Former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty was on THE DAILY SHOW the other night. The poor guy was only there to promote his obligatory pre-candidacy book, but Jon Stewart kept trying to move beyond, to ask the governor whether he found that the rhetoric had been dialed up a scosche (thank you, Bill Fisher, for that word, which I still remember from Telemedia days and never use without thinking of you!) since President Obama took office. A gentleman, and appreciative guest, Pawlenty strove to convey the fact that lefties had rhetorically whipped Dubya’s ass just as heartily. I felt for him.
Pawlenty is one of the very, very few Pubs I’d actually applaud on Inauguration Day. He seems to be thoughtful. Mr. Knee-Jerk in my head sez: “dude, remember ‘compassionate conservatism’? Bill Clinton, who can smell a trend, thought that phrase was bitchin’, and look how that turned out!” But I still can’t imagine Gov. Pawlenty would stick up his hand during a Pub debate and say he doesn’t “believe in” evolution. If I’m mistaken, then I respectfully retract all of the above.
But he walked into the lions’ den and got it right. It’s true that red-state media are pumping like they never have before – it’s time to give up the tired complaint that electronic media are biased toward the left, because they just ain’t any more! – yet Sarah Palin’s silly online “blood libel” frizzle (my guess is that she had no earthly idea what she’d just said, may still not know) proved that you still have to deal with reality.
Were Gov. Palin’s crosshairs really “surveyor’s tools”? Heck: you make the call! Do citizens who remain stung by what they view as a stolen 2000 election, all these years later (imagine what kind of Wagnerian rage the surviving Pubs are still repressing from 1960!), have any platform of legitimacy to criticize demonizers on the right? I have never heard any sitting president vilified like this one, beginning with the dishonorable feebs in that joint-session audience, which was the frickin Congress – but there I go again. It’s easy to say: the country got a black guy, so the GOP got itself one too. When the country’s black guy started to look vulnerable, the Pubs felt they could safely get rid of theirs. But that’s just me. I read George W. Bush’s book DECISION POINTS. It’s self-aggrandizing, one-sided (he was “blindsided” three or four times by lesser souls who worked for him), but you have to hand him this. He viewed AIDS in Africa as the enemy it is. When Kanye West insulted him by saying he didn’t care about black people, Bush was right to take umbrage. Some of his advisors may well have advised, “Katrina affected only Democrat voters, and if they leave, Louisiana becomes a red state,” but that’s not what is in the heart of a guy who committed millions to sub-Saharan Africa.
Yes, it’s hot in here. I wish it weren’t. But it is.