It is with great regret that we are announcing the departure of Chez Pazienza from The Daily Banter. Chez has written for the site since our relaunch in early 2012 and has provided us with many great stories, original pieces, and provocative opinions. Unfortunately we discovered that Chez had plagiarized a supposedly “exclusive” Rand Paul speech, posted here yesterday.
While the alleged speech sounded like the normal word salad one would expect from someone like Rand Paul, upon closer inspection we realized that elements of it had in fact been taken directly, without attribution, from Neil Diamond’s Hello Again, the opening line of Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea, Quint’s speech from Jaws, Rand Paul’s Wikipedia page, The Beatles’ I Am the Walrus, Breaking Bad, Fatal Attraction, Jayson Blair, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling, Butters’s speech about lying on South Park, the Wikipedia page on Plagiarism, French writer Michel Houellebecq’s comments after being accused of plagiarizing lines from Wikipedia in 2010, Whitney Houston’s It’s Not Right, The Bible (Psalms 6:10), Kafka’s The Trial, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Animal House, Apollo 13, President Whitmore’s rallying speech in Independence Day, I Won’t Back Down by Tom Petty, the opening lines of The Godfather, Maya Angelou, Charles Manson, the closing line in The Great Gatsby, Miley Cyrus’s We Can’t Stop, the Avis Car Rental slogan, the Coen Brothers’ Blood Simple, Howard Beale in Network, I’ll Stand by You by The Pretenders, The Jackson 5’s I’ll Be There, I’m Your Man by Leonard Cohen, an entry called “Advice for the Falsely Accused” on Dr. Phil’s website, Look Into Your Heart by Roxette (or Miller’s Crossing, we’re not sure), Barry Goldwater’s campaign slogan, Looney Toons, and Chevy Chase’s sign-off on Saturday Night Live‘s “Weekend Update.”
In fact, it turns out the entire thing was plagiarized from start to finish. Honestly, we’re not quite sure how, or why he did it, but we’re pretty sure it involved illicit drugs.
We have already spoken to the press in reference to this issue:
The Washington TimesThe Daily Banter said Tuesday that it had independently reviewed Mr. Paul’s Mr Pazienza’s columns and op-eds and published a correction to his Sept. 20 November 5th column in which the senator writer had failed to attribute several passages.
“We expect our columnists to submit original work and to properly attribute material, and we appreciate that the senator and his staff have taken responsibility for an oversight in one column,” Times TDB Editor John Solomon Ben Cohen said.
The Daily Banter wishes Mr. Pazienza all the best for his future endeavors and hopes another outlet will forgive his journalist transgressions so he can continue to pursue his passion for writing.
And we of course apologize to you, our readers, and hope that we can re-earn your trust moving forward.
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.