Sunday, January 16, 2005

Sunday Morning Talk Shows

I'm watching Meet the Press this morning and getting mighty pissed off. Dan Bartlett is on and there is something about him that I just don't like. I literally despise the man, an inordinate amount for a Republican, but I'm not sure why. I think it is mostly because he really sucks at being the White House Communications Director. I could do a better job and I don't even like Bush. Anyway, he's giving the usual White House talking points on a lot of issues, but I think he may have "misspoken" (read lied) on several issues, including WMDs and Social Security. I'm going to have to do a lot of researching and conferring with my blogger colleagues, but here are my best guesses. Keep in mind this is just what I've watched, I'll have to get a transcript to make direct quotations.

  • Bartlett said that both the Kay Report and the Duelfer Report stated that Saddam had gotten rid of his stockpiles of WMD, but retained his capacity to produce them at a moment's notice. It's been a while since I've read either report, but I do remember seeing Kay's testimony to Congress on C-SPAN not one year ago where he talked about the dual-use capabilities of Iraq. I seem to remember hearing that his capabilities were greatly degraded and that most of his WMD programs were far behind the moment's notice benchmark.
  • He also said, when asked about Social Security, that if we were to remove the cap on payroll taxes altogether, it would only be enough for 4 years of solvency. I'm going to have to look over the math myself, but John Rother, AARP's legislative director and point-man on SS has said that raising the cap from $87,900 to $147,000 to cover 90% of incomes would alleviate the long-term projected shortfall by 40%. It seems to me they can't both be right, and I'm more inclined to agree with Mr. Rother since the rest of the rhetoric coming from te White House has been so grossly inaccurate and misleading.
Like I said, I'm going to have to get a transcript (or make one for myself since I'm recording it) to make direct quotations and I'm definitely going to have to research those assertions, but I think Dan Bartlett has once again gone so far off the limb as to endanger his boss. It's a wonder he still has a job. He's the Communiations Director, he should know better than to do these sorts of things. Updates on this later.

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