Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Senator Thomas Dies, JFK Plot, TB Update, And Debate Discussion (Monday's Second Hour)

Hi everyone. We begin the hour with some BREAKING NEWS, and when I saw the graphic I thought it was just going to be about William Jefferson again. But no, this is actual BREAKING NEWS. It seems Republican Senator Craig Thomas of Wyoming has died of leukemia at the age of 74. So now what? Joe Johns is here live to explain. The Democratic governor of Wyoming will pick the new senator, but he/she will be chosen from a group of three people offered up by the Republican party. So, yeah, it's going to be a Republican. That's fair, I suppose. After this news we move on to a John King piece about how the Republican candidates are shaking in their boots about a possible Fred Thompson run. Duh-duh! (BTW, that will never get old.)

Next up, have you forgotten to be afraid lately? Shame on you. Luckily our government is kind enough to give us periodic reminders. In a Jeanne Meserve piece we learn of a terrorist plot against JFK airport in New York that according to one US attorney, would cause "unthinkable" devastation. Okay, so basically the charge is that the guys wanted to cause a big pipeline fire. Thing is, when that attorney said "unthinkable" (and why are we listening to an attorney about the devastation that can be caused to pipelines?), boy was she right. Well, I guess you could think it, it's just that according to experts you couldn't really do it. There's a whole bunch of techinical stuff that doesn't add up here. However, we're told , "investigators say the plotters were sophisticated enough to use Google Earth to pinpoint attack locations and get away routes." They used Google Earth? These guys were diabolical masterminds! Okay, like with the Fort Dix plot, I'm not saying there was no reason for alarm, but c'mon. The fearmongering is getting really old. Thank you 360, for not pounding us with this Fox News-style. Moving on to a David Mattingly piece on TB guy Andrew Speaker. He's still detained in Denver and, well, not much has changed.

Transitioning now to some more indepth debate coverage, where we're shown edited segments of the candidate's answers. I won't be blogging that part, but I'll hit on the discussion with Arianna Huffington and Mike Murphy after each section. First up: the war and terrorism. Anderson asks Arianna if she was surprised that Clinton said we're safer now. Arianna was of course very surprised and points out that we are so totally not safer. Than Anderson notes that Clinton said there's not much difference between the candidates on Iraq. Mike thinks she's trying to avoid making the war a wedge issue. He calls Clinton and Biden the "adults" on the foreign policy issues. Anderson wants to know why Obama is not an adult, and, frankly, I do too. Mikes says he doesn't have a bad vote and then states that he likes Clinton because she doesn't have a "purest loony left position." Oh, that's nice. Way to stay classy there, Mike. Arianna is also ticked off by that line and points out that wanting to bring the troops home is supported by Republicans too. So there!

Next topic: immigration. Anderson brings up how they were asked about making english the official language and wonders if their answers might hurt them. I'm sorry, but that is the stupidest question ever. Not Anderson's; the one in the debate. Mike thinks their stances on the issue will hurt them. Do we not have bigger problems to worry about? Anderson asks if there's passion on the democratic side on the immigration issue like there is on the republican side. Arianna says yes, but I don't know. It probably depends on where you live. Anyway, then Arianna and Mike go back and forth about left wing positions. Whatever.

Third topic: gays in the military. Anderson asks if democrats really want gays in the military to be a front and center issue. Arianna says they're not going to make it front and center, which leads Anderson to point out the obvious: what if the republicans make it front and center? But Arianna must be hanging out with George Lakoff because she's all about framing and thinks the democrats are going to do a good job reframing all the issues. BTW, I once ate a meal with Lakoff and didn't even know it was him until after he left. Strange, but true. Anyway, Mike thinks framing is just semantics and he echos his own talking points/framing that the democrats are moving to the left. Sigh.

The final clip: Iran. Anderson wonders if the whole 'democrats are weak on terror' meme will hold this time. Arianna says no because only Kucinich even took retaliation off the table and he's got no shot anyway. Okay, that last part was all me. Mike then starts talking about how democrats always underfund the military. However, Anderson slaps that down by pointing out that Gore wanted a bigger military before Bush did. Ooh. High-five, Anderson! When all the discussion is over, Erica has one last piece of celebration for Mr. Cooper's birthday. We're shown the cops from "Fort Apache" in New Orleans and they wish him a happy birthday, stating that they won't sing lest they ruin his ratings. Aw, now that was nice. And that'll do it...wait! After Anderson says bye to us the cops are back. And they're singing this time! Bwah! "If that don't destroy your ratings, nothing will," says one cop after they've finished. I love how these tough New Orleans cops are so concerned about ratings. Okay, now we're really done.


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