Buried somewhere in the hundreds of pounds of old vinyl I sold off last year, this is this bit where Bill Cosby gets the great Ray Charles to work for him. After the show, Cos runs Ray's check up to his hotel room and finds everything pitch dark.
"Where are you, Ray?" Cosby asks.
"I'm in the bathroom," Ray replies. "Shaving."
Cos sets up what happens next:
Have you ever been in a position where you were saying something and you knew that it was dumb? What you were saying was totally, without question, just dumb. And, as you got halfway through it, your brain said, "Dumb, dumb, dumb!" But your mouth just kept rattling it off, so you finished it? Well, that's what this little thing is about...
That bit jumped immediately to mind when Meet the Press spokesmodel David Gregory lapsed into some kind of 2005 fugue state and, completely unprompted by any external forces other than his contractual obligation to "But The Democrats!" every single fucking thing anything nutso that any Republican does, chose to fling himself into the middle of the conversation by opining that, well, sure chemical weapons are bad and all,. but
David Gregory: I remember how Democrats went after the Bush administration...
...for raising the specter of weapons of mass destruction being used against our own troops to make a case for war...
And at that moment it seemed to me that the tiniest flare of "Ruh Roh" perturbed Mr. Gregory's simian countenance. As if it suddenly dawned on him that what was burbling out of his mouth was 100% Beltway Reflex Centrist ass juice, but he just couldn't t find the fucking "Off" switch to close his pundit-hole.
Quick! Hit the Pundit UnDo button and hope no one notices that I just tried to beat up on the Dirty Hippies for being right about Iraq!
David Gregory: That never happened because there were no W.M.D.'s there...
And I had a hearty laugh at how effectively our highly-recompensed pundit-class has smothered anything that even faintly resembles grownup conversation. Laughed...but was that inherently more humorous than, say, Chuck Todd calling Peter King a "Northeastern Moderate Republican"?
Or Newt Gingrich opining:
I think Peggy Noonan capture a good bit of this in her column this week...?
(Which, if you play it backwards, comes out as "I buried Cronkite")
Or, for that matter, was it objectively more funny than David Gregory asking any question of Newt Gingrich other than, "So, Newt Gingrich, why should you ever be allowed anywhere near any broadcast medium more powerful than a Mr. Microphone ever again?"
The relative ranking of modern-day pundits according to their place on the terabuffoon scale is a question that that future generations of cockroaches and zombies will undoubtedly squabble over for years. On the other hand, today's David Brooks' Prize For The Casual Mutilation of Recent History undoubtedly belongs to...Mr. David Gregory!
Way to go, Fluffy; you're just racking 'em up!
David Gregory: Part of the legacy of the Iraq War is that the Bush Administration failed to anticipate what could go wrong.
No, No, and Hell no.
There were hundreds of seasoned, civil service professionals who had worked for years spending hundreds of thousands of man-hours carefully gaming out every likely contingency of an American conquest and occupation of Iraq. They produced "board feet" of planning documents covering in some detail how an American occupation force should handle everything from keeping the lights on and the water kept flowing, to public education to the disposition of the vast and well-armed Iraqi army.
And virtually every single piece of that advice was systematically ignored by the Neocon clowns who were running the asylum:
Charles Pierce wanders further down that teevee dial to see what CBS's Conventional Wisdom Convention has on-offer:
I think the lesson of Iraq is not "avoid getting involved" but, rather, "Toss Bill Kristol out a window when he starts talking about foreign policy," but that's just me. Otherwise, watching Kristol wander through the Sorrowful Mysteries on the way to yet some more Middle East bloodletting is of vast entertainment value. Bob Woodward, on the other hand, that chocolate fountain of anonymous conventional wisdom. chalks it up to how, on the other hand, they both do it.