Today: Howard Dean, Keith Olbermann, and The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer.
Fair and Balanced
Rachel started us off with the news that the news itself is freaking out.
Or rather Fox News is freaking out, which is making actual news outlets cover the story like it’s a real one.
As you may know, the White House had the bad taste to mention that the channel that functions like the propaganda arm of the political right is functioning like the propaganda arm of the political right, and rather than taking even a fraction of a second for reflection, the Fox News pundits have swirled themselves into Level Ten tizzies.
The latest insidious development is that Rachel and her colleague/pal Keith Olbermann went to Washington with some other liberal political commentators. So you can imagine.
(While I know that many on the far right are imagining Rachel, Keith, and the President pushing little hammers and sickles around a map while cackling evilly and throwing darts at an enemies list, I’m imagining Rachel and Keith road tripping together, singing along with the radio and eating copious amounts of Funyuns.)
What exactly is wrong with Karl Rove? Does he just have sociopathic lying abilities, or did something happen to him and now his reality shifts around so he actually believes what he’s saying?
Dick Cheney, fresh from having his internal organs resoldered and burnished and the remnants of his immortal soul vacuumed out, attended an awards dinner put on by the Center for Security Policy. Yes, of course, those are Neocons.
Cheney accepted the “Keeper of the Flame” award. Based on his speech, the flame he’s keeping is the one that continues to burn brightly on his pants.
No Man’s War
Rachel noted that we kill a lot of people in Pakistan, a country with which we are technically not at war.
We do a lot of that killing with flying drones, and for some reason our heavily armed robots that rain death from above are not making us popular with the locals.
Rachel welcomed Jane Mayer of The New Yorker for a fascinating (if depressing) conversation about her new article on the drone attacks, “The Predator War.”
Hey! We made some civil rights progress!
Rachel reported that Congress passed the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act, which expands the definition of Federal hate crimes.
The usual suspects acted like beating up people who are different than them was a favorite toy that was getting yanked away, but let’s focus on the positive: President Obama plans to sign it into a law.
In other legal news, the Veterans Administration can now budget a year in advance, which will allow the V.A. to better plan for and thus care for 23 million veterans.
It was doubly good news for Rachel, who was able to go into rhapsodies about how boring administrative stuff can create real good in the world. I’m glad she’s happy.
Faith Snowe More
Senator Olympia Snowe (R – Maine) voted for Senate Finance Committee bill, which didn’t have a public option, but she won’t vote for the combined bill, which will, so let’s stop talking about Olympia Snowe for thirty seconds.
Instead, let’s talk about the damned Conservadems again.
On the bright side, we’ll be talking about them (and filibustering and cloture) with former DNC chair Howard Dean.