by pure serendipity, today wound up as a kind of Meet-the-real-Rudy Media Monday. The AP’s folksy profile, which started things off, illustrates why global newswires shouldn’t be in the folksy-profile business. “Rudy Giuliani minces no words and suffers no fools,” the piece starts. “He eats peanuts with the shells still on.” It goes on like this, about his tender-age love of boxing and opera and his “volcanic eruptions of pique,” basically verging on a Chuck Norris joke (Giuliani’s tears cure 9/11 first responders’ syndrome. Too bad he never cries) throughout.
Is this kind of singular personality — machismo laced with Catholic guilt and a barely suppressed kinky side — an asset or a liability? Glad you asked! Here’s the Daily News with a similarly pegless, chin-stroking essay entitled “Rudy Giuliani’s Off-the-Cuff Style Has Its Risks.” Chief among those: a high probability of saying something really stupid. Like that one time Rudy mentioned that he’d be fine with Judi sitting in on Cabinet meetings. Or that other time when he said he’d spent more time at Ground Zero than some first responders. Or when, in New Hampshire, he pretended to be a Red Sox fan.
Or are all these outrages the work of the Rudy-hating liberal media? Yet another think piece, in the American Spectator, says yes: In fact, Giuliani has “slowly begun to supplant the president as the leading hate figure among liberals.” With all due disrespect, Rudy’s got a ways to go there, which is not preventing the Spectator from declaring him the shoo-in nominee: He’s a divider, not a uniter!
In the meantime, amid all this unasked-for deluge of deep thoughts and trivia, a lone voice — the Times’, no less — chimed in with a plea for yet more Rudy. Why no TV ads, Jim Rutenberg wants to know? “Mr. Giuliani’s continued absence from the airwaves has puzzled his rivals,” he writes. “That is likely to continue for at least a while longer.” Perhaps his no-fool-suffering, toddler-boxing, opera-loving, husk-crunching, volcanically eruptive personality simply can’t be contained in a mere television spot. Judging from today’s crop, it takes at least 15,000 words. —Michael Idov
Giuliani Grew Up With Defiant Streak, Suffers No Fools [AP via Newsday]
Rudy Giuliani’s Off-the-Cuff Style Has Its Risks [Daily News]
Hating Rudy [American Spectator via Opinion Journal]