Gelf Magazine - Looking over the overlooked

Books | Politics

November 17, 2009

The Existential Martin Eisenstadt

Harding Institute senior fellow and GOP attack dog fights Liberal media claims that he’s not real.

David Goldenberg

Martin Eisenstadt has an image problem. Despite his high-profile involvement in the last presidential election as a Republican pundit and spokesman, some on the Left claim that Eisenstadt, who is chair of the Eisenstadt Group and a senior fellow at the Harding Institute for Freedom and Democracy, is overstating his influence. Indeed, a few have even cast aspersions that he exists at all, claiming that his outsized persona is the creation of two obscure filmmakers.

As it turns out, though, Eisenstadt is the first victim of a truly modern smear campaign. Lefties who didn’t like what he had to say on the campaign trail—including, most notably, William K. Wolfrum—didn’t just go online to call him a dirtbag, they also claimed that he was a hoax. The joke went viral; it’s now almost impossible to find a mention of Eisenstadt online without the word “hoax” nearby. (Inadvertently, Gelf has been also complicit in this slander. Last year, we, too, ran a piece questioning Eisenstadt’s bona fides after he claimed to be the source of the leak about Sarah Palin’s poor African geography skills.)

Courtesy The Eisenstadt Group
"Obama can't even pull off naming his puppy."

Courtesy The Eisenstadt Group

As you can imagine, this is all rather distressing for a man whose job is based on his reputation. Indeed, he laments, it’s that much harder to get booked on The Situation Room. So in an effort to reclaim his good name (and get back in Wolf’s good graces), Eisenstadt penned his memoirs, titled appropriately I Am Martin Eisenstadt: One Man's (Wildly Inappropriate) Adventures with the Last Republicans.

In the following interview, which was conducted over email and has been edited for clarity, Eisenstadt tells Gelf about the controversy surrounding his existence, how he’d go about exploiting Obama’s biggest weakness, and how to make a buck off of our newfound socialism.

Gelf Magazine: How is it that you've been involved in so many pivotal moments in modern Republican party history?

Marting Eisenstadt: Prayer and good deeds.

Gelf Magazine: Besides releasing this book, what are some other ways you are combating the smear campaign that claims you don't exist?

Marting Eisenstadt: I speak for free in Brooklyn and leave my DNA at crime scenes.

Gelf Magazine: How has Washington changed with the new administration?

Marting Eisenstadt: You don't see as many flag lapel pins around which is a shame as I own stock in the Chinese company that manufactures them. On the other hand, having a Democrat in the White House doesn't need to be the worst thing, especially if he's only a one-termer.
With Obama as commander-in-chief, even the lefties are coming around to supporting war in faraway lands. Can you imagine if Bush or McCain were now deciding to escalate war in Afghanistan? What an outcry there would be. They would say it was for the oil or the pipeline or the opium or to test our weapons and make the military-industrial complex even richer. Under Obama, this same latte-sipping, Volvo-driving crowd is more inclined to trust the government when it bails out banks or escalates wars since it is being led by a somewhat black, somewhat Muslim person (even if he was handpicked by the Bilderbergs, as any freedom-loving teabagger can tell you). Case in point: just last week, Exxon beat out Russian and Chinese consortia for the contract to develop Iraq's largest oil field, and I didn't hear a peep of complaint from anyone. Great things can be accomplished when we're united.

Gelf Magazine: Are the Republican think tanks again the government-in-waiting?

Martin Eisenstadt: Make no mistake: Republican think tanks are more valuable than ever. We're still in Iraq and about to escalate Afghanistan. And who understands war better than us? Plus, accredited government contractors like the Harding Institute are perfectly situated to get in on Obama's plans to shake up health care and redistribute the wealth. As a firm proponent of capitalism, I see no shame in making a buck, even if it trickles down from socialist policies. What's more American than thinking out of the box and turning adversity into profit?

Gelf Magazine: Given your successful work on both the Willie Horton and Swift Boat ad campaigns, I’d love to hear what you think Obama’s biggest weakness is and what image or metaphor you would use to exploit it (given that the whole Bill Ayers thing didn’t work as well as you thought it would).

Martin Eisenstadt: Slogans: "He's a politician just like everyone else. Stop being such a sucker!" and/or "Community organizers can't be trusted."
His biggest weakness is his own slogan "Yes we can." He can't even pull off naming his puppy. This last fact may not be completely true but that's not really important. It sounds right, which is all that matters when getting a rumor to stick.

Gelf Magazine: Have you heard from Wolfrum since your book was published? What is he up to?

Martin Eisenstadt: All the time. He's our biggest fan. The left and right need each other like Disney needs Nickelodeon. What's he up to? Loving trannies and spreading left wing propaganda.

Gelf Magazine: What’s the best network for a pundit to appear on and why?

Martin Eisenstadt: MSNBC or FOX. CNN cares too much about the facts.

Eisenstadt responds to a slanderous BBC documentary.

Gelf Magazine: Since apologies are the best way to reframe the debate in Washington, what are you thinking about apologizing for next?

Martin Eisenstadt: As I am the one who started the rumor that the Democratic health care bill would set up death panels, I would apologize not for the death panel rumor but for calling Harry Reid "untrustworthy" which everyone knows to be true anyway.

Gelf Magazine: Given that you’ve spent time with the Somalian pirates, how should the US approach them from a foreign policy perspective?

Martin Eisenstadt: We should be opening casinos there. If you don't agree, I suggest you check out my interview with Iraqi TV where I explain how casinos turn enemies into friends while promoting freedom, democracy and capitalism.

Gelf Magazine: Joe the Plumber. Is he still relevant?

Martin Eisenstadt: Unfortunately, he missed his opportunity to appear on The Bachelor. When it comes to Hollywood, you can't dither. You have to strike when you're hot. Hollywood has a very short memory span. May have something to do with the lax marijuana laws out there. But maybe Joe could still be relevant as a war correspondent. The same way he went to Ashkelon to cover the Gaza war, maybe one of the networks could send him to San Diego to cover the Mexican drug battles.

David Goldenberg

David Goldenberg is the co-founder and editor of Gelf, and the host of Geeking Out, Gelf's monthly science speaking series.

Post a comment

Comment Rules

The following HTML is allowed in comments:
Bold: <b>Text</b>
Italic: <i>Text</i>
<a href="URL">Text</a>


Article by David Goldenberg

David Goldenberg is the co-founder and editor of Gelf, and the host of Geeking Out, Gelf's monthly science speaking series.

Learn more about this author


Hate to miss out? Enter your email for occasional Gelf news flashes.


Gelf t-shirt

The picture is on the front of the shirt, the words are on the back. You can be in between.