June 28, 2004

Cheney, Profanity, and Evasion

Chuck noted Cheney’s recent example of raising the tone in Washington D.C. in a recent post on Unbecoming Levity.

A few questions about Halliburton and suddenly Cheney’s vocabulary smells like low tide in New Bedford harbor (I love you, New Bedford—don’t be angry with me).

As I have mentioned elsewhere, I don’t care much about Cheney’s language. Just like when Bush called Adam Clymer a “major league asshole” and Cheney assented (great picture on Snopes of that moment caught on film, BTW), I think Bush supporters are just going to look at this as their heroes giving the opposition what-for. Noting the hypocrisy of using profanity on the floor of the Senate after having promised to “raise the tone” in Washington amuses us Bush detractors while bouncing off his supporters like questions off Dubya at a news conference.

But if you pay close attention, the amazing thing is that when Cheney whips out the F-word, suddenly the questions about Halliburton are old news. They fall away for a few news cycles until some other silly story makes the headlines.

I agree, the guy’s a hypocritical jerk. But his answers are important, not the way he phrases them. The story here, in my humble opinion, is that Cheney’s evasive technique is starting to tax him. He obviously feels it’s less politically costly to drop an F-bomb on the Senate floor than to actually answer the question. That’s the political equation we’re seeing.

Posted by James at June 28, 2004 7:27 PM
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Bob and I are hoping someone runs the story on the radio, full foul language and all, so the FCC will try to ding them with an obscenity fine.

Yep, it would be a perfect case. The Vice, as Maureen Dowd calls him, can say it, but it's too indescent for broadcast? Hmmm...

Posted by: Patti M. at June 29, 2004 10:04 AM

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