Culture of Truth: Political Courage



June 1, 2014 – Political satirist Culture of Truth bases The Bobblespeak Translations on Meet the Press and This Week with George Stephanopoulos. Using show transcripts, he creates the 'most ridiculous moment' for Virtually Speaking Sundays. Introduced by Jay Ackroyd. Richard Eskow and Stuart Zechman comment. Text at Excerpted from June 1 Virtually Speaking Sundays.

Hi, I'm Culture of Truth,

It was a particularly crazy day on the Sunday talk shows, as the subject of the day was the deal to trade America's only POW for Gitmo detainees. On Meet The Press, Chuck Hagel defended the deal, while David Gregory kept asking why the recently released Sargent won't speak English like a real American.


Rep. Adam Kinzinger – who is the new go-to guest, replacing John McCain – showed himself to be an expert at hedging – welcoming the POW home, then hinting that he is a deserter; praising the outcome, but calling the deal “shocking”, and praising Gen. Shinseki and condemning him at the same time.


When Gregory asked Kinzinger if Republicans in Congress were willing to spend more money on veterans, he insisted that the answer is not to spend more money, but to get better outcomes, and that you can't “just throw money at the problem”.


The show then hit on the two most important issues facing America – Edward Snowden and Benghazi. Turning to the all-important “patriot or traitor?” question, Chuck Todd showed an exclusive poll showing most Americans don't seem to care one way or the other, and seriously revealed that “hashtag patriot” beat “hashtag traitor” on twitter, thus solving the question once and for all.


Newt Gingrich then completely took over the discussion, ranting about 9/11 and how Snowden committed treason, and was a traitor, and intoned that Millenials won't support Snowden after we're attacked again, and they're all murdered, or something.


On ABC's This Week, George Stephanopoulos hinted darkly about the newly released POW, asking “there are a lot of questions about how he originally was captured and whether or not he had deserted, had left his post. Is that going to be investigated? And if it's found that he did, indeed, leave his post, will he be disciplined or has he already paid the price?”


Then came an interview with the delightfully unhinged Ted Cruz, who condemned the rescue of Sargent Bergdahl, saying terrorists now know if you capture a U.S. soldier, you can trade that soldier for five terrorists, but refused to say if he would do the same thing as President, insisting Bergdahl could have been rescued through military force.


He then said he that recently traveled to Israel, Ukraine, Poland and Estonia, and everywhere he goes Ambassadors whisper to him “where is America?” meaning, not literally, but that America is weak and Obama is weak.


After calling Obama weak, he immediately rejected using force in Ukraine, saying only the President “should have spoken out clearly in support of freedom;” put anti-ballistic missile batteries in Eastern Europe, and export natural gas, all of which would clearly drive Putin out of Ukraine.


He then complained that Hillary Clinton is politicizing Benghazi, and identified his key concern as “whether President Obama was awake or asleep while this terrorist attack was happening”


After accusing Obama of setting up straw men, he then claimed some fellow Republicans believe the best way to win is quote “you don't stand for anything.”


He wrapped up, telling an odd story about a women in Nebraska who hugged him and told him she has six kids, no husband, and 5 low-paying jobs because of Obamacare.


But the most absurd moment came when Stephanopoulos opened up the panel discussion, talking about the POW deal, saying “Bill Kristol, I have to tell you, I've been surprised at the vehemence of the criticism coming out after this announcement.” and Kristol was able to reply with a straight face, albeit a rictus grin, quote “I've been impressed by the courage, actually, of the Republicans who were willing to criticize what is, I think, an unfortunate deal made by the President of the United States, obviously at what's happy to have Sgt. Bergdahl back and therefore take some political courage, I think, to say, wait a second, let's look at the long-term national interest of the country”, while Peggy Noonan helpfully added “you have just told terrorists in the world and the Taliban, we can tell you now how to get your people out of GITMO. It's take an American soldier.”


Because of course it's very easy to just go take an American soldier, which is why there was only POW before yesterday.


Noonan then went on to accuse President Obama of making good speeches but running what she calls a “slobocracy,” a word she is proud to have invented.


So George Stephanopoulos and Bill Kristol, who have apparently been living under a rock inside a cave, are surprised and impressed that Republicans had the courage to attack a decision made the President, even one that rescued an American soldier, and Peggy Noonan, whose favorite President was a professional actor who traded weapons for American civilian hostages, criticizes the deal the President made, and thinks Obama is a speech maker who runs a “slobocracy.”


And that's the most ridiculous thing that happened this Sunday.