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


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Gotcha! the Home Game

It's always tough to know where to begin when I get back to posting after an absence. Jaw-dropping stories are never in short supply these days-- sort of an embarrassment of blogging riches, you could say. Only I'd be much happier without so many things to speak out against.

The pre-primary presidential campaigns continue to play out as the last two elections did, but six months earlier than usual. The MSM seems to have anointed Hillary the candidate with the most perceived "electability," although my inner cynic suggests that many of today's blow-dried pundits and their would-be heirs are already planning on how to wrangle a multi-million dollar contract out of their fantasy "gotcha moment."

One recent attempt aimed at Hillary Clinton came from Tim Russert at a Democratic debate. Not only was El Potato continuing the unfortunate trend of media personality as self-anointed arbiter of public discourse, but in the best "mote in another's eye" tradition he both laments the superficiality of election coverage and the disaster it's brought about even as he continues to be completely superficial-- and conveniently ignore his own role in bringing down Al Gore.

Another gotcha moment starred Dennis Kucinich and CBS reporter Hannah Storm on the issue of Iran:

Storm: "So you'd meet person to person, backdoor the State Department?"

Kucinich: "[T]here is no one I wouldn't meet with to create more security for our nation and peace in the world."

'Backdoor' the State Department? Storm is speaking of a hypothetical POTUS Kucinich here, so what the hell is that supposed to even mean? Storm wasn't finished there, though. Next up was "screw the issues-- let's dish!"

Storm: "You have a core group of supporters for your political views, but a lot of people [are] talking about your wife and the fact that she's over three decades younger and she's statuesque and beautiful and has a pierced tongue. What do you make of the attention on her?"

And it actually gets more ridiculous from there as Storm asks probing questions like "would you remove it if you became first lady," and "can we see it?"

More recently, Kucinich is taking hits from the NYT and WaPo over impeachment proceedings against Dick Cheney. I don't even want to get started on how the press has devolved since the days of Watergate in this regard. Seeing top national papers dismiss criminal acts in the White House that dwarf Nixon's isn't getting any less scary.

But for once, a conservative candidate faced at least something like a gotcha moment. Ron Paul, who pointed out that Iraq has just become the deadliest year for American troops yet, was confronted with the nonsensical rejoinder "but October casualties actually decreased." Paul's response, to the effect that "one month does not a year make," was probably more tempered and gentle a rebuke than I would've managed in the face of such stupidity. (Sorry, I can't seem to find the link to that story.)