October 22, 2013

Howie Kurtz has found a true home at Fox News, where he's called in routinely throughout the day to offer his expert opinion on all sorts of issues. With Fox doing the fast pivot toward an all-out assault on all of the Affordable Care Act because the website isn't working properly.

Gretchen felt compelled to really reach, first calling Monday's Rose Garden event "campaign-ish" and then moving on to a montage of previous landmark speeches given by other Presidents. Her choices were JFK's speech following the Cuban Missile Crisis, FDR's speech on December 8, 1941 following the attack on Pearl Harbor, and Ronald Reagan's speech calling for Gorbachev to "tear down this wall."

Because holding a small White House event about a rocky rollout of the front door to the ACA is exactly like Pearl Harbor and the Cuban Missile Crisis, right?

What struck me most about this particular exercise in intellectual dishonesty was how they tried to ignore all of the speeches this president has given that are truly remarkable and would be transformative if we weren't constantly having to deal with the 24/7 pablum dished out to willing viewers by the likes of Fox News.

I'm thinking, for example, about his Kansas speech on the economy and middle class. Or his landmark speech in 2008 on race and the state of race relations in this country. Or, most recently, his speech on the government shutdown, where he lit Republicans up like a carved-out pumpkin.

To remind Gretchen, perhaps she should have clipped this part of that speech:

Just yesterday, one House Republican said -- I'm quoting here, because I want to make sure people understand I didn't make this up. One House Republican said, “We’re not going to be disrespected. We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is.” That was a quote. "We're not going to be disrespected. We have got to get something out of this. And I don't know what that even is." Think about that.

You have already gotten the opportunity to serve the American people. There is no higher honor than that. (Applause.) You've already gotten the opportunity to help businesses like this one, workers like these. So the American people aren't in the mood to give you a goodie bag to go with it. What you get is our intelligence professionals being back on the job. What you get is our medical researchers back on the job. (Applause.) What you get are little kids back into Head Start. (Applause.) What you get are our national parks and monuments open again. What you get is the economy not stalling, but continuing to grow. (Applause.) What you get are workers continuing to be hired. That's what you get. That's what you should be asking for. Take a vote, stop this farce, and end this shutdown right now. (Applause.)

If you're being disrespected, it's because of that attitude you got that you deserve to get something for doing your job. Everybody here just does their job, right? If you're working here and in the middle of the day you just stopped and said, you know what, I want to get something, but I don't know exactly what I'm going to get. (Laughter.) But I'm just going to stop working until I get something. I'm going to shut down the whole plant until I get something.

As for Howie Kurtz and his anemic, giggled disclaimer that maybe it wasn't appropriate to compare a Rose Garden event to a major presidential speech, well...meh. He's found himself a happy home over there in Roger Ailes' Media Bubble Paradise.

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