Sure, Rosie O'Donnell's a 9-11 conspiracy nut. But she's also a big-time liberal and ardent Republican critic. That makes her our 9-11 conspiracy nut. So let's literally [see screencap] turn the page on her lunacy.
That seemed to be Mika Brzezinski's operative logic on today's "Morning Joe." During the opening 6 AM schmoozefest, talk turned to the confrontation between Rosie and an "O'Reilly Factor" staffer [identified by NewsBuster Ian Schwartz as likely being producer Jesse Watters] that recently occured at an O'Donnell book-signing. Rosie had apparently declined to return phone calls from the "Factor" inviting her on, so Bill dispatched a producer to offer the invitation in person. "Morning Joe" rolled a clip of the incident in which the "Factor" producer invited Rosie to recant her 9-11 conspiracy theory.
View video here.
O'REILLY FACTOR PRODUCER: [O'Reilly] wants to know if you regret saying that 9-11 was an inside job.
ROSIE O'DONNELL: I didn't say that. He's quoting the wrong people.
Back in the studio, panelist Willie Geist begged to differ.
WILLIE GEIST: I watched that last night, I went and looked around a little bit. There's a clip, which we'll probably have later in the show, on the View, where she outlines exactly why Building 7 of the World Trade Center was, quote, "an inside job."
Mika chimed in to concur.
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Yah, I remember that.
JOE SCARBOROUGH: An inside job. She said people were running out of the building burning before the planes hit the towers.
GEIST: That's correct. She's not saying it's the U.S. government, she's not saying it's President Bush. Someone. It was an inside job. Someone.
It was at that point that Mika began lobbying to moveon.org. "Alright," she sighed impatiently.
GEIST: She doesn't know who.
SCARBOROUGH [NOTE: SPEAKING STRICTLY FOR PURPOSES OF MOCKING THE NOTION]: Maybe the Jews, right?
That's when Mika literally, as shown here, and figuratively, by her words, tried to turn the page.
BRZEZINSKI: Turn the page.
SCARBOROUGH: Because we've heard that too.
GEIST [ALSO SPEAKING MOCKINGLY OF THE NOTION]: They were called the night before.
SCARBOROUGH: All the Jews, they had a meeting the night before. They all left town.
GEIST: That's right.
SCARBOROUGH: And I still have people [come up to me] on the streets of New York saying "you can always tell when the next attack's coming because the Orthodox Jews are leaving town."
Mika can be heard in the background emitting a long, exasperated sigh.
GEIST: It's unbelievable.
SCARBOROUGH: It's frightening. These conspiracy theories are very frightening.
GEIST: She says, her argument is, it's the first time in history that fire has melted steel. There's an entire book --
Uh-oh. Rosie being seriously debunked. Again Mika tries to cut the discussion short.
BRZEZINSKI: Let's not [unintelligible] too much time --
GEIST: I'll get her a subscription to Popular Mechanics. There's an entire book by the staff, the editorial board of Popular Mechanics that says why that actually is possible.
SCARBOROUGH: Actually --
BRZEZINSKI: O-K [as in, "O-K, moving right along."]
SCARBOROUGH: Medieval blacksmiths could tell you . . . that fire melts steel.
Note that Mika's objection wasn't that Willie and Joe were wrong about Rosie. Mika wanted to move on precisely because, as she acknowledged, the pair were right. Mika gave it the old Williams College try, but couldn't stop the guys from making the case that leading liberal light Rosie O'Donnell is, in strictly technical terms, a 9-11 nut.
Update | 10-30 1:22 PM: Rosie has linked to this column at her blog, but is not permitting comments.