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Howard Hughes and Coward Shoes

Reported by Chrish - March 31, 2005

When I was a child my two grandmothers were visiting in the backyard, sipping sherry and having a lively conversation. When we joined them my mom asked what they were talking about. One nana said "Howard Hughes" and the other said "Coward Shoes."
This was brought to mind by two guests on the Big Story yesterday, 3/29, Democrat strategist Hank Scheinkopf and Republican strategist Kellyanne Conway.

Gibson led the segment with a clip of Bush touting the spread of freedom and democracy and asked "Is the president continuing on the right track?"

To Hank he said "Things are a little rocky in Iraq, but does the president get credit?"

Hank replied "They're a lot more than a little rocky, number one, number two there's no end in sight, and number three a lot of Americans, blue collar people, are watching their sons and daughters come home in body bags. Not that good. Nice PR; it doesn't tell the story."

"Kellyanne?" Comment: she is a very fast talker and I'm not going to even try to capture everything she said.

"It's still amazing to me that we can still be focusing on such negative aspects of Iraq, and such spin, when hank knows that one of the tremendous (cohorts?) that lost for the Democratic party in 2004 was the blue-collar workers." She goes on to say that blue-collar workers are big on security and they believe that begins with allowing democracy to flourish in the middle east.

Comment: I would wager that in election 2004 most blue-collar workers who voted for Bush did so on homophobic and good-ol-boy grounds, not foreign policy, unless of course you count wanting to kick some middle-east ass.

She went on to praise the fact that there are 275 elected people in Iraq, 80 of them women, but didn't mention that they are at an impasse and 2 months after the elections have not fulfilled their first goal of selecting a parliamentary speaker.

Hank accused her of spin, and when she protested by repeating the numerical facts he said "How many Americans have paid the supreme price,...for a policy that appears to have been wrong while our economy is shifting dramatically, providing less food on the table, more people at the bottom of the economic ladder. Those are facts."

Kellyanne said those are facts that have nothing to do with this segment and have nothing to do with last year's election results (also off topic, dear) and then went on a verbal bullet-train. She brought the subject back to Iraq "once you've tasted freedom you don't go back to the hemlock of anarchy."

Gibson intervened at this point, "resetting the question" and asked if Hank and Democrats believe it is good policy for the US to be accomodationist to people like the previous Iraq regime, and we should never intervene, and we shouldn't do anything about Saudi Arabia and Egypt and every place else where there's the same sort of problem?

Hank replied, first of all we don't have troop commitments in all those places, second, there's no end in sight, and third Democrats I may remind you other Democrats who helped other Americans pay the supreme price for freedom including FDR, Harry Truman and others who were extraordinary whether we liked what they did or not. That's not the issue. The issue is where does this end and when do we talk about the economy? We are now paying more than $3 for gas, with no end in sight and no relief for working people who really need it. Real middle-income money is declining on a quarterly basis; those are facts.

Gibson asked Kellyanne if Bush could do something about gas prices, is it Bush's fault? Kellyanne replied "Of course it's not Bush's fault. Every time the sun rose and set we were supposed to write a thank you postcard to Bill Clinton, but every time something's bad we're supposed to blame GWBush." She said one thing Bush has done is try to get Congress to agree to drill in ANWR to make America more "self-dependent" on America and not so much on Saudi Arabia and others who may not like democracy and freedom.

Gibson said "Hank, it is a point; most environmentalists tend to be Democrats. They're the ones who don't want to build any refineries in this country which is the reason we don't have enough gas which is part of the reason the price is so high." If Dems wanted to they could have done something.

Hank said that the Democrats have not had control of the House or Senate for the most part of a decade. Kellyanne said there's a reason why Dems have not been in charge, and there's a reason GW won a second term. ( help prevent further "wins" here )

Kelly continued to speed-talk about the wonders of democracy and freedom and burka-ripping in Iraq, Hank demanded again to know when it's going to end so that we can get back to repairing the economy that desperately needs it.

Comment: In a twisted way it was fair and balanced, with them both hitting their talking points and staying on topic, but it was confusing and uninformative. Fox needed some filler between Schiavo segments, I guess.

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