Saturday, February 9, 2008

one hundred and ninety-two words

there's been a lot of talk this week about chelsea clinton making phone calls in support of her mother's presidential campaign. chelsea is apparently calling superdelegates, party officials, old boyfriends late at night, and talk show hosts.

that's right: chelsea called the women of the view. (well, three of them. who wants to talk to elizabeth what's-her-name? not even the other women on the view!) and whoopi, joy, and that other woman who's not star jones but doesn't know if the earth is flat or not, they talked about it. and arianna huffington/the huffington post ran a demeaning headline about them talking about it. and the women of the view then talked about THAT.

then (and here's where you're gonna find this interesting) on the february 7th edition of msnbc's tucker program (which, thankfully, was tucker-less that night) reporter/anchor david shuster said this about the whole deal:
"...doesn't it seem like Chelsea's sort of being pimped out in some weird sort of way?"

was it tacky? you bet. classy? nope. stupid? probably. and hey, if my mom were running for president you better believe i'd be making phone calls. wouldn't you?

the next morning, msnbc's morning joe program ran the clip of the women of the view, after which reporter/anchor david shuster apologized...well...eventually (feel free to skip to the last two words):
"Well, last night, on Tucker's show, we ran the same clip, and then out of that, I said a lot of wonderful things about Chelsea. I praised her; I said Americans should be proud of her; I talked about how Mike Huckabee has praised the Clintons for how they've raised her, and the fact of the matter is, as I said last night, everybody, all of us, love Chelsea Clinton. But we also talked about the fact that Chelsea Clinton, as the campaign has acknowledged, she's making calls to these superdelegates to try to help get Hillary, her mom, the nomination, which can be, as I pointed out, the unseemly side of politics. Well, last night, I used a phrase -- some slang about her efforts. I didn't think that people would take it literally, but some people have. And to the extent that people feel that I was being pejorative about the actions of Hillary -- of Chelsea Clinton making these phone calls -- to the extent that people feel I was being pejorative, I apologize for that. I should have seen that people might view it that way, and for that, then, I'm sorry."
it took mr. shuster a total of 192 words to actually get to the two that matter most: i'm sorry.

here's a bit of advice for anyone that feels the need to apologize for anything: get to the point.

you're welcome to blather on and on about why or when or what you meant or things you didn't actually say after you apologize. but putting your apology at the end of a lot of hot air...? well. by that time no one's listening, are they?

UPDATE 12:37 p.m. -- seems the reason it took shuster so many words to apologize is because he didn't want to.


  1. Hey, here's a comment.

    Good post, although check out the menagerie of Slate blogs on the topic

    Net: I'm typically unamused by the press and their antics, especially the double standards applied. Imagine, if you will, that an Obamanian used the "P-word" in reference to anything Clinton, Chelsea or otherwise. The press would devour all the scenery on that. Now, they all are licking their paws 'cause one of their own did something pretty stupid. Then again, failings of the press tend to have a short half-life - he'll be back.

    Working the blog, and the related links, I'm not sure how I'd feel about a Clinton vs. McCain bake-off, but I'm pretty sure I'd rather have Meghan McCain call my house than Chelsea. Any girl who can link Wolfmother and Chet Baker in the same "campaign playlist" is worth a few minutes of my time!

    Keep up the good work - makes Tuesdays a bit more interesting!


  2. Ah, the Modern Apology -- "I'm so sorry that you are such a moron as to have been offended by, oh whatever." Where were these people's grandmothers? This apology would not have passed muster with my Nana.
    amy h.


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