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    Olbermann Watch, "persecuting" Keith since 2004


    July 18, 2006
    COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN - JULY 18, 2006

    "COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00 P.M.-9:00 P.M. ET)

    Host: Keith Olbermann

    Topics/Guests:

    • KOFI ANNAN CONTINUES TO PUSH A MULTI-NATIONAL PEACEKEEPING FORCE: Richard Wolffe, Newsweek
    • WAR IN THE MIDEAST AND THE NEO-CON OPPORTUNITY: Lawrence Korb, former assistant secretary of defense under Pres. Reagan and senior fellow for the Center for American Progress
    • PRES. BUSH BLOCKS NSA PROBE: Pete Williams, NBC justice correspondent

    Always eager to find some sort of partisan spin in any story, Keith Olbermann bellowed in his opening spiel:

    Are the neo-cons drooling? Is this seen as an opportunity to make American political hay out of Middle East reality chaos?

    Well, does Olby see this as an opportunity to make partisan hay out of Israel's war on terror? Apparently so. The Hour of Spin began with some taped reports from NBC, plus an actual, real, live person in Beirut reporting on the waiver of evacuation fees. (Oops, there goes one of the evening's planned spin points.)

    After just one commercial break, substantive war coverage gave way to the "political impact" of it all. The Wolffe Man said the President wants to make this "look like a UN operation". KO was ready with the snark:

    What a difference three years and 600 miles can make.

    And of course the patented Olby leading question, with the obligatory slant making everything somehow bad for Bush:

    Should it want to intervene at some point, has the administration squandered any of its leverage in this region? Has Iraq made it less likely that Israel's neighbors would accept some sort of deal brokered by the US?

    KO skipped oddball to report on various other stories, including the stem cell controversy (calling the embrios "clusters of cells"). Then a plug for the #3 story, where Olby said "neo-cons" want the US to join the war and attack Syria and Iran.

    "The neo-cons back in business", headlined Olby, referring to "their failed policy". Whom does he cite as calling for the US to join in the war? James Woolsey--Bill Clinton's CIA Director! Um, Mr Olbermann, Woolsey is not a neo-con. He's not an anything con. He's a Democrat. Then he cites Secretary of State Rice, who never made any such proposal. Finally, he cites Bill Kristol, and knowing he has nothing to show he ever made any such proposal either, he runs a clip from Fox News Sunday where Kristol says Israel is in fact "fighting four of our five enemies", and then has Juan Williams replying to Kristol:

    You just want war, war, war. And you want us in more war. You wanted us in Iraq, now you wanted us in Iran, now you want us to get into the Middle East...

    Get this: KO uses a clip from someone who is characterizing what Kristol says--not Kristol's words, but the words of someone who disagrees with Kristol. The shabbiest of evidence, and the tawdriest kind of propaganda. Kristol has, in fact, stated that the US should stand behind Israel, but has never suggested that we should join in the war.

    Oh, and Keith? Do you even know what a "neo-conservative" is? Not only is Woolsey (the only person who actually advocated what you were talking about) not a neo-con--neither is Bill Kristol. And neither is Condoleeza Rice. But hey, what do facts matter to the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann?

    The evening's designated spinner, Larry Korb, was there to answer Keith's questions about "fulminating" by those dastardly neo-cons. Korb took shots at Cheney and the Iraq war ("false pretenses"). Then another Olby Leading Question. Citing Woolsey and Kristol, tossing in Gingrich for good measure, KO asked:

    Are not these and other people who are involved in this point of view the same folks who told us that Iraq was going to be a cakewalk, and do they have remaining credibility?

    Korb's shocking response: "No. They have no credibility." He went on to complain that Rice is delaying her trip over there and should try to get a cease-fire. Screw the hostages; let 'em rot. Korb knows better how to effect the return of Israeli hostages than Israel does. Not once but twice Korb was described by Olby as having been with "the Reagan administration". But for Carter James Woolsey was Undersecretary of the Navy, and we know he ran the CIA for B.J. Clinton. So why did KO twice mention Korb's Reagan connection, and ignore Woolsey's more substantial Democrat background?

    The spin continued as Krazy Keith tried to make big news out of old news. He screeched about how this revelation was deliberately timed for today because there was a war on. Unfortunately, this "revelation" came from the Attorney General in previous scheduled testimony at a previously scheduled committee hearing. So how could this have been deliberately timed? Don't try to make sense out of it. It's OlbyLogic.

    The revelation? Justice Department lawyers didn't get clearance to investigate the NSA surveillance program. Did we mention that it's old news? You'd think Olby would remember, because he made such a big deal about it two months ago:

    the Bush Justice Department dropped the domestic spying investigation, because the investigators were denied security clearances.

    Pete Williams was there to explain the story. The White House wouldn't give Office of Professional Responsibility the top-secret clearances needed to have access to the program. (Um, that's what top-secret is all about.) Of course, Olby is ready with another loaded question:

    Do you think additional questions are going to be raised now about whether the President had authority to block that internal investigation by justice...?

    That of course is a pure propaganda question. Does anyone in their right mind believe the President doesn't have "authority" over security clearances? Of course not.

    With a #1 segment all about Oprah Winfrey, that leaves the Media Matters Minute. Tonight's victims included "the insane" Michael Savage (runner-up), and "worst person": "the Coultergeist". This is already so tired and lame, but apparently, after going over the 100 mark with Mr Bill, comedian Keith Olbermann has found a new bete noir.


    Posted by johnny dollar | Permalink | Comments (53) | | View blog reactions

    53 Comments

    "The Hour of Spin approaches"

    Indeed it does! I can't wait to read the Republican spin you guys write.

    Interesting summary.

    As usual, I skipped Olbermann tonight. However, it is quite remarkable that a conflict started by Hezbollah and Hamas leads Olbermann to an hour full of criticism of the United States. Did Keith take the time to at least mention that this conflict is not a neocon conspiracy, but rather an offensive by proxy forces for Iran and Syria against Israel? I guess that part is all irrelevant, as Olby subscribes to the Bushocentric theory, in which every world event is traced to one Texan living in the White House.

    Olby should play the game "six degrees of Bush" every night, in which every event in the world is dumped on Bushes head in six steps or less.

    Say "Coultergeist" and hear Keith tee-hee
    That's sad. How old is he? Three?
    He's mean and he's vile
    His humor infantile
    The laughing stock of cable TV

    Not a doubt that Ann Coulter will find many opportunities to remind Keith of his place.

    KFK, interesting turn of phrase. "(O)ffensive by proxy forces for Iran and Syria against Israel." That just happens to be pretty much the cover of The Weekly Standard, which just happened to be on screen when KO started his rant against the "neo-con bible (Weekly Standard) and its prophet, Bill Kristol," claiming Kristol is calling for us to join the war in Isreal (see J$'s summary on that.) But of course, to KO, that "proxy war" claim is just an excuse for the neo-cons to try to "resurrect" their "failed policies," not an actual fact, like most the rest of the world understands.

    Not a doubt that Ann Coulter will find many opportunities to remind Keith of his place.

    I'm sorry, but this time Ann Coulter has crossed the line.

    If she did send the letter to the Times, then she should be arrested for making a terrorist threat.

    If she did not and was only "joking", she should be condemned for using a real and serious threat as an inappropriate venue for her "humor". It wasn't funny in 2001 when real anthrax killed five people and sickened seventeen others, and hoaxes like this are not funny at all.

    Looks to me like she was advocating the method of execution she would want to see, AFTER a conviction of treason.

    "Rich's evidence of the brutal crackdown on the press was the statement of San Francisco radio host Melanie Morgan — who, by the way, is part of the press — proposing the gas chamber for the editor of the Times if he were found guilty of treason, which happens to be the punishment prescribed by law. (Once again Frank Rich finds himself in over his head when not writing about gay cowboy movies.)

    I prefer a firing squad, but I'm open to a debate on the method of execution. A conviction for treason would be assured under any sensible legal system. "

    Miss Odorman's "understanding" of "evidence" is like Tim Russert's "understanding" of "evidence", i.e., if the New York Times or other useful idiots make an allegation then that is "evidence" of something.

    As far as Lawrence Korb, he's a leftist kook. The Washington press corps loves that fool because his presence allows them to say that he is a "former Reagan adminstration official" and thus gives them a chance to portray him as something he isn't, i.e, a Republican. Having Korb speak gives them cover to disguise him and to use him to say what they actually think. They tried that with Anita Hill whom they attempted to portray as a "conservative Republican" rather than the militant leftist that she is. That trick no doubt worked on Miss Odorman and many other fools.

    * NY Times stock at 5 year low - 22 1/2
    * Rather disgraced and gone, groveling on Larry King
    * Olbermann on primtime on a once respected News org
    * Schieffer on his way out
    * Cohen from Wash Post indicating Israel was a
    mistake
    * Coulter's book a best seller
    * MSNBC now competing with E network
    * Aaron Brown done
    * Rita Cosby done
    * NY Times another round of layoffs
    * Helen Thomas laughed at by Tony Snow
    * Easily predictable stories about evacuations from Lebanon
    * Easily predictable stories about Bush's fault with Israel/Lebanon
    * Olbermann - the man of the venom filled e-mails
    * Dean, Milbanks, Finesman, Schuster, O'Donnell - our new found political experts
    * Andrea Mitchell - said anything pro bush i 86 years?? but shaking in her boots at the Arafat funeral
    * MSNBC in total chaos - Scarborough, an attorney and a former congressman, doing tabloid news
    * MSNBC doing a "Tonya" on all the other successful and competent cable news folks.
    * Limbaugh's Viagra getting 40xs more airplay than a Congressman's (Kennedy)substance abuse problems and 3:00 am
    * Dem pal in pocket Mr Blowdry Wilson, books, articles, financial windfall from "great hardship"
    * Hundreds of hours of coverage above the non event Rove "indictment"

    Fun to watch

    I particularly liked the 3-part series on "Today" with Kitty Kelly and her smear book of Bush - with all anonymous sources. When has Today ever given an author 3 straight days on the air?

    NBC is the cable news tabloid
    Stuck to the bottom like a hemorrhoid
    Since when did the news
    Include Britney and Cruise?
    And a cable news host that's a schizoid?

    CC:
    You gotta add the coming "reinvention" of the broadcast network evening news program starring Ms. Kitty Colonic. She doesn't just to want be an overpaid and overhyped TelePrompTer reader, she wants to be "solution-oriented." Wowie-wow-wow-wow! Solve the world Katie!

    See B.S. indeed.

    Why didn't they just hire Oprah, since she is seen as some sort of ersatz deity in some quarters of our warped pop-culture. (I know, I know, Oprah uses freshly minted bills as Charmin and probably flushes as much as they're paying Couric per, um, sitting)

    This train wreck is just getting started.

    "NBC is the cable news... And a cable news host that's a schizoid"

    Maybe one of your best. So now - if I have this right, Opie is (goes without saying) THE premier sports journalist/reporter and authority on all things sports

    Opie is also an expert Emeritus on all things political (well - all things anti Bush/conserv)

    And nooowww has - apparently while taking a crash course in Hollywood entertainment - a top shelf gossip reporter, ala the Post's page 6.

    Where else can you find the talents of Kitty Kelly, Michael Moore, Teddy Kennedy (chick cruising, profanity), Jim Gray and Rona Barrett all rolled into one.

    MSNBC certainly has the best of the best


    Heard Blanco and Nagin going over to help with the Lebanon evacuation.

    >not a neo-con--neither is Bill Kristol


    Uhh, yeah he is.

    >not a neo-con--neither is Bill Kristol


    Uhh, yeah he is.

    Wow! I love the Republican spin from this site.

    Bill Kristol IS a neo-con.

    He is? I don't get it. Horowitz is a neo-con. Krauthammer I'd say yes. But Kristol? As far as I can see, he's never been anything but a conservative, since his days rooming in college with Alan Keyes.

    I prefer a strict definition of the term, with a neo-con someone who has moved from the left to the right, rather than someone who has always been on the right.

    Go Olby!

    J$,

    I don't know what that there is a "strict" definition of the term but if you define it as a liberal, socialist or Democrat that has moved to the right and now identifies themselves as a conservative (e.g. David Horowitz) then Bill Kristol is NOT a neo-con. We are talking, for the part, about liberal Jews who moved to the right, initially on foreign policy differences with their former fellow libs.

    If you define neo-con as a hawkish, anti-communist, pro-Israel, pro-Arab democracy (as it benefits Israel) political ideology - which I do - then I'd say Kristol IS a neo-con. As his father is the FOUNDER of the neo-con movement and the son shares the father's political philosophy it seems like a stretch not call Bill Kristol a neo-con.

    That said, neo-cons rarely call themselves neo-cons and the term is mostly meant as a pejorative term.

    Bottom line, I don't think there is a "right" answer but, for me, I'd place Kristol in the neo-con camp.


    "I prefer a strict definition of the term, with a neo-con someone who has moved from the left to the right, rather than someone who has always been on the right."

    I think that may have been the original definition but it has evolved and is generally used to describe anyone associated with PNAC which Kristol is.


    I was always under the impression that necons were foreign policy "realists". Essentially, the “international community” is a fiction. The world is best understood realizing that states act in their own best interest not in some sort of global utopian interest. Yada Yada Yada. I think Kristol falls in this category.

    Wow -
    O'Reilly 2,576 viewers yesterday
    Zahn - 1,095
    Grace - 430
    Opie - 477

    In a quest for hard news, re the Middle East - people actually tuning out Opie and NBC

    NBC news faaaiiiillliiiinnnnggg. A choice of CNN, Fox, Court TV and NBC "News" - and NBC "News" barely beats Court TV. Probably now 2/3 rds of Opie's "fans" tuning in just for his terrific Hollwywood (Cruise, Brittany, Oprah) reporting. Could see Opie going to a sports and Hollywood Meltdown hour. If so, the world will be worse off with out Opie's political, non biased, oft accurate, commentary. Like the Hindenberg (sp?) - oh the loss to humanity

    Here is what "neocon" Kristol said.

    Look, our coddling of Iran — if I can use the neutral term like that — over the last six to nine months has emboldened them. I mean, is Iran behaving like a timid regime that’s very worried about the U.S.? Or is Iran behaving recklessly and in a foolhardy way?


    WALLACE: But isn’t that the result of what’s happened in Iraq?

    KRISTOL: No, it’s a result of our deducing from the situation in Iraq that we can’t stand up to Iran. I mean, when we stand up over and over and say Iran is shipping Improvised Explosive Devices into Iraq and killing U.S. soldiers, and Syria’s providing a line for terrorists to come into Iraq and kill U.S. soldiers, and that’s unacceptable. That’s not helpful. And then we do nothing about it. When Ahmadinejad says provocative things, continues to ship arms to Hezbollah, and we say, okay, maybe now we’ll give you direct talks. That, unfortunately, that weakness has been provocative. Ahmadinejad feels emboldened. Now we need to show him, and I think the administration has done a good job the last couple of days of showing him, that he miscalculated.

    And indeed, this is a great opportunity. I think our weakness, unfortunately, invited this aggression, but this aggression is a great opportunity to begin resuming the offensive against the terrorist groups. Israel is fighting four of our five enemies in the Middle East, in a sense. Iran, Syria, sponsors of terror; Hezbollah and Hamas. Al Qaeda doesn’t seem to be involved. We have to take care of them in Iraq. This is an opportunity to begin to reverse the unfortunate direction of the last six to nine months and get the terrorists and the jihadists back on the defensive.

    >And of course the patented Olby leading >question, with the obligatory slant making >everything somehow bad for Bush:

    >>Should it want to intervene at some point, has >>the administration squandered any of its >>leverage in this region? Has Iraq made it less >>likely that Israel's neighbors would accept >>some sort of deal brokered by the US?

    What he should have said was.

    Should we want to intervene at some point shouldn't be expect the lebanese to greet us as liberators? and don't you think, given the goodwill genrated by our invasion of iraq that the arabs in region will sit up and take an offer from the U.S. as a blessing from Allah?

    Or maybe this:

    Should we want to intervene at some point shouldn't be expect the media to continue to overlook our successes? and don't you think, given the lack of goodwill genrated by the blame America first liberals that the efforts of our troops in the region will be hampered and demoralized ?

    "Should we want to intervene at some point shouldn't be expect the media to continue to overlook our successes?"

    Like, what exactly?

    "don't you think, given the lack of goodwill genrated by the blame America first liberals that the efforts of our troops in the region will be hampered and demoralized ?"

    I'd say iraq is happening and demoralizing the troops just fine.


    "don't you think, given the lack of goodwill genrated by the blame America first liberals that the efforts of our troops in the region will be hampered and demoralized ?"

    I'd say iraq is hampering and demoralizing the troops just fine.


    "Kristol claimed the people of Iran would embrace “the right use of targeted military force.” He added that military force could “trigger changes in Iran,” causing them to embrace regime change"

    "Kristol claimed the people of Iran would embrace “the right use of targeted military force.” He added that military force could “trigger changes in Iran,” causing them to embrace regime change"

    'Should we want to intervene at some point shouldn't be expect the media to continue to overlook our successes?'

    "Like, what exactly?"

    Among others:

    Sadaam the butcher is out of the business of executing, torturing and raping thousands and thousands of innocent people.

    Libya has given up its arsenal as a result of of our invasion.

    Saddam can no longer offer aid and comfort to terrorists who were using his training facilities

    Sadaam can no longer offer cash rewards to the widows of suicide bombers

    "Sadaam the butcher is out of the business of executing, torturing and raping thousands and thousands of innocent people"

    and more people are dying every year than when he was in power so it's not like the people are better off now.

    "Libya has given up its arsenal as a result of of our invasion"

    Libya started making overtures after 9-11. not as a result of the invasion and iran has spead up its nue program.

    "Saddam can no longer offer aid and comfort to terrorists who were using his training facilities"

    No need to recruit them anymore the are volunterering in droves.

    "Sadaam can no longer offer cash rewards to the widows of suicide bombers"

    That's true someone else has to do that.

    'Sadaam the butcher is out of the business of executing, torturing and raping thousands and thousands of innocent people'

    "and more people are dying every year than when he was in power so it's not like the people are better off now"

    Cite a reliable, authoritative source to back this up (excludes frauds like media matters, kos and crooks and liars)

    'Libya has given up its arsenal as a result of of our invasion'

    "Libya started making overtures after 9-11. not as a result of the invasion"

    Cite a reliable, authoritative source to back this up (excludes frauds like media matters, kos and crooks and liars).

    You conceded the remainder of my argument, so unless you can back up the other claims you make, you are wasting my time.


    Cite a reliable, authoritative source to back this up (excludes frauds like media matters, kos and crooks and liars)

    http://www.juancole.com/2005/06/12000-dead-in-iraqi-guerrilla-war-rate.html

    http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0317-20.htm

    Why is meda matters a fraud? because you say so. please give some documentation.

    "Cite a reliable, authoritative source to back this up (excludes frauds like media matters, kos and crooks and liars)."

    Your the one that made the claim that our invasion of iraq prompted libya to come around. Please cite something other than a red-blog that demonstrates this. the burden of proof is on you.

    Oh here is link for my claim. No it is your turn.

    http://www.newsmax.com/archives/ic/2006/4/6/123834.shtml

    That is from a red blog by the way. notice how it is after 9-11 that Libya fell in line. So feel free to shup the fuck up.

    "You conceded the remainder of my argument, so unless you can back up the other claims you make, you are wasting my time. "

    No I didn't dumbass re-read the post as usual you misunderstood it Patrick.


    Cite a reliable, authoritative source to back this up (excludes frauds like media matters, kos and crooks and liars)

    Maybe you should cite something for one of your claims.

    This poor boy got his ass whooped!

    "You conceded the remainder of my argument, so unless you can back up the other claims you make, you are wasting my time"

    http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/07/18/dobbs.july19/index.html

    A commentary from that damn Hezbollah supporter Lou Dobbs.

    He should be shot for non emphasizing the good we ahve done in the region

    Anon claims that more Iraquis are being killed today are than were under Sadaam. His cites for these claims are from two leftist propagandists as I expected. The cite to the common dreams link says nothing whatsoever about comparing the number of deaths under Sadaam versus the number of deaths of iraquis today-- so much for that.

    The juan cole cite purports that 12,00 Iraquis have been killed since Sadaam was ousted and the invasion began. Even if these figures are true, they pale in comparison to the barbarism of Sadaam.

    A report from the U.S. War Crimes Ambassdor documents that 30,000 to 60,000 Iraquis were killed between March and April, 1991 alone (yes, Sadaam was in control of Iraq and ordered every one of these killings). This is just the tip of the iceberg. Read the rest of this report to educate yourself about the breadth of Hussein's atocities before you defend this butcher, you dumbbass. Unlike you, I don't cite foaming at the mouth America haters.

    http://www.fas.org/news/iraq/2000/09/iraq-000918.htm

    Your newsmax link is similarly unhelpful in making your desperate attempt to try to link Libya's disarmament of its nuclear program to the events of 9/11. All this article says is that Gadaffi was afraid he would be attacked in the aftermath of 9/11, but not that he was willing to give up his nuclear arsenal at that time. He didn't give up his nukes until 2003, which is much close in time to the date of our invasion than the events of 9/11. It was only after Sadaam saw that we were not only willing to use force but that we actually WOULD use force that Sadaam gave up his nukes. Can't you figure that out dumbass?? I guess that's why you buy into loonybin stuff like "more poeple are being killed now than when Sadaam was in power". Take another toke off your crackpipe and dream up some more bullshit.

    In my post above I should have said Gadaffi gave up his nukes after the invasion of Iraq, not Sadaam

    Apparently Pat can’t read so I thought I would give him a Site where he wouldn’t have to use his obviously poor reading skills. Basically he accused my sources of being far left so here is one from the neutral BBC. Oh and of course pat provided no evidence documenting any distortions from Media Matters. Apparently it is just bad because he says so.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3962969.stm

    The risk of death in Iraq by violence is now 58 times greater than before the U.S led invasion. So, so much for his nonsense.

    “This is just the tip of the iceberg. Read the rest of this report to educate yourself about the breadth of Hussein's atrocities before you defend this butcher,”

    Ok, now I know you are very stupid. So – I – am - going – to – go - very – slow – here. I am not defending saddam. unlike you I’m not in favor of death and destruction. I am making the point that life is not better for the Iraqi people since his removal. That does not mean Saddam is a good guy. Understand? Probably not.

    On Libya the moron pointed out that Libya gave up it’s nuke program after the iraq invasion. This of course completely ignores all the gestures before the invasion by Libya. But hey who expected less?

    Since 1999 Libya has been trying to get back in the good graces of the west. Well before 9-11. After 9-11 Libya was one of the nations that condemned the attack. Again well before the Iraq invasion. What you are citing is the culmination of something that had been developing long before the invasion of Iraq.


    http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2006/66242.htm


    Anyway dipshit, debating you has been about as stimulating as picking the lint out of my belly button. So I think I will go do something more productive for a while. Enjoy the Kool-Aid!


    Just as I thought-- when confronted with my rebuttal evidence that completely shredded your claim (that you adopted lock stock and barrel from a left wing propagandist) that more people are now dying every year in Iraq than when Sadaam was in power, you fold faster than a French surrender monkey. Ha!

    You are too much of an idiot apparently to realize that any overtures than Libya made prior to 2002 to dismantle their nukes was just talk. It was only after the Libyans saw we would use force did they actually ACT to dismantle thier program. See, moron, prior to the invasion, Libya TALKS about dismantling, after the invasion, Libya ACTS to dismantle. Get it? I guess not, that's why you're an Olbermann loving dumbass.

    "Just as I thought-- when confronted with my rebuttal evidence that completely shredded your claim (that you adopted lock stock and barrel from a left wing propagandist) that more people are now dying every year in Iraq than when Sadaam was in power, you fold faster than a French surrender monkey. Ha!"


    HAHAHAHA you missed it again

    HAHAHHAA. still laughing at you.

    HAHA. Sorry can't stop

    One of the most cherished notions we hold as conservatives is the belief that government should be run like a business. It has been an article of faith for patriots since the reign of St Ronnie (or Grandpa Caligula as I like to call him--the friendly yet imperial sound of it appeals to me). Unfortunately, our domestic enemies hate the capitalist system and oppose our effort to corporatize government. Indeed, they do all they can to destroy those who attempt to make such changes. Their latest victim is David P. Smith, a Department of Interior official. Entrepreneurial and vicariously courageous, Smith is the very model of what a modern Republican man should be. That's why Our Leader appointed him to be the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fish, Wildlife and Parks.

    Smith went to work transforming his fiefdom into a business almost immediately, negotiating a deal in which he was allowed to shoot a buffalo in exchange for helping a billionaire-American named Dan Duncan obtain a special exotic animal import designation for the Port of Houston. The deal went down without a hitch. Duncan's men drove Smith up to an elderly buffalo (I like to think his name was Biff) and he shot it in the eye. A month later, the Port of Houston received its exotic animal designation. Everyone was happy. Duncan had his designation and Smith had Biff's head on his wall and hooves serving as bookends for his extensive collection of gladiator books.

    Unfortunately, our internal enemies got wind of the deal and started to raise hell about it. Unwilling to even entertain the idea that Smith's actions exemplified the kind of entrepreneurial spirit that made this nation great, they focused on a technical violation of the law, calling it bribery, as if exploiting one's power as a government official for personal gain is somehow unethical. Smith fought hard against their charges, but in the end, he was forced to resign. That's a shame. Although some might call him a villain, I prefer to think of him as a true conservative hero, just like Duke Cunningham, Tom DeLay, and Jerry Lewis.

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