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Just When You Thought Infotainment Press Couldn’t Sink Lower Than Britney Panty Watch…

…they do. Glenn has the run-down on ABC’s Brian Ross’ putrid, prurient titilation of the blue dress stain variety.  Then, I woke up to this from the NYTimes:

Between 7:25 p.m. and 7:50 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 21, 1998, the day the Lewinsky scandal exploded into public view, Mrs. Clinton departed the White House for an undisclosed location for discussions with people whose names are redacted from her schedule.

The following day, Mrs. Clinton held a 30-minute “private meeting” at the White House. The participants’ identities are removed from the schedule.

When Mr. Clinton admitted the affair to the nation on Aug. 17, 1998, that day on Mrs. Clinton’s calendar says simply, “No Public Schedule.” The following day, when Mr. and Mrs. Clinton, and their daughter, Chelsea, left the White House for a scheduled vacation on Martha’s Vineyard, the schedule reflects that trip at a time “TBD,” to be determined. No other events or meetings are listed on that day.

What?!? We don’t get the background chatter that she made Bill sleep on the sofa in the private residence for months afterward? Or that she used Kleenex tissues to dry her copious tears or that she sought solace with a pint of Ben and Jerry’s Chubby Hubby? Come on! What in the hell is wrong with these people — this occurred years ago and is none of our business. It wasn’t our business back then, and it sure as hell isn’t our business years later.

This is not news. It is a distraction. From what, you ask? For starters, the fact that John McCain can’t tell the two major branches of Islam apart, and has managed in one "foreign policy" trip to enrage the Palestinians and insult the Jews by equating Purim with Halloween, in a "goodwill tour" masquerading as a transparent bid to court American Jews in the delegate-rich states of NY, NJ and FL.

And quite a reversal from past McCain statements that the press has studiously avoided mentioning in its reportage.

…"I would expect concessions and sacrifices by both sides."… 

When I interviewed McCain last month, I asked him about the interview. Did his readiness to send Scowcroft and Baker as his negotiators with the Israelis signify a different kind of approach than the more neoconservative one he had been associated with? "I respect and admire all of those people and their knowledge and background," he said. "They don’t make the issues. The president does." And, McCain added, "What I was saying was that I would appoint someone to go to the region who was well regarded: Scowcroft, Baker, Kissinger, George Mitchell, Tony Zinni, Bill Kristol, Randy Scheunemann. I can give you a list of 50 names of people who would qualify and go over there and make a good assessment of the situation to get the process started."

Clearly vexed, McCain turned his attention to the reporter. "So let me just say one thing about this reporter. I was walking through a crowd of people at Verkunde, and this reporter trails behind me and we had a very offhand conversation. He said, ‘like ’67 borders,’ and I didn’t know what he was talking about, and he had a tape recorder, so I would be very careful about assuming anything."… (emphasis mine)

Let’s contemplate that McCain didn’t know what a reporter meant by the ’67 borders in Israel — in 2006 — or his attempt to tap dance around his signaled shift to a new policy stance toward Israel having to make concessions for peace, and then his back-pedal from it when neocons and wingnuts raised hell.  And add in the recent embarrassing failure to comprehend the difference between Iran or Iraq training Al Qaeda, and begin to see the need for some in-depth, probing foreign policy questions that are not being asked of McCain by the press.

He’d send Bill f-ing Kristol to negotiate a peace settlement between Israel and the Palestinians? Is he utterly daft?!? Or just a ginormous press suck-up?

A back and forth and back again on a major point of foreign policy contention is still news, isn’t it? Only if it’s a Democrat, otherwise it is sweep it under the rug time.  Would you like more pudding and pie?

(YouTube of The Who, performing "Won’t Get Fooled Again" live.)

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com