Awkward takes #1 for most awkward word

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pboPrezBo’s infamous Ahmadinejad opener has gotten bad press before, but never quite this bad: he beat out David Hasselhoff, David Vitter, Rosie, Paris, Miss Teen South Carolina, Caroline Giuliani, and (wait for it) BRITNEY SPEARS for most awkward moment of 2007, according to TIME‘s top 10 list

Maybe he should stick to hair extensions and a sparkling lingerie ensemble next time? 



  1. awkward

    probably. but seriously, civility doesn't mean making everyone feel warm and fuzzy all the time. if ahmadinejad felt 'awkward' great. he should.

  2. agreed  

    prezbo is the shit. It was certainly rude, but it wasn't awkward, unless you were an ahmadinejad supporter. (And if they felt awkward, well, that's surely a good thing.)

    viva prezbo

  3. isn't it  

    a little awkward in retrospect, in light of the new intelligence estimate re iran?

    i know that wasn't the focus of prezbo's speech...maybe it wasn't even in there. i'm having trouble remembering now.

    • Zach

      The NIE downplays the threat of Iran as a nuclear power, but doesn't detract from the fact that it's a despotic, mostly fundamentalist regime. One of the protest contingents was arguing that the whole event was a run-up for war ("he gassed his own people!!!"-esque hysteria)... in hindsight, it actually looks like a strong indictment of the human rights record of a country we're NOT going to war with. Bully!

      • Anonymous  

        Lulz. The country is strongly parliamentary. Stop being foolish. At worst, that would make it an oligarchy, but it's certainly not a despotic state.

        It's an English dictionary. Use it.

        • despotism  

          It is a regime that supports values antithetical to basic human decency, and its laws infringe upon basic human freedoms. Therefore, I certainly would call it despotic- whether a despotism of the majority or not.

  4. confused  

    They quote PrezBo saying that holocaust denial is "ridiculous" but then go on to claim in the very next sentence that "Many in the U.S. agreed" that the remarks were shameful? Am I missing something here? Unless this was incredibly subtle irony, I'd like to see them back up such a sweeping generalization. Or have we gotten to the point where "many agreed" is rock solid defense?

  5. also  

    the remarks actually were very awkward for anyone with a sense of how prez bo would probably have been treated in iran if he had received an official invitation to make a speach there.

    once i ended up detained in a police station in the middle east (but not in iran) for a few hours, a bunch of americans and a citizen of that country (who ended up being the only one really accused of anything). we were still guests, and they served us all tea.

  6. i think  

    in the end it came down to how much he wanted manhattanville and for the columbia campaign to succeed.

    the introduction was over the top, and while prezbo will never admit it, it was made that way at the last minute to placate someone powerful.

  7. this again?  

    Unless you can show that his remarks were false, then what would have been more awkward is if Bollinger blindly ignored and thus silently consented to the atrocities and abuses occurring in Iran. Awkward is nothing compared to the shit that happens in that country, and others. Awkward is an episode of The Office. Systematic human rights violations are the state of affairs in Iran.

    If only more of us were brave enough to say it out loud.

  8. The King of Spain  

    Once again, order has been brought to the world not by LISTS of words, not abstract and meaningless GEOMETRY.

  9. Reason

    It's not an all-or-none deal. PrezBo could have criticized and challenged Ahmadinejad without being quite so acerbic. It's not that Ahmadinejad didn't deserve it, but it's a realist question of how it advances the very viewpoints that PrezBo was standing up for. The bottom line is that the introduction could have been far more productive in the way of winning hearts and minds.

  10. Sprinkles

    PrezBo was brilliant. Just look at that Amnesty International expect him to be cordial to Ahmadinejad after that? Vigorous debate isn't supposed to feel good.

    • wtf?!  

      I don't understand why everyone here wanted to ride Bollinger's dick after that was extremely insulting and showed a lack of taste, class, and civility. There was no debate!!! And the world does not revolve around Columbia!!!

  11. Awkward?

    This is so ridiculous. Unless that entire "Top 10" is based on how awkward WATCHING IT made YOU feel, then I don't see how anything about the way Bollinger conducted himself could get him to the top, or even so much as ON, this list.

  12. ...

    It's one thing to argue the facts against someone and that would make for vigorous debate. It's another thing however to resort to ad-hominem name-calling.

    PrezBo called Ahmadeinejad a dictator even though he was elected; then, a couple years ago when Musharaff was in town, PrezBo praised him for helping bring democracy to the region. But wait, Musharaff was a general who took power by a coup d'etat... what does it mean to be bringing democracy?

    • red  

      PrezBo said he "exhibited the traits" of a dictator, and I think the support he gave for this was quite valid.

      Being elected doesn't absolve you - the same could be said for Putin and Chavez.

      • Musharaff  

        Bollinger isn't the only one to have given Musharaff such praise- most diplomats working in the region have, at some point or another. The Pakistani general is a complicated individual.

  13. Sir  

    A poor ranking by a subpar publication... the economist would never have done such a thing.

  14. despotism  

    And I certainly would not call a country that is ruled by theocrats and that lacks a free press "strongly parliamentary."

  15. do a little research  

    Read a little, google a little. Iran may not be your burgeoning democracy, but it certainly is not the worse. Women are not as repressed as the media makes you think. Go to this website, for example:
    Yes, it has nude pictures, but it also has a lot of pictures about what Iranian life is like. It's not what you think it is.

  16. feh

    Lesse...Bollinger spends his entire career including an appearance in front of the friggin' soopreme cort trying to get more brown people into universities only to be called a racist by... brown people. AS IF anything he coulda' said to Ahmajahmadingdong would have been right by the ivory tower crew. AS IF.




  18. Iran's good to go  

    Biggest problem for the Iranian people was U.S. hawks who kept pushing for war. This gave Ahmedinejad a cover for his repression. Now that NIE has shut down the march to war, let freedom ring in Tehran!

  19. in fact  

    The irony is that Iran is probably the most liberal of all the Islamic states. It has a functional democracy which, although is shadowed by theocrats, still allows people to vote fairly for some offices. Iran allows women to hold public offices, and college attendance by females is at 65%. Women wear their scarves, but women of what other Islamic state wear hijabs as fashion statements? None.

  20. Lee = Pee


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