Friday, May 28, 2004

Ann and Bill

There are blogs and websites devoted to debunking the screeching of Ann Coulter. Frankly, I can’t bear to watch her. First, she’s so full of shit that I’m surprised she hasn’t got brown eyes. Second, if I wanted to listen to to spittle-flecked rants, I’d go down to the corner of Biscayne Boulevard and NE 15th Street and watch the guy who yells at the passing traffic. But my friend Brian apparently has a higher tolerance (after all, he spent twenty years as an EMT so I guess he has a strong control on his barf reflex) and he sent me this note:

Uh Oh

No, not me, but those words are undoubtedly being uttered around one presidential campaign tonight. I was just channel surfing and stumbled across “The O’Reilly Factor” where Bill was hammering…a bit gently, but still hammering…his guest’s ascertains. He referred to them at various times as “strident,” “an extremist,” and my personal favorite, “wrong, wrong, and wrong again.” The guest? Ann Coulter.

To her claims that the war is going “magnificently,” Reilly gave his famous “Oh, pa leeez!” look and said “Our FOX correspondents in Baghdad are afraid to leave their hotel.” When she claimed that WMD’s had in fact been found…well, if not actual weapons, at least research facilities and documentation…Reilly fired back with “Well, labs and papers aren’t what Powell went to the U.N. with,” to which she could only sputter “of course he’s the guy liberals like best,” as though it was Colin Powell’s idea to go to war, and the lack of proof of his claims shows that somehow the whole Iraqi thing was some sort of liberal conspiracy.

But I guess my favorite part came when she defended Rush Limbaugh’s “Oh, it was only hazing” comments about the Abu Ghraib disaster. First she tried to claim he didn’t say it, then said it was “one minute out of a three hour show,” to which O’Reilly responded with some anger that he competes against Rush with his own radio show, is intimately aware of everything he says, and it was a lot more then a passing comment…it was the theme of that day’s show. Ann got really bent at that point, doing the famous hair-flipping thing, and O’Reilly really got angry, saying he was in that business, she wasn’t, and she was in no position to dismiss his knowledge of the competition with a wave of her hand. I thought she was either going to cry or slap him when he said as an author she appealed “to a niche market” and could widen her appeal if she wasn’t so “strident and closed minded.”

So…can we expect to see O’Reilly endorsing Kerry? Hardly, but it’s more evidence of his supporters distancing themselves from the Boy Wonder. Throw in the lukewarm defense of Rumsfeld by a mere handful of the Republican majority, the substitution of “support the troops” for any talk of “support the president” when referring to the war, the lack of pundits touting his “accomplishments,” and I think the handwriting, no matter how dimly, is starting to appear on the wall. Johnson knew it was over when he lost Cronkite over Tet and said as much. I doubt Dubya is perceptive enough to note what’s happened, but that doesn’t matter. It’s happening whether he and his arrogant crew know it or not.