Friday, January 28, 2005

Gotcha . . .only not really

A few days ago while tuning my radio to what I thought was DC's other sports radio station, I discovered that it had become the home of "Progressive Radio," which I assumed meant that Air America had found a station in DC. This later turned out to be accurate. So, being the fair minded gent that I am, I promised to tune in to a little bit of it to see what it was like. Unfortunately I have not gotten a chance to really listen to too much yet because you have to be standing in the middle of the street to get reception. Yes, I know I can listen over the net, but it didn't seem all that pressing.

I did manage to catch a little over my lunch break because John Hinderaker from Power Line was going to make an appearance on the Al Franken show. I also caught the tail-end of Franken's chat with Nick Coleman.

First of all, first impressions are not always accurate, but this was fairly tedious stuff. Ideology aside, this was about the most boring twenty minutes of radio that I have ever heard, and that includes many an Atlanta Braves radio game. Franken's . . .delivery. . .is . . .a . . . little slow. And he tends to mumble. I mean, so do I, but then I'm not on the radio, and I don't intend to be.

More importantly, it never seemed that Franken ever intended to have an actual discussion with the Rocket Man. Instead, in the space of ten minutes, he harped on two seemingly trivial points. First, Franken subtly accused Hinderaker of lying about not really being familiar with Franken's work on SNL, citing this Hindrocket post from about a year and a half ago, titled "Michelle Malkin 1, Al Franken 0." Here's the entirety of the post:
Al Franken is a former comedian, kind of like Paul Krugman is a former economist. He last said something funny during the Carter administration. Now Michelle Malkin takes him to task for his deceitful attack on John Ashcroft and the sexual abstinence movement.

Michelle got the goods on Franken via The Smoking Gun, which caught Franken misusing a token position at Harvard's School of Government to send fake correspondence to Ashcroft and others under the guise of a "Harvard program."

We commented recently on a "Harvard study" that turned out to be a far-left partisan exercise in disguise. Increasingly, Harvard is selling itself as a platform to legitimize nut-case leftists. Sort of the opposite of abstinence, if you think about it.
Now I don't know what Franken's main argument against this article is, because he never actually got around to talking about it with Hinderaker. Instead he moved from non sequitor to non sequitor, questioning Malkin's own integrity in light of her appearance on Chris Mathews, questioning Hinderaker's claim to not watch SNL, and all sorts of things that prevented Franken from actually discussing the substance of the post.

Flustered at Hinderaker's answers, he moves on to a post written by one of Hinderaker's co-bloggers, Big Trunk, on Franken's USO show, located here. Again, though spending several minutes on the issue, Franken never really addresses the substance on what was said, instead - very slowly - going over the minutiae of the background of the story. When Hinderaker asserts that he applauds Franken for doing the shows, Franken snaps back and asks why Hinderaker could have written so negatively about his performance, which ignores the fact that a)Big Trunk, not Hindrocket, actually wrote the post, and b)it questions the humor involved in the act, and not Franken's visit in and of itself. In fact, over 90% of the post merely quoted Franken's brother. Big Trunk's oh-so-biting commentary:
As for me, I'm overcome by nostalgia for Bob Hope. It sounds like our soldiers in Iraq are more the victims of bad jokes than of an incompetent administration.
Well, gee, he sure did rip Franken a new one. Snarky yes, but the sort of thing that proves pettiness or spitefulness, or even willful misrepresentation on the part of Big Trunk and Powerline? Not quite.

Update: Hindrocket's thoughts on the interview.


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