Thursday, April 28, 2005

Head, meet wall.

Blogger-willing, I'm going to live-blog President Bush's prime time press conference tonight.

A bit of background courtesy of The Washington Post:

For the first time in over a year, President Bush will hold a prime-time news conference tonight, at 8:30 p.m. ET.

His goal: Stop the bleeding.

Friday marks the end of the first 100 days of Bush's second term. And Sunday marks the end of his 60-day Social Security barnstorming tour.

As Bush approaches those mileposts, many observers are noting his low approval ratings and his lack of progress in achieving some key initiatives and they wonder: Has the president overreached? Has he lost his touch? Is he already a lame duck?

Tonight's news conference creates an opportunity for Bush to assert that he is still relevant, enthusiastically reaffirm his domestic and international agendas, and ask the American people directly for their support.

The Post also quotes ABC's The Note and their guesses as to what we will see:

"Reporters' topics that the President's creative team will have prepared him for will include: Poll numbers (Bush will be dismissive, and answer such questions with off-topic information); Iraq's slip back into violence following the election (Bush will use his standard 'Democracy is hard,' along with an historical allusion to how long it took the colonists in America to get up and running); Bush's weird relationship with the Saudis (Bush will talk about good progress in the Middle East and ANWR); the economy ('The economy is strong,' he will say in channeling Don Evans and marshalling the best stats.)

"Also: Conservative dissent on tax caps; the federal marriage amendment; will Jews go to heaven?; if Tom DeLay is found culpable by the ethics committee, should he step aside as leader?; does he support the decision to rescind GOP-backed ethics rule changes?; did he lie to Harry Reid about not politicizing the filibuster debate?; is John Bolton an angry man?

I will not be doing any typing myself - I'll be busy in the corner watching the TV, drinking vast quantities of alcohol and mainlining prozac while flicking the light on and off รก la Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction.

My editorial assistant Giuseppe will be typing and posting my comments. Please excuse any spelling or grammatical errors; after fleeing Benedict XVI and landing in America, his English is not perfect. Also, I pay him in Hot Pocketstm.

So stay tuned! The conference starts at 8:30ERT (Eastern Reagan Time - the Republicans have renamed the time zone to honor the man who saved the world from, well, everything. He single-handedly ended Communism and saved the Unicorns!)

The press conference will be broadcast on many stations, like NRC (National Reagan Company), CRS (Columbia Reagan System) and ARC (American Reagan Company).

Giuseppe, you take over, the screen is blurring...

7:27pm - no chance of them canceling it now.

7:33pm - CNN is reporting that Bush will announce a new section of his Social Security Plan - something about indexing, but I don't think it has to do with 4X6 cards. However, he is not dropping the idea of "Personal Accounts."

7:38pm - Joseph Biden is on MSNBC discussing the democratic filibuster issue. It's interesting that now the term "nuclear option" is being credited to the Democrats, when it was the Republicans that started using it - then switched terms after it was decided that major death and destruction wasn't the best imagery. Other phrase voted down by the Republicans: "Filibuster Abortion."

7:44pm - Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) is on MSNBC, she thinks the president will argue for more wind power for energy. Not pictured: Her crack pipe.

7:48pm - Did you know Family Feud is still on tv?! It's on the PAX network, that sidekick guy from Home Improvement hosts it. It still sucks the big one.

7:51pm - Live shot on FOX News of the East Room in the White House where the conference will take place - looks like the press actually put on pressed suits for once. Also, where are the women?

7:53pm - if you pull on your eyebrows.. it's amazing how many hairs come out.

7:57pm - now they are saying this puppy will start at 8:01pm. huh? It's not like American Idol is on tonight.

7:59pm - Refill this glass!!!

8:00pm - Red Tie ... angry.

8:01pm - Gasoline first. "I want to help familes" therefore, we must have more oil. (What happened to all that oil we were going to get from Iraq? You know, that oil that was going to pay for the war?)

8:02pm - Four key steps to better energy. (My head hurts already. Oh, Four steps = one passing of the Bush Energy Bill. By this summer. On his desk. Wait.. he won't be in DC in the summer.)

8:03pm - On to social security - Bush says it's doomed - not true, but it helps his cause. Again, he says the baby boomers are to blame. Damn you boomers! in 2041 social security will be bankrupt. Well, tell me Mr. Bush, what will your TRILLION dollar deficit mean then? What are you doing for that?

8:06pm - Bush announces a "better deal" for younger workers. Benefits equal to or better to what we have now. Bush proposes more money for poor people, a reform, how? I have no fucking idea. Bush is looking for "good faith proposals" that do not harm our economy. Well, if it's not going to harm the economy, it's not going to come from the White House.

8:08pm - Personal Accounts. Higher rate of return my ass. Suppliment check from Social Security. Notice he doesn't note that if personal accounts are enacted that he wants to GUT the government money put into Social Security. I still ask, what happens to people that invest in this fully and lose all their money. oops. Will the gov't be there to bail them out?

8:12pm - Question Time! Fun!

8:13pm - All paraphrase (folks, these will ALL be paraphrases, i'm boiling it down for you): Terry Hunt: Are you Sad?
Bush: It's been a long time since anyone has done any work. I have a duty. We're just getting started. By the time I'm done we'll have a much BIGGER deficit. (ok. he didn't say that at all.)

8:14pm - Bush: Once America realizes there is a problem, then they'll ask for change. Me: yeah, I hope they realize in 2008 when they vote the repubs out of office.

8:16pm - Steve: Iraq question... bombing are still happening.
Bush: We're winning. some aren't happy with democracy. they want to go back to mass graves. (let's not talk about the over 100,000 Iraqis this war has killed).
Bush: Iraq is hard.

8:18pm - Bush: today I talked to the prime minister of Iraq, I used MCI. (ok, lies). I reminded him that his Constitution is due, and that he cannot do extra credit to make up the grade.

8:19pm - David Greggory - what a cutie - brings up the Family Research Council - does not burst into flames. Reporter: why are people so against who you nominated for judges? Bush: They should get an up or down vote. (so no filibuster, bush? no tradition?!). Bush: judges should not be activists (not said: unless they are on my side.)

8:20pm - John: how do your energy bill help us right now?
Bush: I told you already. We needs more of the oil. The black gold. prices, they be too high. If a country can make more, they should. Cuz oil is king. I wish i could WAVE A MAGIC WAND (bush says this ALL THE TIME).
Drudge volunteers wand.

8:21pm - Bush: I need gas.

8:23pm - Terry.. oh, NO NO.. back to John. Tussle.. Reporters wrestle on the white house floor... No pudding involved.

8:24pm - Terry (wait, is that the SAME terry? How many terries are there?!): If we are winning the war on terrorism, why are so many more people dead and rotting?
Bush: Cuz we're doing it in foreign countries, that causes death. I need to spread for democracy.

8:26pm - some woman (nice suit): what about Putin? you still in love with him? He's giving weapons to bad men.
Bush: I had a long talk with him. I sat him down. He said he supports democracy, and I trust him, and the Condi. She's so pretty. I'm working close with the Russkes. Weapons may be bad, I don't appreciate that, so I stopped drinking vodka before noon. (ok, some lies there.)

8:27pm - Carl: Refill this glass you muscle-bound mimbo!

8:28pm - ummmm, Bolton stuff. *yawn*

8:31pm - Bush: The UN is good, but not TOO good.

8:32pm - Stretch (stretch? is that Jeff Gannon?! no, wait, he's "pumped", not "stretch"): personal accounts, must be?
Bush: yes. it has to be. I feel strongly about that because of debt. (what? so you privatize it and it costs billions more?)
Bush: why can only the rich have money? (not said: Like me, and my family, and my friends. I'm rich. I can buy and sell you, Flicka.)

8:34pm - David: when the troops come home from Iraq?
Bush: No timetables, they make my head hurt. As soon as possible, as soon as the Iraqis can cause as much trouble as we do.

8:37pm - This is where Wolf Blitzer goes to the can, he has a stagehand fill him in later. Hey, you gotta drain the lizard.

8:38pm - North Korea: s'bad. they might have weapons. I think the best way to work with this is to bring leverage - bring in more countries to work with us. (You know, just like what I DIDN'T do in Iraq. (You forgot Poland!!))

8:40pm - Ed: why does everyone hate everyone else in DC?
Bush: I'm disappointed. I thought everyone would want to work together. I wanted to work with everyone. But there is a bad cloud over DC - the insiders. (OF WHICH I AM ONE, DUH). I'm proud of my party. We're full of ideas - like keeping a feeding tube in a dead woman.

8:42pm - Carl screams: "No Shit! No Shit, ya bastard!"

8:43pm - Bill: will anything get done?
Bush: ah, we're working on stuff, and I sign stuff all the time. I signed for a FedEX package just this morning. It was a new shower curtain for my friend. It had the fish on it. Nice. (I know, lies lies lies)

8:45pm - random reporter: North Korea, talk more.
Bush: blah blah blah blah blah let's do in N. Korea what we never did in Iraq. blah blah blah blah.

8:48pm - John: Economy. no growth, just bumps in the road? this concerns you?
Bush: I am concerned. Gas pump. (huh? How did we get back to gas prices? that's a nice spin Mr. Bush.)

8:50pm - How long does this go on? Jesus.

8:52pm - tax reform. let's make it easier, and make people pay. (christ, which president HASN'T said this?)

8:53pm - Reporter: no child left behind, you're getting sued for it, 'splain.
Bush: we're making progress. We're going to spend money to help the states. (I'm sorry, but the reason you are being sued is because schools do NOT HAVE ENOUGH MONEY to meet your demands. You are pushing these requirements to the states.) (Plus, I don't like you, I don't like you one bit.)

8:54: Reporter: What about the lawsuit against you?
Bush: talk to my lawyer. (sure he wasn't in Hollywood for any length of time? Maybe he's watching Law and Order.)

8:55pm - Mr, Knocks(sp?): North Korea again, what is this, a press meme?

8:37pm - Bush: Last question - TV shows are important
Hutch (huh?): Social Security, indexing? (4x6?) How far will you go - (OOH he mentioned dick cheney)..
Bush: That'll be negotiated ... let the congress do it. No one will retire in poverty. Everyone will have money. It's all good, pass the doobie. (ok, I cannot report this, he didn't say that at all, Carl is VERY drunk now.)

8:59pm - Carl: DAMN YOU OHIO! DAMN YOU OHIO!!!
Bush: Thank you, God bless our country.



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