Thursday, August 19, 2004

Amazing New Breakthrough In Speech and Rhetoric

Last night Paul Hamm managed the most amazing comeback in Olympic gymnastic history. World Champion Hamm, who looks like Richie Cunningham's wet dream fantasy body, was ranked 12th after four rotations: a disastrous vault caused him to fall over, on his butt, onto the judge's table. Tres tacky, and great television. But Hamm buckled down and fought as hard as he could, hoping that a world-champion performance would get him the bronze and a measure of self-respect.

He was last to perform (among medal contenders) and everyone in striking distance had to sit there and watch him deliver as perfect a high bar performance as he has ever done. Hamm's coaches had done the math, but he hadn't, and when his score was posted it took him several shocked seconds to realize what they were saying: he managed to win the gold by twelve-thousandths of a point.

And Hamm gave only the second-most-astonishing performance of August 18th.

For those of us who argue for a living -- and really, isn't that all of us? -- there is no more impressive news than Scott McClellan's amazing triumph, his final achievement of the Holy Grail of oral argument. Scott McClellan managed to orally deliver a footnote.

Here's the nail-biting transcript of Scott McClellan's statements at the press "gaggle":

His [Kerry's] false attacks on our support for veterans have been discredited. Under the President, funding* for our veterans has more than doubled over the previous eight years. And this President has made sure we fulfilled our commitment to our nation's veterans, by increasing the health care funding for our veterans by more than 40 percent, and as I pointed out, by more than doubling the funding* of the previous eight years for our veterans. So it sounds like it's more of the same false attacks that have already been discredited.

[At end of transcript] * by nearly doubling the funding increase of the previous eight years

He sticks the landing! The lawyers in the audience go wild!

A lesser man would have to take a lump for looking the press corps right in the face and lying about the Bush administration's efforts on behalf of veterans. Hell, if I stood up and told a court that funding had "doubled," and it hadn't, I would get disbarred. But not my man Scott -- his amazing ability to orally deliver a footnote covered his butt. I'm a little startled that the reporters haven't been making a big deal out of this amazing achievement. It's the damn liberal media. They never give the Bush administration the credit it's due.

And I would like to take a moment to respond to all the low-minded bastards that have tried to tear down Scott's accomplishment. There are those that have called for Scott's world-record, Gold-medal-winning oration to be "disqualified" because it is, to paraphrase, "still a goddamned lie." They look at the Right's own numbers and point out that funding for the VA increased by 31.7% ($11 bn) under Clinton and 37.6% ($18 bn) under Bush, which means that even the footnote's claim that Bush "doubl[ed] the funding increase of the previous eight years" was a flagrant attempt to mislead the White House Press Corps. They might also say that, technically, 37.6 is less than 40%, not "more than" 40%. They might also say all of this in French.

Now I want to say this, and I want to say it clearly.

If you are so petty, so low, that you would discount the world's first oral footnote simply because that footnote corrected one lie with another lie, then you have my contempt, sir. You people with your science and your objectively provable facts lack all appreciation for art and the limitless possibility of the human race. And you hate America.

You probably wanted Paul Hamm to lose.

 8:52 AM

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