The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Monday, February 20, 2006

Yes, ANOTHER post on the Cheney shooting

One thing I failed to notice over the last eight days is that the right-wing pundits' fervent insistence that this isn't news can only mean one thing-- they're worried.

And although I'm fairly tired of the story myself (hunting mishaps, humjobs-- I'd rather focus on world-changing news), if this is what it takes for the press to grow a spine and start calling the White House on their evasions and inconsistencies, so be it.

The thing is, the more the press roots around on this seemingly simple story, the more troubling it becomes. Every new piece of information seems to suggest that Cheney's primary objective was to cover up the story and prevent it from ever seeing the light of day. And everything that's occurred since last weekend has been done in the name of managing the damage done after the initial attempts to keep a lid on the story failed.

Considering that the story made the respective covers of Time and Newsweek, it's going to be water-cooler talk for at least another week. And the right-wing might suffer from an acute case of Nicole Holloway Syndrome. Fox News has devoted massive amounts of airtime to the case of a missing white chick, and they might fall victim to their own petard. They've inspired other cable news channels to emulate their 'success,' which stems in large part from covering the salacious at the expense of the relevant.

Moving on to the latest bit of info (the first paragraph cites Time's article):

But the statement 'didn't say much of anything,' [Cheney aide Mary] Matalin says—not even that Cheney was the shooter. Matalin then spoke with a second aide and with Cheney's family and heard different versions of what had happened in the shooting. She decided no statement should be released amid the confusion. Matalin spoke with Cheney, and, she says, they agreed that 'a fuller accounting, with an eyewitness,' would be preferable.

Time also reports a poll showing that almost two-thirds of Americans (65%) think Cheney should have taken immediate responsibility for the shooting incident. His approval rating stands at 29%; President Bush's approval rating is 40%.

And if you haven't seen the footage of Matalin's nonsensical defense of Cheney from yesterday's Face th' Nation, it's been a hot topic on Air America and the blogs today. Crooks & Liars has it here (14-meg file).

UPDATE (2/21): The late night shows are still running with the story.

Leno: I don't want to say that Cheney drinks a lot of martinis, but he has the only reported case of liver with onions.

Ferguson: Cheney's doctor told him to stay away from alcohol, so he bought a 12-foot straw.

Stewart: I don't want to say that Cheney drinks a lot, but he once got an alcohol rub and almost broke his neck trying to lick it off.

C & L has a clip from Letterman with a satirical political ad that concludes with "Cheney: Just a Big Bowl of Bad."