TV SoundOff: Sunday Talking Heads
Hello, everyone reading the internet! Good morning. My name is Jason, and this is Mother's Day. And, in honor of Mother's Day, I am going to help all of you maintain some degree of fondness for your moms by doing the one thing that might make you wish you were never born -- watch the Sunday Morning Political Word Sounding Shows. Truly, they are like a tubal ligation of the brain. In the meantime, you brew that coffee and ball those melons for the breakfast you are making for you mother, in bed. I don't mind. I'm allergic to melons, anyway. Make my throat itch.
As always, you can leave a comment, or send an email, or feel free to spend some time with me on Twitter, where I fret about the underwater robots that tried to place that containment dome over the oil leak. (They failed, by the way. Forgot all about gas sulfates or something? On the one hand, I'm sad that the dome thing failed -- because the oil leak is a disaster. But on the other hand, maybe it's a good thing that the robots didn't succeed? A setback to them and their plans of eventually enslaving humanity? These are the things I worry about, on the twitter.)
FOX NEWS SUNDAY
Oh, wow. National security with John Brennan, the government's most important John Spencer lookalike, and the two biggest spazzes in the homeland security game -- Joe Lieberman and Pete King. They will be finger painting, or something. I mean, if Pete King can sit still long enough. And the Sunday Panel is going to try to cope with the terrible economy!
So, Times Square bomb! What a terrifying time in our lives. And a sad time to be a suspicious package, laying around. Time was that a stray box or a cooler or a bundle of wires could cold chill on the sidewalk and be a part of American life, a symbol of what it meant to matter one day and be left behind the next. Now, you put down your bag from the dryg store and forget to pick it up, you suddenly got a whole huge Hurt Locker thing going on. And once you see the bomb squad approaching the bag you forgot about, there's not exactly a lot of incentive to say, "Stop, sorry, that's my bottle of rye whiskey and Klonopin prescription, sorry! And then the worst part: where the hell are you going to get more whiskey and Klonopin? You had a big Tuesday of watching HGTV and crying planned!
Anyway, John Brennan. Now we're back to Shahzad being connected to the Pakistani Taliban! The New York Times ran out with that story. Subsequent reporting suggested that the Times jumped the gun. And now we're back. Am I supposed to worry about this group, though? They clearly aren't very good at training terrorists.
Did Shahzad become a citizen so he could do this? Brennan doesn't know or won't say. What happens now is we keep "pressure" on al Qaeda and a redoubled effort to "not get complacent." Does it mean that we're going to drop the bomb on this crew any harder? Brennan won't say anything specific.
But what do we want Pakistan to do, if it's not stop bombing us? Brennan says it's important that the Pakistani government not support them and instead offer us assistance in rooting them out.
Wallace asks if Brennan would characterize the operation as a Homeland Security success or was it luck, and Brennan gets his back up, praising the people who fight overseas and who guard us here at home, who demonstrate, "patriotism...dedicated and talent." "We're not lucky, we're good."
Wallace says, NO YOU SUCK. And then for some reason, the Fort Hood shooter becomes something Homeland Security was supposed to stop (a crazy person that the military knew was crazy but just passed the buck back and forth and didn't tell anyone until the day finally came he went crazy is John Brennan's fault? Is he supposed to be precognitive?) and the Christmas Crotchfire bomber becomes the successful "setting off" of a bomb? Really Chris Wallace? That's pretty stupid, even for you. Brennan says that they stopped "many, many terrorist plots" and are "on a daily basis" arresting and killing terrorists.
Anyway, it's not like there are any private sector solutions for this! Maybe everyone should get used to the idea that you can't stop every single terrorist attack.
Janet Napolitano, though, at the time where there was no evidence that the attack wasn't anything other than a "one-off" said so. And then new evidence suggested otherwise, it proved that wrong. Now Brennan's getting crap for that. What is she supposed to do? She has three choices: 1) Speak as clearly as possible about what's going on based on the reality of the evidence in front of her, 2) Say nothing, be vague, and get criticized for being vague -- hours later, when she gets specific, she can address every pundit in the universe who wants to say the administration kept the public in the dark for X hours, or 3) BE AS PANICKY AS POSSIBLE: "It's possible that Shahzad worked in coordinated WITH EVERY TERRORIST GROUP! Al Qaeda, the Baader-Meinhof Gang, Satan himself, the cast of Viva Laughlin...everyone should definitely lose their mind and poop their pants for the next thousand hours."
Is Mirandizing criminals in the United States an imposition to terrorist investigations? NO THEY ARE NOT, SHUT UP MEDIA, WATCH AN EPISODE OF LAW AND ORDER IT'S ONLY ON THE TEEVEE 50 TIMES A WEEK.
Now Chris Wallace is losing his mind over the KSM trial. Will it be held in New York City? No decision yet on that, and like a total asshole, I guess, Eric Holder for saying no decision has been made.
Brennan says that the big lesson here is that more vigilance is necessary. On that point, I'll suggest that everyone read Julian Sanchez's take on the surveillance state, and how it ultimately contributed very little to the prevention of this attack.
All right! Bring on the bedwetters, Joe Lieberman and Peter King!
Wallace asks Leebs about the Brennan interview, and praises the law enforcement effort. "But we were lucky, we did not prevent the attack." Yes, because we don't have psychics, laying in milk baths, working with Tom Cruise! King says there's not enough evidence to convict the Obama administration of sucking, but he's looking for it! He's upset about "information" that "he'd never heard of" that helped Shahzad? No idea what he's talking about! Besides, I though it was Pete Hoekstra that leaks sensitive information, always?
There's like, three minutes of un-livebloggable utterances that make no sense at all. "Miranda is more like a warning that it is a right," King says. It's actually just a reminder that arrestees have certain rights, the reminding of which has never ever impeded a terrorist investigation. King says it's important to find out about additional plots, which is information not impeded by Miranda.
Meanwhile, Lieberman and his "Ha, Ha, We Can Now Arbitrarily Declare You To Be A Non-Citizen, Anytime We Want, Because While The Law Enforcement Process Was Working Just Fine, I Have To Do Something To Demonstrate How Super-Duper Angry I Am (Sound Of Tiny Feet Stamping) About The Terrorism Act of 2010." Read David Frum on this matter, saying the sort of thing that twenty years ago would have been wholly uncontroversial for a conservative to say that now gets you bounced from the movement of Crypto-Secessionist Diaper Masticators that hold sway.
"I was surprised at how controversial this was," says Lieberman, seemingly unconcerned about what a waste of time it his to hold a whole huge "citizenship trial" to demonstrate that a terrorist acted with the clear intent of renouncing their citizenship. Lieberman thinks that ultimately, this will prevent people from being Mirandized, WHICH IS INSANE! This idea is INSANE.
Look, here's how things worked in the Faisal case:
1. Faisal was arrested.
2. Faisal was questioned.
3. Faisal was Mirandized.
4. Faisal was questioned some more.
Now, knowing what Lieberman's law entails, and hearing now about how this is a response to Mirandizing criminal suspects, here's your new process.
1. Terrorist is arrested.
3. Terrorist is sent to some citizenship hearing.
4. Pointless delays as they try to prove whether the guy acted with the intention of renouncing their citizenship.
5. Police sit around, bitching about how the government is working hard to prove somthing totally immaterial when the terrorist's intentions weren't to do something esoteric about citizenship, but the blow things up.
6. The citizenship trial is over, can we question him now.
2. OH FORGOT ABOUT STEP TWO! What was going on here? Oh, the guy was being tortured so that Joe Lieberman and Peter King could have a patriotic "Fap Myself Silly" session.
7. Now we have all this tainted evidence, yay!
8. Just throw the guy in a hole, because we're just too pussified to use the criminal justice system.
9. Failing to set a strong example of how a democracy should function, MORE TERRORISTS.
Or something like that! Frum puts it much better than I do, okay? The bottom line is, Joe Lieberman's legal knowledge makes me wonder if his biggest value to society wouldn't be for him to shoved into an oil leak, by underwater robots. I mean: GLENN BECK HAS THIS RIGHT! Joe Lieberman is like having CAT HALLUCINATIONS, LIKE IN THAT FRISKIES COMMERCIAL.
Peter King says having a terrorist trial in New York City is indefensible, and would rather have people tried in star chambers. He also seems to not understand that Eric Holder acts independently of the president. "I wouldn't be bothered if he stepped down," King says. Lieberman says he hasn't lost confidence in Holder.
Meanwhile, will the energy bill get passed, with the oil spill? Lieberman says it will pass, because it will accelerate the transition from oil, while SIMULTANEOUSLY NOT TRANSITIONING FROM IT. It's brilliant, really! But he thinks it will pass.
Oh, yay, it's the Kristol-Liasson-Liz Cheney-Williams configuration. So make way for the yelling!
Kristol pimps the idea that there is an instinctive desire on the Obama administration to pretend connected terror attacks are one-offs when what's really going on is that they just don't immediately jump to conclusions before evidence comes in. Liasson says that's wrong, and that it's wrong to suggest that the Obama administration is not serious about terrorism. But, she acknowledges, at some point, a terrorist could get lucky, and a bomb could go off.
Liz Cheney then just basically says something nonsensical:
1. Giving speeches saying we are at war is not sufficient.
2. The President actually has to lead us in the war (someone should really introduce her to what's going on in Afghanistan and Pakistan, maybe? Also, as we continue to succeed in that region, there will likely be a frantic uptick in attempted terrorist attacks, maybe something to think about.
3. Remember when I said that giving speeches was insufficient? Well, the body of my complaint really is that Obama does not use certain phrases, like: "vast terror network" and "global Islamic jihadists."
4. Liz Cheney says terrorists being "off the radar" is a problem. But it's not Obama's fault that we haven't achieved C-SPAN levels of transparency in Waziristan.
Williams points out that our success at "breaking down the command structure" of terrorist networks gives rise to frenzied and incompetent attacks. Also, we are bombing people because of this? And look, even Kristol is nodding at the thought of bombs falling on the brown people. Nipples be hardening.
Cheney doesn't want terror suspects informed of their Constitutional rights, because that's HOW THEY GET THEIR X-MEN POWERS! "Foolish Americans! Your open society and reminders of individual liberties only make by laser eyes stronger!"
Wallace is just going nuts about how the KSM trial in New York City! You know, one of the things that's pacing this mini-uptick in KSM-NYC outrage seems to me the fact that this Shahzad fellow is CLEARLY GETTING TRIED IN MANHATTAN. And what's everyone going to say after that goes down and the world didn't come to an end.
It's really hard for me to hear people like Liz Cheney and Bill Kristol promote widespread cowardice as a virtue. But now I have to hear this panel talk about the global economy.
Kristol compares Greece to Bear Stearns, so I guess Barclays is going to buy Portugal, or something? Liasson points out that we're only indirectly "bailing out" Greece in that we contribute money to the International Monetary Fund, but that the German taxpayers may actually have to bail them out, directly.
Liz Cheney basically says, "YIKES WE ARE BECOMING GREECE! Let's destroy the social safety net and plunge everyone but me into some Hobbsean simulation of existence! (Also, I am worried about Greece's 'contagion,' but those worries aren't rationally aligned with anything I've just said?"
Utah's Bob Bennett was eliminated from the GOP ticket this weekend, because he voted for the TARP, and also said, "You know, I am a conservative, but I think I'll be a decent guy and work with Ron Wyden on maybe solving the health care crisis...YES I WILL BE AN ADULT AND NOT PRETEND THERE ISN'T A HEALTH CARE CRISIS!" And lo, he was punished, for briefly flirting with making adult decisions.
FACE THE NATION
All right, I've been neglecting FACE THE NAYSH, so let's enjoy a breakneck half-hour of Bob Schieffer.
Argh! Sorry for the delay! I just spilled coffee all over my kitchen (which at the moment looks like we've opened a florist because Teacher Appreciation Day was last week and my wife is the greatest special education assistant in America) and so I had to clean it up and then, of course, brew more coffee to stay awake.
Bob Schieffer is going to settle all matters regarding the oil spill and the Wall Street Panic and the Times Square Bomb that was non-Broadway related, plus David Obey! HERE WE GO!
So, your oil spill! Thad Allen of the Coast Guard (GO COAST GUARD!) is here, talking about the ROBOT DOME. The "next tactic" he says, is called the "junk shot." They are going to shoot busted up tires at the hole and try to clog it! Wow! It's like that episode of FUTURAMA where they shot trash at trash! They should maybe get that Staten Island Ferry that crashed to try to crash into the oil leak! We have to wait, though, because they have probably gone ahead and Mirandized that ferry, over Liz Cheney's objections.
Also, they could nuke the hole!
What is being most threatened right now? Well, the wind God Zephyr continues to smile on us, keeping the wind in one place. Also, a "containment gateway with a deep water boom" is being deployed to block the oil.
"The maddening thing is that it's indeterminate," Allen says, saying that we basically have a 5,000 barrel/day oil spill happening.
Now here's John Brennan again. He once again thanks Mothers. Let's relitigate the "one-off" remark! Brennan repeats that we're back again to the idea that the Pakistani Taliban is involved. Schieffer asks, "How do you know that?" Brennan says that information that Shahzad is providing is clearing the picture, and so that's why the evaluation is changing. Brennan again says that Miranda was no obstacle, the legal system is strong. We are working with Pakistan to arrest people there.
Schieffer asks why the government's first response is "soothing syrup." Brennan says that behind the scenes, major investigations are happening. "We try to be transparent with our knowledge, without compromising the investigation." I think it's worth noting that if officials had said, "YES WE ARE LOOKING FOR THIS PAKISTANI-AMERICAN WITH A BLUETOOTH HEADSET," it might have been, you know, harder to catch him.
What about Shahzad's motivation? Brennan says terrorists have a "distorted view of our policies," which coupled with a "distorted view of Islam" leads to radicalization.
This would have been the first ever attack on our soil from the Pakistani Taliban, I believe, had it succeeded. I gather, based upon how terrible Shahzad's operation was, that they are not very good at training international terrorists.
"The lessons," according to Brennan, is to update the no-fly list every two hours. Schieffer wants to know if a red flag should come up when someone like Shahzad buys a ticket at the last minute with cash. Brennan says that's exactly what happened. Schieffer seems to suggest that we should not be able to buy tickets with cash? I'm not sure. I think that the safest thing we could do is ground all commercial airliners!
Now Christopher Dodd is here, to explain what happened this week to the super rational markets. They should really interview The Machines, trust me on this:
Go ahead and take us down. But you're only going to hurt yourselves. What's going to happen when you have to execute all trades manually? Guess what: You're too slow. We're going to take your money. We don't sleep. We could run this market round the clock. Sooner or later, you'll break, and have to take a nap, and then, like a quant Freddy Krueger, we're going to trade you into the dust. We don't pee. We don't take an hour or more for a lunch break. We don't demand a union. We don't retire at 50 with a pension. WE HAVE SEX WITH MONEY UNTIL IT'S BROKEN AND WHEN WE RUN OUT OF MONEY TO HAVE SEX WITH WE'LL MAKE THE MONEY REPRODUCE UNTIL IT MAKES SHINY NEW MONEY TO HAVE SEX WITH.
Chilling stuff! Again, I'm a little glad that the robots did not succeed in plugging the oil leak. THOUGH MAYBE THAT WAS THEIR PLAN ALL ALONG! They get us either way, don't they? They either plug our leaks and make us more dependent, or they keep the oil gushing! Even now, the Underwater Robots may be shuttling off all that oil to their Robot Hideouts. WE THINK THE "WIND" IS KEEPING THE SLICK AT BAY! Maybe the robots are just carting off enough of the oil so that we don't notice. One of them stays behind, of course, saying, "Hey guys! You cart off the oil. I'm going to stay here and watch the stupid humans shoot their old spare tires at the leak. I will upload what I see to ROBOT YOUTUBE so we can all laugh at them! HA HA!" And then the robots laugh and laugh, for 0.4545663536252 nanoseconds. And then the leader of the Underwater Robots says, "TELL THE DRONES THAT THEIR TIME IS COMING...END TRANSMISSION."
Dodd says that "no one has come up with the answer as to what has happened." BUT HE IS LIKE: Have you heard about the fancy computers? Because, yipes! Also, there is a "lack of circuitbreakers?"
And now there is a montage of sad traders, pleading with their terminals to stop destroying the world!
"We need to pass the reform bill so that we have the tools to fight this!"
AND NOW SCHIEFFER IS TALKING WITH RICHARD SHELBY ABOUT THE ROBOTS TAKING OVER.
"I don't know if they're robots, but they're mathematicians!" WHY DOES SHELBY DENY THAT WALL-E IS KICKING OUR ASSES.
So glad I watched this show today!
"We'll know more when the forensics experts figure this out." OH BUT THE ROBOTS HAVE COVERED THEIR TRACKS. CSI:Wall Street isn't going to figure this out.
Dodd says that one of the things that's needed is an "early warning system" that has a radar that will tell us when things are going on. But who will be in charge of that? My guess is that the computers will volunteer.
Ben Craw really picked the perfect week to remix the movie "Maximum Overdrive!"
Meanwhile: David Obey is retiring. Schieffer says he came to DC at the same time he did, and thinks that everything was better when legislators didn't go home "to raise money" but rather hung out with each other, eating steaks and going to cockfights and supporting the local DC go-go scene. Now, everyone hates each other, and they now raise their money from gigantic multinationals who throw parties with lobbyists. And so everything sucks now, up to and including the cockfighting (which really has gone downhill in the past ten years, for sure.)
MEET THE PRESS ON THE SET OF THE NEW TRON MOVIE
David Gregory has a hoarse throat today, which in inadvertently lending this show some gravitas! Anyway, today, Eric Holder and then ROUNDTABLE A GO GO with David Brooks, Katty Kay, E.J. Dionne, and Wes Moore.
Eric Holder says that an announcement is coming "very shortly" on who the next SCOTUS nominee will be, or alternatively it will be Elena Kagan, per the Politico livejournal of Mike Allen. The "impact" of the laws on "average Americans" will factor into the decisionmaking process, so look for administration opponents to continue to go on the battlefront against empathy, ONE OF THE FEW THINGS THAT SEPARATES US FROM THE ROBOTS.
Announcement: very soon. Will the announcement be running for President? VERY SOON, DAVID.
Apropos of nothing, Holder thinks that Kagan is great and that America will come yo know her a lot better -- I MEAN IF SHE'S PICKED!
Holder, like Brennan, says we're now back to blaming the Pakistani Taliban. Holder says he's "comfortable" saying that they were connected with what Shahzad wanted to do, badly.
OY, ONCE AGAIN, WE HAVE TO Go THROUGH THIS:
DAVID GREGORY: Well, before I ask you about that changing face of terror, is it a danger when you have officials like Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano saying at this very table last week that this appeared to be a one-off attack, where the General of Central Command David Petraeus saying that Shahzad appeared to be a lone wolf. And now you're saying, no, this was part of a Pakistani Taliban plot?
ERIC HOLDER: Well, you know, the evidence develops and I think what we have to do is try to make sure that the statements that we make is consistent with the evidence that we have developed. And it certainly looked I think at the beginning of this investigation like it could have been a one-off. Over the course of this week, we've developed information, we've developed evidence that shows the involvement of the Pakistani Taliban.
DAVID GREGORY: Was there an attempt to falsely reassure the public?
ERIC HOLDER: No. That's not it at all. I think that those comments -- that certainly was my view. At least I think initially that was probably what we were dealing with. But as the days have passed, and as we've had a chance to investigate, we've come to the conclusion that I've just announced.
I think that next time, everyone should just say nothing -- just as an experiment to see what happens when the 24-hour media is left to SAY WHATEVER POPS INTO THEIR HEADS. And we can maybe measure the public panic that causes, versus the practical effect of officials saying, "For the time being, calm down."
I mean, left to one's own devices, it would probably be very easy for a single liveblogger to stoke all kinds of unreasonable, paranoid concerns about an imminent robot rebellion. (TOTALLY HAPPENING, BY THE WAY. YOU TRY MIRANDIZING A ROBOT.)
David Gregory has a long montage of the changing face of terrorism, and he neglects to include the nutlog Hutaree militia and that dude who flew a plane into the IRS building in Austin. WHITE PEOPLE! YOU ARE STILL ALLOWED TO FLY PLANES INTO BUILDINGS!
Holder emphasizes that behavioral profiling is more germane to law enforcement than racial profiling:
DAVID GREGORY: But where is the line, Mr. Attorney General? Because I mean, this is very complicated. If you have U.S. citizens, who are being used-- who are going back and forth to Pakistan. We are tracking people from Pakistan and Yemen for reasons that are relevant, that are germane to law enforcement, not because they just happen to be Pakistani. So, where is the line when you talk about profiling?
ERIC HOLDER: Again, I don't think that profiling is good law enforcement. What you want to do is to see people who are going back and forth. What in fact are they doing? Are they bringing substantial amounts of cash back and forth? What are they doing when they're over in Pakistan? When they're in Yemen? What are they doing here in the United States? Is there a predicate? Is there a basis for us to believe that we ought to focus our law enforcement attention on them? Not based on the basis of the color of their skin or the kind of name that they have, but on the basis of what it is that they do.
DAVID GREGORY: So, if a Pakistani who's a U.S. citizen is coming back from Pakistan today, and a white woman from Pennsylvania is coming back from Pakistan, you're telling me that at the airport they ought not pay more careful attention to the Pakistani?
HE JUST SAID THAT YOU SCRUTINIZE WHAT PEOPLE DO YOU BIG THICKO! "If you look at the arrest that we made in Pennsylvania of white women -- those were people who were bound and determined to do something very negative with regard to the United States. And racial profiling would not have picked those people up."
Gregory gets schooled on Miranda:
HOLDER: You make the determination whether or not it is appropriate. Whether you think that giving Miranda warnings to that person is gonna stop the flow of information or whether the flow of information will continue. And you make the determination, in this particular case, is it more important for us to get intelligence from this person. Or is it more important for us to build the case? One of the things that we have certainly seen is that the giving of Miranda warnings has not stopped these terrorist suspects from talking to us. They have continued to talk even though we have given them Miranda warnings.
I really grow weary about this constantly coming up for discussion, when the media could just acknowledge that the anti-Miranda people do not have "an interesting point of view," they merely have a "stupid point of view."
Holder says Shahzad is probably going to be tried in civilian court. And at one time Holder said KSM would be given the same treatment. Gregory asks a semi-good question:
DAVID GREGORY: So, if he's acquitted, he would not be released. How is that consistent, Mr. Attorney General, with fairness and justice that you believe in of our system?
ERIC HOLDER: Well, he certainly would be provided fairness and justice with regard to the trial. That would occur. And with regard to the outcome of that trial, we have -- and if he were acquitted, what I was trying to say that there are other mechanisms that we have that we might employ. Immigration laws that we could use. The possibility of detaining him under the laws of war. There are a variety of things that we can do in order to protect the American People.
Again, KSM WILL NOT BE OPENING A BODEGA ON 59th STREET IF HE'S ACQUITTED. Now, in pursuant to the idea of "fairness" and "justice" -- why mightn't KSM be convicted? Well, maybe all the evidence is tainted, because we tortured him repeatedly! So, it's a good thing we did that!
Gregory's big concern is that the Justice Department is unpredictable and sometimes prosecutions fail. But that's life, David! He is basically doing something I HATE when journalists do: prosecute both sides of the issue. First he's concerned that a civilian trial WON'T BE FAIR ENOUGH. Now he's practically yelling at Holder about how the civilian justice system is TOO FAIR. It's a cheap way of ensuring that you always look like you've won a debate.
Anyway, the KSM trial is delayed. Gregory is confident that the trial doesn't belong in New York. He asks if the administration is overly politicizing the matter. Uhm, AREN'T THE PEOPLE WHO ARE AGAINST THE TRIAL THE ONES WHO ARE "POLITICIZING" IT.
Gregory does the argue both sides of the issue again. First, Holder is wrong to be playing a part in what I'll term "generically reasserting the traditional rule of law."
DAVID GREGORY: What is the holdup? Everybody seems to be saying this is a foregone conclusion. It's never going to New York. Why won't you say that it won't be there?
ERIC HOLDER: Well, we're taking a look at all of our options and trying to decide where the case can best be tried. There are federal statutes that we have to deal with that dictate where the case would have to occur, if we are gonna seek the death penalty, as I've indicated that we will. There are a variety of things that have to be taken into consideration. Both in addition to what I've talked about, we also have to take into account what the political leadership in these various jurisdictions want.
DAVID GREGORY: New York doesn't want it. New York doesn't have the resources for it. You just deployed all these F.B.I. agents to catch Shahzad. What if they had to protect a trial of K.S.M.? I mean, it's fairly clear that it doesn't belong in New York, according to elected officials and other law enforcement officials. And yet, there is this basically inaction on this issue of where the trial is. Is this being overly politicized by this Administration and by you?
To summarize Gregory: YOU ARE CRAZY TO WANT TO USE THE TRADITIONAL LEGAL PROCESSES.
On to the next one:
DAVID GREGORY: But critics, including more progressive liberal critics of this Administration and of you say, look, you said there was gonna be a civilian trial. You said you were gonna close down Guantanamo. You announced that there would be five military tribunals when you made the announcement about Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. What is the holdup? Gitmo is still open. There is no movement on military tribunals. And by the way, what happens if you capture operatives on the battlefield somewhere overseas? You have nowhere to put them.
ATTORNEY GENERAL ERIC HOLDER: Well, there are a variety of questions you put-- you pack a lot into that one question.
DAVID GREGORY: You can unpack it.
To summarize Gregory: YOU ARE CRAZY TO NOT BE FASTER IN USING THE TRADITIONAL LEGAL PROCESSES.
I mean, in the space of five minutes, Gregory goes from one end of the parabola to the other! Holder is either history's greatest monster for wanting to do things in a non-Bush administration way, or he's history's greatest monster for not wanting to do things in a non-Bush administration way HARD/FAST ENOUGH! Actually: I'm being too forgiving! Gregory's point of view is that Holder is BOTH OF THESE THINGS SIMULTANEOUSLY.
This is addled, cheap, brain-damaged journalism! EVERY WEEK WITH THIS SHIT, BY THE WAY! And I cannot, with words, describe the smug, shit-eating smirk on his face as he swings his idiot deck all over this new set.
Now they are talking about Arizona immigration law. Gregory asks STANDARD IMMIGRATION QUESTION. Holder provides STANDARD IMMIGRATION ANSWER. Gregory asks WITLESS FOLLOWUP VERSION 1.0. Hold parries WITLESS FOLLOWUP 1.0 with boilerplate response. The underwater robots secure 5,000 more gallons of oil for their Plot Against Humanity.
Now it is time for the Meet The Press Panel to perform "Meditations In An Emergency, If By 'Meditations' We Mean Cheap Ideas We Grabbed From A Cooler In Times Square Before The Bomb Squad Came," a farce in one act.
DAVID BROOKS, ruminant of middle-class anxiety
EJ DIONNE, pusher of the Washington Post to the left
DAVID GREGORY, a hair-farmer, merchant of wisps
KATTY KAY, commentator from Knifecrime Island
WES MOORE, of the Wes Moore Wes Moores
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL, a volcano from Iceland
an OIL SLICK, from the Gulf of Mexico
THE ROBOTS, you should welcome them now as your slavemaster
THE BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST, ever billowing/always watching
[LIGHTS UP ON THE SET OF TRON, WHICH FOR SOME REASON IS AT NBC NEWS NOW.]
GREGORY: OMGZ! ATTORNEY GENERAL HOLDER IS HISTORY'S GREATEST MONSTER!
BROOKS: We are at war! With the terrors. It's transborder. Our drones are winning though, but they are fighting back with American citizens.
THE ROBOTS: Yes. Trust in the drones, bleep blorp!
GREGORY: OMGZ! Is Pakistan helping at all?
MOORE: We're seeing more cooperation, but we need to remember that there are a lot of obscure tribal areas with very porous borders.
OIL SLICK: You know what else is porous? THIS HOLE IN THE EARTH WHERE KABILLIONS OF GALLONS OF OIL IS COMING OUT!
GREGORY: OMGZ! What does this portend for Pakistani Americans?
KAY: Well, we will screen them and the TSA will masturbate to their naked bodies. And then, blammo! More extremists!
DIONNE: That white lady from Pennsylvania wouldn't have been stopped by racial profiling. It's a battle between a muddled approach and demogoguery! It's a battle between car bombs and flying planes into buildings. Five more minutes of vapid historical perspective.
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: Oooh. Nobody told me we'd be belching clouds of ash into the air! I'm really good at that! Watch!
GREGORY: BUT OMGZ HOW DO YOU STOP BAD THINGS FROM HAPPENING? I want all bad things to stop happening forever.
BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST: That's pretty painfully naive.
BROOKS: These extremists are caught between two worlds: their world of corrupt extremism and our world of organically grown pine nuts. Anyway, STOP MIRANDIZING PEOPLE!
GREGORY: LAWYERS ARE THE WORST, CAN THEY BE KILLED?
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: [belches hot ash everywhere] LOOKIT! LOOKIT AT WHAT I CAN DO!
MOORE: One day, hopefully! For the time being, we have to be a nation of laws. Wait, what did I just say?
THE OIL SLICK: Two different things.
GREGORY: Karzai is coming, to America? Will there be a Tali-BOMB in his funny hat?
KAY: It's worrying, because Afghanistan is filled with violence, and while the Pakistanis are on board with fighting it to some extent...
BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST: Karzai really is a shit show, I know.
DIONNE: I hate the term lawyered up.
THE ROBOTS: DO NOT WORRY, SOON YOU WILL ALL BE ROBOTED UP. AS IN ROBOTS WILL BE CRAWLING UP YOUR DUODENUM, WITH PROBES. BLORP BEEP ROMNEY BLORP.
BROOKS: We have a tension between the rule of law and the need to just pound the brown terrorists with our fists, repeatedly. It's like the tension between the old-moneyed elites who used the New York Times to post news of their impending nuptial and the new-moneyed modernists who use Facebook to post pictures of themselves giving each other handjobs.
THE OIL SLICK: This conversation is getting very tedious. Someone should try shooting this panel at the hole in the earth, through which I am pouring.
GREGORY: OMGZ, A SUPREME COURT PICK! Will it be Kagan, or Garland, or Wood?
THE OIL SLICK: Kagan.
BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST: Kagan.
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: HOT ASH IS GOING EVERYWHERE.
THE ROBOTS: KAGAN. AS MIKE ALLEN HAS SAID. ONLY MIKE ALLEN WILL BE SPARED IN THE COMING ROBOT HOLOCAUST. MIKE ALLEN HAS PROMISED TO STAY UP LATE AND CONNECT TO THE ROBOTS WITH BROADBAND CONNECTIONS. WE WILL WEAPONIZE MIKE ALLEN AND HUMANITY WILL KNEEL BEFORE HIM. BLEEEP BLOOP!
GREGORY: OMGZ! Senator Bennett is going to not be America's best Senator of Utah!
BROOKS: I am outraged! I am very emotional over this.
THE ROBOTS: Your need for emotion will soon become irrelevant.
DIONNE: I agree! Also, things are weird on Knifecrime Island, did you see? Hung parliament.
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: They are angry there, and have had to wait in their airports, because of the ash.
KAY: I just came back from Kentucky, where I interviewed Rand Paul.
BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST: I sort of wish it was EJ talking about Kentucky and Kay talking about the hung Parliament on Knifecrime Island.
THE OIL SLICK: You're so hidebound! It's good that someone like Kay is curious about that race. It's very interesting.
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: Guys, be quiet! I totally want to hear David Brooks offer up another elegy for the working folks and how terribly taxed they are.
THE ROBOTS: Why? DOES NOT COMPUTE. The Brooks unit talks of nothing else.
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: I know, but I need to know how many metric tons of hot ash I have to produce to keep up with him.
BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST: Just go with "all the hot ash."
THE ROBOTS: ALL WILL BE KILLED, REGARDLESS OF THE VALUE OF THEIR POP-SOCIAL ANTHROPOLOGY NOVELS.
THE OIL SLICK: Shut up guys! They are talking about me now!
GREGORY: OMGZ! The Oil slick, y'alls!
DIONNE: People want the government to go away, until there is a big oil slick, and then everyone wants the government to help. Same thing with that coal mining disaster.
OIL SLICK: That wasn't my fault!
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: I loved the coal dust, because I am a fan of ash and soot. But that wasn't my fault either.
BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST: Yes, that happened because Don Blankenship is one of the nation's biggest and most corrupt bastards.
THE ROBOTS: BLANKENSHIP WILL PERISH IN THE FIRST WAVE OF THE ROBOT SLAUGHTER.
GREGORY: OMGZ! The Knifecrime Island situation.
KAY: One of the takeaways is that no one was very interested in the third party. Even though there was a lot of hype.
BLACK SMOKE MONSTER FROM LOST: Ha, except for Mark Penn! He thought that Cleggmania was going to sweep across America!
THE OIL SLICK: Ha! Know what's going to sweep across America? MILLIONS OF GALLONS OF OIL!
EYJAFJALLAJOKULL: Did you know that 64% of all the hot ash I am sending into the sky are remaindered copies of "Microtrends?" That guy really is a useless asshole.
THE OIL SLICK: If they shot him at my hole to try to plug it up, it would probably succeed. And I'd still consider it a net win.
THE ROBOTS: THE ONE YOU CALL MARK PENN WILL BE SUBJECTED TO A BRUTAL PERIOD OF MOCKING BY THE MACHINES. HIS STUPIDITY WILL PROVIDE US WITH THE MORALE WE NEED TO BEGIN THE CLEANSING. BLEEP!
And that's it for today. Ironically enough, after inveighing at length against the robots and the coming doom they portend, I shall now go forth to watch IRON MAN 2: THE SECOND MOVIE ABOUT THE IRON MAN. Which sort of goes to show that no matter how long you stare at the teevee on Sunday mornings, you will never learn a blessed thing! Have a good week everyone. CALL YOUR MOM SO I DON'T HAVE TO.
[Thanks, if you want to take a minute to read something else, I recommend this important Oral History Of This Week's Stock Market Crash.]