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An Exercise of Unmitigated Gall

I have this suspicion, that those regular readers of my weblog (maybe WatchBlog, too), worry I have an unhealthy obsession with Fox News Channel. Yes, I am well versed in their vast catalog of documented partisan machinations, and yes, I purchased the Outfoxed DVD documentary, and have subsequently shared it with my circle of politically engaged friends. However, the incidents of outrage that I’ve personally viewed, investigated and then wrote about are actually the result of nominal periods spent watching TV - a length dependent on my threshold for Fox’s brazen partisan manipulation of the news.

Days before the Republican Convention began, I expressed to American Pundit (WB Blue Column Editor) my intention and dogged determination to post as many relevant and closely scrutinized commentaries, assuming I would equal the stretch I spent watching the Dems in Boston. However, upon this very moment, consider me humbled – for I failed miserably.

Oh, it started off well on Sunday, considering that person a genius that suggested none other than Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton to make the Dem’s case, on the Sunday chat show rounds. And, DNC’s Terry McCauliffe had already managed to put the opposition to shame, announcing an impressive and disparate group of party leaders, to articulate and rebut as members of the ‘rapid response team’ deployed to New York, dubbed - America Can Do Better! However, by opening day Monday, the litany of lies by the Republican Lyin’ Liars had already been launched in earnest.

The shadowy figure known as the Wizard of RoveVision, decided to brave the harsh daylight and sit for a rare interview with Tom Brokaw on MSNBC. The NBC anchorman actually managed to confront King Karl with the previously ignored and downward trending issues polling data, conspicuously absent from CNN’s Wolf Blitzer’s teleprompter. The 39% to 50% percent ‘Right Track/Wrong Track’ figure (unlike the 3% Bush lead in the L.A. Times poll) goes into the Republican’s questionable polling method File of Plausible Denial. However, just as Chief Strategist Matthew Dowd has claimed previously (unchallenged by Fox’s Brit Hume), Rove had a prepared (yet, unsubstantiated) comeback – although I could only find information to the contrary.

If you’re the Bush/Cheney campaign, and you are expecting questions from a MSNBC host about the Vice-President’s recent remarks on the gay lifestyle, then the Gay Marriage issue, and of course, Halliburton – which of the Cheney daughters would express the most effective and ideal viewpoint of the Second Family? Duh, silly me! Did I mention Mary Cheney presently resides at an undisclosed location, and therefore, unavailable for press interviews? (Also, in my role as WB spokesman for the gay/lesbian community, Mary Cheney’s conspicuous absence from the gathering of the Bush/Cheney families on stage, at the Convention’s close, was more injurious than anything the social Conservatives had written into the Party’s platform).

Now having documented proof of Fox New Channel’s Republican Convention bias, the fact that my primary source for coverage was The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, makes it the WatchBlog Blue Column recommended media outlet for ‘fair and biased’. Judging from the week’s incredulous level of biting satire unleashed against the Republicans, such hypocrisy and deceit on display at Madison Square Garden is no longer a laughing matter for Stewart & Co. For example, a segment called George Bush: Words Speak Louder than Action, makes Hardball’s Chris Matthews’ dress down of John O’Neill seem like a Reader's Digest interview. Ironically, Matthews is the newest member of the Right’s Liberal Bias Black List, having also sent Michelle Milkin bawling to Rush Limbaugh. Which makes the fact that the Daily Show segment I just linked to, was followed on air by an interview with White House Communications Director Dan Bartlett, all the more surreal.

I have so far, seen only snippets of Zell Miller’s Keynote Address on Wednesday, yet have read the transcript in its entirety. I have seen the entire broadcasts of his subsequent interviews with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, and then the bizarre confrontation with Chris Matthews in images and words. After gauging the harshness of Miller’s attacks, my very first impression was how clever the bait n’ switch cooked up by the boys at RoveVision! As scripted, an unexpectedly ‘kinder and gentler’ Dick Cheney garners extra copy, while leaving the hate and bile to the pliable and oblivious Dem turncoat, implanted with a ‘disassociation chip’, just for good measure.

Obviously buoyed by the self-diluted notion of momentum and the L.A. Times Poll thru the Conservative echo chamber buzz, the Bush camp and the RNC knew damn well the contents of Miller’s speech – and, pulled the trigger on another ‘slam dunk’, anyway. As for the fallout to Zell’s Rebel Yell, Digby at Hullabaloo accurately deconstructs what obviously was the contingency plan, in the event Miller’s diatribe backfired.

The title of this entry, is a direct quote from Daily Show correspondent Steven Colbert, aptly describing what we just witnessed in New York by the Republicans. It is now late Saturday evening, and two current polls reflect a sizable bounce for George W. Bush, post-convention. Like Kerry’s previous national polling bounce, I expect Bush’s lead to dissipate also, and by the first debate we’ll be back within the margin of error. So, as the strident Democrat that I’m known for in these parts, I confess, I am not scared, only saddened and disappointed. And, no doubt, I expect derisive responses from my following personal declaration.

Like me, I’ve read other like-minded bloggers considering serious life altering options, if George W. Bush is re-elected.

Britain’s Prime Minister Tony Blair has a 73% percent disapproval rating, an absolute assurance his term will end upon his eventual call for national elections. Afghanistan is no more a burgeoning democracy, than the lie that the new Iraqis government and Coalition forces have complete and total control of Iraq. National polls show that Americans have finally awoken to the incompetence of this administration on ‘bread and butter’ issues like jobs and economy. And, they have finally realized that nearly 1000 dead soldiers and 16,000+ injured are the end result of being duped. They clung to the many ‘Revisionist Rationalizations’ massaged and offered up by this White House, while still being dogged by the growing dread of complicity, in that their still fresh entitlement to revenge was also not deterred by ‘questionable or bad intelligence’.

George W. Bush has picked the tune, it’s called ‘Security’, and so far a growing number of American voters are joining John Kerry on the dance floor, as hoped. ‘Keep America Safe’, is another buzz phrase, when the NASCAR voters speak ignorantly in praise of this President. The other member of the Republican Convention’s list of the ‘Conspicuously Absent’ was Homeland Security Secretary, Tom Ridge. His bungling and burgeoning bureaucracy has become the laughing stock of Washington, and thus an embarrassment to the White House. When a growing number of Americans think terrorist warnings are politically motivated (34%), knowing that an equal number or higher consider the color-coded Terrorist Warning system a joke, is of no comfort.

How can Bush promise to keep this country safe, with porous borders, unchecked imported shipping containers, non-secured chemical and nuclear plant sites and needed funding being diverted to Iraq? Why wasn’t Tom Ridge assuring us of the administration’s progress on these matters, as the more obvious choice for the Convention’s Keynote Address?

If George W. Bush is re-elected in November, my plan is to leave this country, in ten years time, if not sooner.

There is one bit of information I learned a few years ago that is a constant when I think about this country, it’s politics and it’s future. I learned that only 7% percent of all Americans actually own a valid U.S. passport (me included). And, on average in any given year, only 10% percent of that group actually uses it to travel abroad.

To me, this explains how a possible majority prefers a swaggering, cowboy arrogance, dismissive of the ramifications of world isolation and severed ties to key allies, while ignoring pragmatic and proven diplomatic alternatives from those who have seen actual military conflict, in turn, denounced as weak and unpatriotic.

It also explains how a possible majority that is so isolated, segregated, intolerant and increasingly uneducated, can be so removed from, indifferent to, and arrogantly uninformed about issues they claim are so very important. Thus, they succumb to a deceitful campaign by those that have obviously failed them, who deploy effective slander of their opponent, while playing on the very real fears their failed policies have helped create.

So, as an educated, well informed, engaged, concerned citizen, of what I believe has, can be and should be a model of a representative democracy thru accountability, George Bush’s America is unacceptable.

Posted by Bert M. Caradine at September 6, 2004 7:16 PM