The Daily Caller’s GINORMOUS List Grading College Commencement Speakers
Spring is in the air and college commencement season is upon us.
This year’s bumper crop of college students is about to experience a lifetime of debt repayment and all the benefits of the Obama economy, which, according to a recent survey, has produced real jobs for 17 percent of all college grads thus far. (RELATED: Over 80 Percent Of All Graduating Seniors Don’t Have Jobs Waiting For Them)
In this impressively comprehensive list, The Daily Caller very honestly grades a slew of celebrities who will speak (or, in a few cases, have already spoken) at various commencement ceremonies around the country in 2014.
President Barack Obama is slated to give the 2014 baccalaureate address at the University of California at Irvine. On the one hand, it’s the president. On the other hand, security will be a royal mess and Obama can’t run for anything now, so what can he say that will be memorable? What has he ever said that is memorable? B.
Jill Biden, the spouse of Vice President Joe Biden will speak during the commencement at Villanova University. Democrat John Nance Garner of Texas once described the vice presidency as “not worth a bucket of warm piss.” What, then, is it worth to listen to the vice president’s spouse at your graduation ceremony? F.
Fareed Zakaria is the scheduled speaker at Sarah Lawrence College, America’s most expensive college. Sarah Lawrence is filled with chain-smoking hipster waifs who dress weird, love theater and listen to indie music so obscure no one else has ever heard it. Zakaria is a noted plagiarist and self-proclaimed foreign policy expert. It should be a train wreck. TheDC hopes Zakaria brazenly opens his speech by saying, “Four score and seven years ago…” F.
Susan Wojcicki, the CEO of YouTube, will give the commencement speech at Johns Hopkins University. TheDC would give Wojcicki an A+ if she brings video clips of cats doing crazy things and various skateboard disasters. However, she will probably just talk, so: D.
Rap magnate Sean Combs was the keynote speaker at Howard University. Before Combs was Puff Daddy, or P. Diddy or just Diddy, he was a business major at Howard. He dropped out in 1989 and worked his way up through the management side of the recording industry, starting as a lowly intern. Combs is now worth an estimated $700 million. A.
Jon Favreau, a former speechwriting director for President Obama, will speak at his alma mater, the College of the Holy Cross. Since Obama has never once said anything remotely memorable, Favreau is, of course, most famous for being photographed while grabbing the right boob of a life-size cardboard cutout of Hillary Clinton while some other dude thrusts a beer bottle up her right nostril. Holy Cross is supposed to be a serious Catholic school, and its name is Holy Cross. F.
Tory Burch is a great American entrepreneur. She is a fashion designer who started a fashion label named after herself. It boasts flagship stores in a handful of glitzy cities and shelf space in every classy department store. Burch will give the commencement speech at Babson College, a small school in Massachusetts that specializes in all things business. It’s an excellent match. A.San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers will speak to the graduates of The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. The five-time Pro Bowler may be up and down as an NFL quarterback, but he’s got some serious and consistent Catholic chops. Not only did he convert to Catholicism, but he has seven children. Take note, Holy Cross officials, so you don’t embarrass yourselves again next year. This is how it’s done. A-.
Yes, DePauw University baccalaureate speaker Kal Penn was a mid-level flunky in the Obama administration. And yes, he appeared in 2009 with awful comedian George Lopez at the embarrassingly-named “We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial.” However, as an actor, Penn has also appeared in some great cult classics. Obviously, there’s the legendary stoner trilogy “Harold & Kumar.” There’s also “National Lampoon’s Van Wilder” and “Malibu’s Most Wanted.” TheDC would give Penn an A+ if he shows up stoned out of his gourd with belly bombers for everybody. He won’t, though, so: B.
George Washington University, America’s dirtiest, rottenest, cheatingest, lyingest college, boasts not one but two cheating scandals by administrators determined to make the school look better than it actually is. Maybe that’s why the school’s commencement speaker this year is José Andrés, some chef who has several restaurants in the DC area. Bon appétit, GW grads! F.
A couple of Slate writers, David Plotz and Hanna Rosin, will co-deliver a joint commencement address at Ripon College in Wisconsin. Attention, Ripon bureaucrats: Sarah Hofmann and Patrick Howley at TheDC are wittier, better-dressed and await your call. D-.
Bizarro leftist environmental advocate and former Obama administration official Van Jones, whose name appeared on a 2004 petition from 911Truth.org that suggested the Bush Administration “may indeed have deliberately allowed 9/11 to happen,” will speak to the graduates of Pitzer College, a Southern California school with a large contingent of annoying trustafarian hippies. D+.
Is there a greater American than Joe Torre? The Brooklyn-born baseball legend is a nine-time Major League baseball all-star who later managed the New York Yankees to the post-season all 12 seasons he was there and won the World Series four times. Torre will speak during commencement activities at the University of Hartford. A+.
Rich dude Bill Gates and his rich wife Melinda Gates will apparently speak together during the commencement activities at Stanford University. So, it’s a billionaire who started one of America’s iconic companies (even if it hasn’t done squat lately) and the person who did nothing but marry him. C-.
First Lady Michelle Obama spoke at Dillard University, a private, historically black liberal arts college in New Orleans. Security was probably a hassle. Lettuce and skim milk were possibly served. No word yet on how many jumping jacks and abdominal crunches were required. C-.
Brandeis University, one of America’s foremost lairs of leftism, chose to take back an honorary degree it was going to bestow during its commencement ceremonies on Ayaan Hirsi Ali, one of the planet’s greatest and bravest campaigners for women’s rights and a very vocal critic of Islam. TheDC cares not who will speak at the school. You stay classy, Brandeis. F.
Rutgers University, the flagship campus of the Armpit of America, was recently embarrassed after some leftists protested and forced former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to withdraw from its 2014 commencement ceremony. TheDC doesn’t care which nobody will now speak at Rutgers, either. F.
Billionaire Michael Bloomberg, the last remotely decent mayor of New York City, will speak at Harvard University. (He spoke at Stanford last year.) Obviously, all self-respecting Harvard grads will bring 1,024-oz. Big Gulps and guzzle them as they accept their diplomas. D+.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi will belch forth during commencement ceremonies at two very liberal schools: Bard College and the University of California, Berkeley. Way to venture out of your comfort zone, Nancy. C-.
Miami University in Ohio will host Oscar-winning actor, producer, and director Forest Whitaker for its commencement festivities this year. On the one hand, Whittaker appeared in great flicks such as “Platoon,” “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” and “The Last King of Scotland.” On the other hand, he also showed up in bile including “Mr. Holland’s Opus” and “Battlefield Earth.” C+.
Iona College is a smallish Catholic school in suburban Westchester County, N.Y. affiliated with the Congregation of Christian Brothers. Iona’s commencement speaker this year is Timothy Dolan, Cardinal Archbishop of New York. It’s obviously a match made in heaven. A.
Mount Ida College is a small, completely obscure private school in the suburbs of Boston. The school’s commencement speaker, Joseph P. Kennedy III, is an obscure member of the Kennedy clan who currently represents Massachusetts’s 4th congressional district in the House of Representatives. C.
George Stephanopoulos is either deeply embedded in the Federal Witness Protection or chief political correspondent for ABC News and co-anchor of the station’s “Good Morning America” program—possibly both. The former Clinton White House lackey spoke to graduating seniors at the commencement ceremonies of Franklin & Marshall College in Pennsylvania. D.
Chris Christie, the round mound of governor of New Jersey will be forever stained by the notorious Bridgegate scandal that forced two of his top aides to resign. He will be the featured commencement speaker at Rowan University in the endless suburbs of The Garden State. TheDC just hopes Christie doesn’t close down three lanes of traffic for the festivities. C-.
Chris Matthews already got a thrill up his leg when he gave the commencement address at The Ohio State University. Matthews will get another thrill up his leg when speaks to graduates at the University of Rochester later this month. However, TheDC strongly suspects that no students got or will get any thrills up their legs during the experience. D+.
At High Point University, a Methodist-affiliated liberal arts school in North Carolina, graduating seniors got to hear the always affable Colin Powell, a retired four-star general who served as Secretary of State under George W. Bush. A-.
Janet Napolitano, former Secretary of the uncomfortably-named Department of Homeland Security, will give the commencement address at Northeastern University in Boston. She is currently the president of the University of California system, but none of those schools wanted her, apparently. D-.
Ben Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who has strongly criticized Obamacare, spoke to grads at Regent University, a definitively Christian school in Virginia. Last year, some nobody replaced Carson at the medical school at Johns Hopkins after a bunch of leftists protested his appearance there and he graciously stepped aside. B+.