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reality check
January 21, 2005 10:25 AM   Subscribe

A candid exchange on Fox New about yesterday's inauguration's pomp and splendor between Judy Bachrach from Vanity Fair and Brigitte Quinn from Fox. (apologies for the link, it was the only one I could find)
posted by threehundredandsixty (89 comments total)

 
this is a great clip. why do you need to aplogize for the link?
posted by tsarfan at 10:31 AM on January 21, 2005


Yeah, that's a great site. The guy who runs it is awesome. :)
posted by owillis at 10:33 AM on January 21, 2005


I would guess he's apologizing because of this.
posted by Bezbozhnik at 10:36 AM on January 21, 2005


i had a little trouble getting the clip to load, initially, that's all!
posted by threehundredandsixty at 10:36 AM on January 21, 2005


I can't watch it on my computer. What was said?
posted by kyrademon at 10:38 AM on January 21, 2005


Much as I despite Fox News, the anchor's response hardly seems like a "meltdown" to me. And Judy Bachrach's comparison with FDR's inauguration isn't particularly compelling. Surely a much better point to make is that the city of Washington had to divert $12M from their security budget?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 10:38 AM on January 21, 2005


Wow. Simply amazing that something like that actually aired from Fox News. I loved it.
posted by Qubit at 10:39 AM on January 21, 2005


The problem (a problem?) with modern media coverage is that its 24-hour a day coverage requires so much editorializing and commenting that any actual reporting gets buried in the deluge.
IMHO, editorializing should be left to guests and the reporters and newscasters need to stay focused on facts - but I'm hopelessly naive and old-fashioned!
Ratings and agendas are almost all that modern 'news' channels care about.
posted by lirio at 10:41 AM on January 21, 2005


Yeah, that's a great site. The guy who runs it is awesome. :)

He sure is! ;)
posted by jperkins at 10:43 AM on January 21, 2005


Transcript.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:43 AM on January 21, 2005


Great clip -- I wonder if Fox truly knew the extent of her conviction/criticism before inviting her on. Seems to me that even O'Reilly would have reservations about going up against this one. Tough lady. Good for her.
posted by terrier319 at 10:44 AM on January 21, 2005


Quick poll: who was more surprised by their "flyweight" guest, this dingbat FOX news anchor or Tucker Carlson 30 seconds into his Jon Stewart interview?
posted by sic at 10:45 AM on January 21, 2005


to kyrademon, thanks Civil_Disobedient.

My spin:
Brigitte Quinn was interrupted in her gushing over the glory of the inauguration, by a rather blunt Judy Bachrach.
Interesting was not so much Bachrach's point about poor military equipment and hardship in Iraq, but Quinn's fluster over Bachrach's view of a entirely different reality then her's.
She eventually cut Bachrach off with the line
"I think we have given you more then enough time to share your point of view"
posted by threehundredandsixty at 10:52 AM on January 21, 2005


kyrademon: basically the guest was a woman from Vanity Fair magazine who apparently was contacted to say a few fluffy things about the fancy inaugural celebration. But instead of fluffing, she immediately began to criticize Bush for spending 41 million on a bunch of parties when US soldiers in Iraq are scrounging for scrap metal to protect their "armored vehicles". The anchor, suprised at the unexpected turn the fluff piece had taken, began to defend Bush like the partisan Republican shill that she and all FOX news anchors are. The woman from Vanity Fair compared the modest inaugural party that FDR put on during wartime as a way to highlight Bush's insensitivity to the tragedy also known as the occupation of Iraq.

My favorite part of the exchange is when the FOX woman said that Bush had done more than enough to honor the troops by holding a prayer breakfast or some such nonsense and the Vanity Fair woman responded, to paraphrase: "wow, that should keep them safe and cozy in their sitting duck armored vehicles". She was soon cut off.
posted by sic at 10:52 AM on January 21, 2005


I'd guess the dingbat anchor just because Vanity Fair is presumably less combative and more predictable than Stewart, though Tucker's hurt more because it was longer and more personal.
posted by terrier319 at 10:52 AM on January 21, 2005


I can just picture a bunch of network directors angrily watching their monitors, yelling into the earpiece to the anchorwoman to cut her off.

More of this, please, America.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:56 AM on January 21, 2005


That was awesome. It's sad that guests have to "blindside" talking heads to get any sort of contrary opinion out.
posted by monkey!knife!fight! at 10:56 AM on January 21, 2005


My favorite part ..... "wow, that should keep them safe and cozy in their sitting duck armored vehicles". - INDEED
posted by threehundredandsixty at 10:58 AM on January 21, 2005


Judy Bachrach is sexy.
posted by VP_Admin at 10:59 AM on January 21, 2005


The problem (a problem?) with modern media coverage is that its 24-hour a day coverage requires so much editorializing and commenting that any actual reporting gets buried in the deluge.

You've hit on an important point here. The "All news! All the time!" 24-hour media cacophony creates (at times) an artificial urgency that is all-too-frequently filled by punditry and editorializing rather than in-depth reporting. Because genuinely good in-depth reporting takes time and at least a measure of critical thinking -- qualities which are anathema to the "all news! all the time!" soundbite-driven model of what passes for news these days. And this is true not just of Fox (though they're the most egregious example) but also of CNN, et al. The driving objective is to get something -- anything -- on the air.

ComedyTangentFilter: Mr. Show did a fine takeoff of this tendency in one sketch, where the reporter (Bob, I think) is at the scene of some breaking event, and says "we just don't have any more information at this time," and the anchor back in the studio (David) keeps demanding "news" that isn't there: "Bob, at what point will there be more information?" "Hard to say, David." "And what does that tell us about the urgency of the situation, and what it means for the hostages inside?" "I can't say at this time, David." "And when will you be able to say, Bob?" "I have no idea, David. There's just nothing more to say at this time." "Is there anything more to say now?" )
posted by scody at 10:59 AM on January 21, 2005


Vanity Fair, indeed.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:00 AM on January 21, 2005


began to defend Bush like the partisan Republican shill that she and all FOX news anchors are.

You and I didn't see the same piece. No fox supporter here, but except for the grim signoff where you expect at least a tight-lipped smile, the anchor acted pretty professionally. When Bachrach started ranting -- I agree with her, but admit it, it was a rant -- the anchor politely asked her what alternative arrangements she would have made. I was expecting a meltdown and if anything, it seemd Bachrach was the one unable to keep her shit together.

Look, there's an unspoken etiquette on these appearances which Bachrach kind of tossed out the window -- unless it's a Crossfire kind of show, don't start spewing hardcore partisan POV, just make your points with a kind of genteel pointedness. Otherwise you're ambushing the anchor.

I give Bachrach points for substance, and the Fox anchor -- who looks a lot like the ugly stepmother/bartender in Shrek 2 -- points for composure.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 11:00 AM on January 21, 2005


Quinn: All right, Judy Bachrach, I think we've given you more than your time to give us your point of view this morning.

Says it all, no?

and that site does rock, owillis--especially the brand dem stuff : >
posted by amberglow at 11:03 AM on January 21, 2005


You can send Judy Bachrach a thank you note at letters@vf.com.
posted by mudpuppie at 11:03 AM on January 21, 2005


I don't give the Fox anchor points, because her composure could have come in the form of much more professional and reality-based answers than (I paraphrase) "what about the prayer breakfast?1111?" Even a Republican can do better than that.
posted by inksyndicate at 11:05 AM on January 21, 2005


bravo! hahaha
mudpuppie: i actually might!!
posted by borq at 11:05 AM on January 21, 2005


yeah great site....

Warning: mysql_pconnect(): Can't create a new thread (errno 11). If you are not out of available memory, you can consult the manual for a possible OS-dependent bug in /home/www/oliverwillis.com/htdocs/includes/database.mysql.inc on line 12
Can't create a new thread (errno 11). If you are not out of available memory, you can consult the manual for a possible OS-dependent bug

DOH!
posted by zeoslap at 11:05 AM on January 21, 2005


zeo, keep trying it'll work eventually.
posted by rocket_skates at 11:06 AM on January 21, 2005


Another transcript. (I like its second screen-shot....)
posted by destinyland at 11:25 AM on January 21, 2005


What kind of a lame, playground response is "Well then, smarty-pants, how would YOU plan it?"

Bachrach said it should be scaled back in extravagance, what kind of response was Quinn looking for? The names and phone numbers of less expensive caterers and entertainment?
posted by ludwig_van at 11:29 AM on January 21, 2005


wow. That was hard.
posted by Yellowbeard at 11:43 AM on January 21, 2005


"I didn't want to argue politics with you this morning" == meltdown. Worst kind of anchoring.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 11:46 AM on January 21, 2005


- "I think it should be scaled back in extravagance."
- "Oh REALLY... .well just how would YOU do it."
- "I would, firstly, take the extravagance, and lessen it. Scale it back, if you will. Secondly, that's it."

She could have handled herself a bit better, I think, but I suspect that she went into the piece knowing that she was going to be blindsiding the lady with something unexpected. With that, I'm sure, comes a bit of nervousness and fear, even if it isn't really justified. The lady was asked on the show to talk about the inauguration festivities, and she gave her opinion. Nothing wrong with that. Fox News doesn't deserve to be protected from the truth - that such decadence is disturbing and unwarranted, downright disrespectful, given the situation so many americans, their sons, daughters, and loved ones, have been forced to cope with.

One of the signs at the protest today sums it up well: "Let the revellers eat MRE's."
posted by odinsdream at 11:50 AM on January 21, 2005


mudpuppie: i actually might!!

I did. I told her all about the plans for the shrine I'm going to build her.
posted by mudpuppie at 11:54 AM on January 21, 2005


Look, there's an unspoken etiquette on these appearances which Bachrach kind of tossed out the window -- unless it's a Crossfire kind of show, don't start spewing hardcore partisan POV, just make your points with a kind of genteel pointedness. Otherwise you're ambushing the anchor.
--- stupidsexyFlanders

I'm not slamming stupidsexyFlanders here, in fact I agree. But this succinctly underscores my earlier point about 'news' being entertainment and agenda driven rather than informative.
The fact that there's an 'etiquette' shows that providing information is not the focus.
How could someone who is tasked with facilitating the flow of factual information be 'ambushed'?

Again, I'm not ripping stupidsexyFlanders, just lamenting that the term 'news' sure doesn't mean what it used to.
posted by lirio at 11:55 AM on January 21, 2005


ssexyflanders: yep the anchor managed to look composed and not to jump to her throath, kudos to her.
She also started derailing very very quickly as soon as she spotted the interview wasn't going to be either
totally void of content or another "we're all proud and safe" feel good spot.

Indeed you see that Quinn skillfully plays the requalification card :
a) appeal to authority : "the president said" (which may also be true, it doesn't hurt)
b) requalification: it's a celebration of democracy ( you got it wrong it's not a rich hollywood like party)
c) implicit conclusion: it just happens to be after the start of 2nd term, but it is an otherwise obvious celebration
about Iraq.

Yeeeeeahh right

Then Bachrach hits her in the head with a big number, 40 million bucks no less ! Obviously Quinn can't believe that herself
but not being paid to be partisan as O'Reilly (or as much as him) she doesn't counter the number (probably also because she
has no alternative number to offer)

And so on ...the Vanity Fair editor knows how to play the gossip and outrage game very well and Fox is the natural place to
exercise that skill...it's spinned news with an outrage factor ..Vanity Fair meet Fox News....but Vanity Fair makes no secret about being a gossip entertainment vapid stuff...what about Fox News ?

The unfortunate thing is that some very common sense thing like

Well, gee, that prayer service should sure keep them safe and warm in their flimsy vehicles in Iraq.

and

Respect means keeping them secure.

Were buried under piles of rubbish...but that's better then nothing I guess.
posted by elpapacito at 11:57 AM on January 21, 2005


Ouch, now that I finally got through to the video I can see that Bachrach really wiped the floor with her!
posted by caddis at 12:01 PM on January 21, 2005


Two things:

1. That was excellent.

2. That flash player is crap, and doesn't work in Firefox, or at least not on my machine. Can we get an actual media file at some point? Standard video files have worked fine for years, there's really no reason to do all this via some weird interface like flash.
posted by Swervo at 12:02 PM on January 21, 2005


Worked in Firefox for me, after about a zillion tries, but I think that was more about the site being overloaded. I would guess this clip is flying through the internets at the speed of light, well at least the speed of electricity.
posted by caddis at 12:05 PM on January 21, 2005


Falafelling?
posted by bardic at 12:07 PM on January 21, 2005


. . . the Vanity Fair editor knows how to play the gossip and outrage game very well and Fox is the natural place to exercise that skill.

Excellent insight.
posted by caddis at 12:08 PM on January 21, 2005


elpapacito: unlike fox, VF does do substantial journalism from time to time. IIRC, there's at least one good, long, serious article in there each month, mixed in with the Washington/Hollywood/Manhattan social circuit blather and the pieces on art dealers, etc. It's a bizarro mix, like finding Seymour Hersch's Abu Ghraib story in People's 20 most intriguing celebrities issue. Actually, it's a little like People, except you get the feeling the intended readership is those who might actually be covered in the magazine itself, and not housewives in sweatpants vegging out in Dubuque with "All My Children" on the tube and junior trying to drown his sister in the neighbor's pool.
posted by trondant at 12:20 PM on January 21, 2005


Look, there's an unspoken etiquette on these appearances which Bachrach kind of tossed out the window -- unless it's a Crossfire kind of show, don't start spewing hardcore partisan POV, just make your points with a kind of genteel pointedness. Otherwise you're ambushing the anchor.

Look, there's an unspoken etiquette on news which Fox kind of tossed out the window -- unless it's a Crossfire kind of show, don't start spewing hardcore partisan POV, just make your points with a kind of genteel pointedness. Otherwise you're bushwhacking the public.

Karma is a boomerang.
posted by mkultra at 12:21 PM on January 21, 2005


I'm just surprised they didn't cut her off or immediately interrupt her. That's the normal Republican tactic that's worked so well for O-face O'Reilly for so long. Don't let the opposition speak, and you win by default!
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 12:34 PM on January 21, 2005


Wow, owillis really uglied-up his website since the last time I'd seen it.
posted by delmoi at 12:40 PM on January 21, 2005


Here's a question.. how much of the $40 million was public funds versus private donations?
posted by rulethirty at 12:45 PM on January 21, 2005


We don't really want to argue politics with you this afternoon rulethirty.
posted by caddis at 12:47 PM on January 21, 2005


I tought we were talking about the hottness of them chix ! D'oh !
posted by elpapacito at 12:50 PM on January 21, 2005


the anchor acted pretty professionally

JUDY: What I've noticed is the worse a war is going, the more lavish the inaugural festivities. When Franklin Delano Roosevelt was President, during a time of war, of course as you know, he had a very modest inauguration and a very tiny party where he served chicken salad, or where chicken salad was served. And that was when we were winning a war.

Fox News: Right, but, well, no, I, look, I mean, the President has, has addressed this, hasn't he, he said that this is a, I believe the quote was that we're celebrating, we're celebrating democracy, we're celebrating a peaceful transfer of democracy. What's wrong with doing that?

JUDY: Have you noticed any peace or any transfer of democracy in Iraq? If you have, you're the first person to have seen it.

Fox News: Well, I've noticed the elections coming up, and, to be honest...

JUDY: They don't seem very peaceful.

Fox News: ....I didn't want to argue politics with you this morning.
posted by mr.marx at 12:53 PM on January 21, 2005


Does anyone really believe that it would be nonpartisan or apolitical to come on the show and say how nicely all the ceremonies went off and how well-dressed and handsome the President looked?

Look, we live now with Bush's war, Bush's agenda, Bush's government, Bush's perpetual marketing machine. To just blabber along with it and hand on the package without comment is itself partisan.
posted by argybarg at 12:53 PM on January 21, 2005


a large chunk of it was federal homeland security money (warning: washington post link. reg. req.).
posted by Igor XA at 12:57 PM on January 21, 2005


Here's a question.. how much of the $40 million was public funds versus private donations?

Here's a question- how much of the "private donations" were possible because of Bush's lopsided tax cuts, which resuted in lower funding for things like, oh, body armor for our troops?
posted by mkultra at 12:59 PM on January 21, 2005


The anchor, suprised at the unexpected turn the fluff piece had taken, began to defend Bush like the partisan Republican shill that she and all FOX news anchors are

I'm no FOX supporter, and I certainly don't care for our President, to put it mildly, but I think this anchor did her job. The Vanity Fair person basically went on what is a clearly partisan rant. If it were a Conservative pundit up there going off on how lovely the event was, you'd expect an anchor to question that opinion by saying something like "but what about all the soldiers in Iraq that have to scrounge for scarp metal". You certainly wouldn't call that pandering to the corporate line, you'd call it challenging an opinion. It just so happens that in this instance the opinion challenged was one that most of us here happen to agree with. I can handle my views being challenged. Now, the part that pisses me off is when she basically says 'ok, interview over'. But the dialogue previous to that sounds to me like a reporter doing her job, which is to question.
posted by spicynuts at 1:15 PM on January 21, 2005


The Vanity Fair person basically went on what is a clearly partisan rant.

Criticism of the president is not inherently partisan. She said nothing that wouldn't have sounded perfectly appropriate coming out of a Republican's mouth, if only any with the spine to stand behind what they claim to believe existed. (And yes, that was a partisan remark.)
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:22 PM on January 21, 2005


rulethirty, I was wondering the same thing. According to this Washington Post article, none of the much-mentioned $40 million comes from government -- but there is no estimate of how much they did spend. I strongly doubt whether either participants in the Fox News dustup was aware of that:

Inauguration officials said they plan to spend $40 million on the four-day celebration, which will include fireworks, the swearing-in, a parade and nine balls. Those expenses -- which do not include security and other public services -- are being funded by private donors.

OMB and DHS spokesmen said they could not provide an estimate of what the inauguration will cost the federal government.

posted by coelecanth at 1:24 PM on January 21, 2005


I guess $40 million party favors can buy a lot of ...favors , regardless if its a Rep or a Dem or a Martian.

That is to say, donation ? Maybe it's investment.
posted by elpapacito at 1:33 PM on January 21, 2005


none of the much-mentioned $40 million comes from government

it's true. it's all from corporate sponsors who want to go to the inaugural ball and rub shoulders with legislatures and get them to pass pro-business legislation. the issue at hand is not where the money came from, it's the fact that such lavish celebrations are going on "in honor of" our troops, when our troops are out there facing unimaginable horror day in and day out. for nothing.

on another note, the quote of $40 million only includes those corporate donations, and just the cost of the celebrations. the taxpayers, most notably the city of Washington, are paying for all the security for the events - and you saw the pictures of the riot cops lining the streets. the security tab, last i checked, was estimated to be around $20 million, pushing the total cost of the inauguration up to more like $60 million.
posted by salad spork at 1:38 PM on January 21, 2005


This may be true but it isn't at all the point that Judy Bacharach, Contributing Editor at Vanity Fair, was trying to make. Her point -- that soldiers were forced to drive around in "flimsy" humvees because their money was being spent on lavish inaugural celebrations -- is false and extremely tendentious; and while I'm not sure what special expertise of hers got her onto Fox News, she's clearly no expert about matter. Not that Fox has any shortage of loudmouthed ignoramuses on their own staff. But this was just partisan bloviating.
posted by coelecanth at 1:52 PM on January 21, 2005


I guess Media Matters needs to update their scorecard. The correct tally for Faux was 19 to 8.
posted by danOstuporStar at 1:53 PM on January 21, 2005


coelecanth:
Her point -- that soldiers were forced to drive around in "flimsy" humvees because their money was being spent on lavish inaugural celebrations -- is false and extremely tendentious

It would have been, but as your correctly point out she didn't make that point at all. Rather she pointed attention to something very strident , that millions are being spent for parties, but evidently not enough is being done (and has been done so far) for the soldiers in Iraq.

One would think: money is the problem ? If so, let's divert money from party to Humvee. Mmhhh..but will soldiers remember about my donation ? Oh and WHO CARES about soldiers anyway soon the war will be over and they'll be forgotten, exaclty like 9-11 firefighters and policemen...better throw some "democracy celebratin'" party.

One would think : why in the hell should I feel obliged to donate for armor ? I paid taxes for that humvee to be built and my taxes paid the companies who built it. Maybe your tax money wasn't well spent after all ? Or some tactical error was made ? Who knows..
posted by elpapacito at 2:20 PM on January 21, 2005


Look, we live now with Bush's war, Bush's agenda, Bush's government, Bush's perpetual marketing machine. To just blabber along with it and hand on the package without comment is itself partisan.
posted by argybarg at 8:53 PM GMT on January 21


yes.
posted by sic at 3:05 PM on January 21, 2005


argybarg is completely right on.
posted by tkchrist at 3:24 PM on January 21, 2005


the anchor acted pretty professionally (and other comments pointing out that the anchor kept her composure).

That may all be true within context of what you have come to expect from Fox news. But I'm just astounded that their bias can show so transparently. Hell, not just transparently shown; they're not even trying to hide it. I've heard all the complaints about Fox news but I don't get it where I live so I've never seen it--this is the first time. How can the presenter of a purported news organization fly into a panic (however well or poorly concealed) at a comment critical of a politician?

I'm not being disengenuous here. I'm honestly amazed that the media situation in the U.S. has deteriorated to the point where outright bias is just assumed on the part of a major news gathering organization.

(I know, "Good Morning, Sunshine" but I honestly haven't seen Fox news before.)
posted by Turtles all the way down at 3:32 PM on January 21, 2005


disingenuous, of course.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 3:33 PM on January 21, 2005


turtles: you must be watching BBC all the time...the first time I watched Fox I tought it was a news program with an opinion spin..then I understood it's spin (opinionated opinion) with some news here and there. My sensation is BBC is the last bastion or the least corrupt, but I may be wrong or missing other programming.

On a tangent: Euronews' "No comment" is top 10 in my tv that doesn't suck list.
posted by elpapacito at 3:36 PM on January 21, 2005


turtles: you must be watching BBC all the time

Well, CBC, but yeah, same idea.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 3:38 PM on January 21, 2005


I found it rather amusing that FoxNews, of all places, found it acceptable to disregard mention of "Our Troops" so casually.

Why does FoxNews hate America?

Also, what kind of world are we living in when saying that said troops are direly in need of armor is considered partisan ranting? Just because it's being compared to the cash doled out for a party to celebrate Dear Leader Bush's dynasty? Call me simplistic, but I just don't get it.
posted by snarkywench at 4:01 PM on January 21, 2005


Also, what kind of world are we living in when saying that said troops are direly in need of armor is considered partisan ranting?


snarkywench: that's also kind of what I'm getting at. At the risk of Godwinizing in an Orwellian sense (well, you know what I mean) I'm getting the sense that Americans are getting perilously close to the realization of Thought Crime.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 4:29 PM on January 21, 2005


rulethirty where did you go? You know when I said we did not want to debate you that was more a joke about MeFi than wanting you to go away. We need more views from the other side to keep us honest. Debate MeFi like Bachrach did Fox and you are my hero. Come back and tell us why Bachrach was wrong.
posted by caddis at 4:34 PM on January 21, 2005


Actually caddis, don't you think rulethirty's point was somewhat valid? To be strictly fair, if the $40 million were generated from privately donated funds which would never have otherwise gone to vehicle armor, then...

No, actually it still sucks and is still disgusting. Never mind!
posted by Turtles all the way down at 5:07 PM on January 21, 2005


Here's my conception of a President who was 'doing the right thing'. His heart would ache not only for the casualties among his own forces, but also for the innocent civilian casualties. Nonetheless, he would continue with the mission in the expectation that the populace formerly under the thumb of the brutal dictator would, in the end, experience freedom and liberation.

Maybe that's what George Bush is thinking. Maybe not. But nowhere in that scenario do I find any kind of joy that would warrant a celebration.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 5:12 PM on January 21, 2005


does anyone have a non-embedded clip. i'd love to save this to my collection of savage media shitstorms.

great link, btw.
posted by moonbird at 6:06 PM on January 21, 2005


Turtles, you appear to lack the proper conservative conviction. My guess is that you were rocking back and forth nervously as you wrote that, and it isn't even that conservative.
posted by caddis at 6:07 PM on January 21, 2005


How about:

This country is the greatest engine of freedom the world has ever seen. Celebrate, Hell yes. We should be proud of what we have accomplished so far in routing not one, but two evil dictatorships in a few short years. We are embarked upon a serious endeavor that asks much of each American in terms of the financial burden. That is why we have financed this celebration of freedom almost entirely through donations so as not to use taxpayer's hard earned dollars. Instead we can use the money saved to help our troops in Iraq.

That is true conservative bile!
posted by caddis at 6:12 PM on January 21, 2005



Quinn: [..] let me ask you this, what, I mean, what, what should they have cut back on? I mean, we have lavish inaugurations --

Bachrach: How about 40 million dollars?

[..]

Quinn: How would you plan it?

Bachrach: [..] We have soldiers who are incapable of protecting themselves in their Humvees in Iraq. They have to use bits of scrap metal in order to make their Humvees secure. Their Humvees are sitting ducks for bombs. And we have a president who's using 40 million dollars to have a party. That's a start.


elpapacito, it seems clear that she did make the point: the implication is that the President is spending $40 million on himself when he could be using it to armor Humvees. That implication is just wrong, and I choose to believe she's merely ignorant about it, rather than purely mendacious.

Now, elsewhere she does suggest that it's simply inappropriate to have any kind of lavish celebration when troops are deployed in combat, and that's a reasonable sentiment, about which reasonable people can disagree. But it ought to be obvious that she's just talking off the top of her head here -- she really doesn't know anything about it. There's a special channel where you can reliably find people shouting their baseless opinions under the false flag of "journalism," and it's Fox News. Fortunately, she found it too.
posted by coelecanth at 6:18 PM on January 21, 2005


Who does know, you?
posted by caddis at 6:29 PM on January 21, 2005


caddis: you got me, buddy
posted by Turtles all the way down at 6:40 PM on January 21, 2005


caddis, lots of people know how the inaugural gets funded. For example, The L.A. Times knows. ABC News knows. On January 18th, Mickey Kaus knew that Howie Kurtz knew (on the 14th) that the Post knew on the 12th. I might add that one reason people know this is, it's how inaugurals have been funded for a while. If you don't already know and you are even mildly curious, It's difficult to avoid finding out. Which is why it's annoying to see someone who's, like, loosely affiliated with big media, and who's being paid to appear as an expert on SOMEthing, go on TV and give people the wrong idea. The big story about these donations is the certainly the question of influence purchasing, as elpapacito said up higher. What I DON'T know is why I'm still talking about this. Shoutfest on Fox News! Film at 11!
posted by coelecanth at 6:58 PM on January 21, 2005


When we can not seem to raise enough money to provide our troops with proper armor how can we turn our attention to raising money for a series of victory parties? There is only so much cash we can extract from these donors and wouldn't it be better to funnel it toward our men and women who are risking their lives for our freedom than to waste it on a huge celebration? Where are our priorities? They do not seem to be with the troops.
posted by caddis at 7:32 PM on January 21, 2005


Because Republicans don't give a shit for the troops or this country.
posted by owillis at 7:33 PM on January 21, 2005


They have ribbons, don't they?
posted by caddis at 7:37 PM on January 21, 2005


I don't quite get what was so horrible about the clip. It made Fox look good, if anything. The guest was a bit rude, but maybe she thought she had to f'buster to get her say, which is understandible; it's not like they went to a "Please Stand By" graphic when she started talking.

By the way, I would have preferred less than $40M spent, but how much did other Americans spend on moronic activities yesterday? In casinos? At moronic films? Etc? How many billion? At least this was uplifting, and we got a great speech from George Bush.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:22 PM on January 21, 2005


we got a great speech from George Bush.

Your expectations, sir, are low.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 8:51 PM on January 21, 2005


Well, he didn't write the speech, but it has been widely acclaimed as a good, if not great speech.

But of course, your comment was more snarky, and more in tune with the Mefi demo. Whatever.
posted by ParisParamus at 9:33 PM on January 21, 2005


Heck, Peggy Noonan didn't like it either.
posted by raysmj at 12:16 AM on January 22, 2005


She liked it; she didn't like it as much as she wanted to like it. That said, I find it highly telling (and amusing) that even some of Bush's supporters are disturbed by his lack of nuance.
posted by RylandDotNet at 2:26 AM on January 22, 2005


The Vanity Fair person basically went on what is a clearly partisan rant

I disagree. Not a rant and not partisan. How is it at all partisan? If the President were a Democrat and the same thing occurred the opinion or complaint or issue would be the same. Why is it that criticism is now partisan?

The piece was about commenting on the Inauguration. Suddenly the fact that the nation is at war is to be forgotten, despite it being drummed over and over again during the election which resulted in this inauguration. She feels it is in bad taste. Nothing less, nothing more. Partisan?
posted by juiceCake at 7:30 AM on January 22, 2005


It's the inauguration speech; it's not a policy speech; it's not even the State of the Union Address!
posted by ParisParamus at 7:44 AM on January 22, 2005


Question:

Why didn't Washington DC tell the Prez to get bent when told they'd be coughing up $12m for security?

Why didn't they just refuse to do it? Let the inauguration be held somewhere else.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:51 AM on January 22, 2005


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