"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Booth Luce
So consumed is NBC with animosity toward President Bush and VP Cheney that there is virtually no good thing that it cannot spin into a negative. Take these bookend moments from this morning's "Today." In the course of a segment she narrated on the fallout from the Libby verdict for VP Cheney, Andrea Mitchell mentioned that "Cheney says his value to the president is that he has no political ambition for himself." She then ran a clip of the Veep saying "I'm not worried about what the folks in Iowa are going to say in the caucuses of January of next year. I'm here to do a job, and that is to call 'em as I see 'em."
You might think there's no way the offering of principled advice devoid of personal political ambition could be spun into a negative. Come on, you're not thinking creatively enough. Andrea found an angle: "But others say that is also a weakness, making Cheney . . . less sensitive to the political fallout from his own advice." On that theory, I suppose Mitchell will be counseling Hillary to ignore Bill's advice, since, like Cheney, he's not running either.
View video here.
Later, Meredith Vieira interviewed Tim Russert. After lots of avid speculation as to whether the Veep might be forced out, talk turned to the 2008 presidential election. Meredith asked Tim to explain poll numbers showing that a large proportion of Americans are paying close attention to the coming presidential election.
Russert: "I think it in part is because of a lot of dissatisfaction with President Bush's performance."
That's right: Americans care about the future of their country -- and it's George Bush's fault.
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