Monday, January 19, 2004

Novak on Crossfire

I was watching "Crossfire" a minute ago and out of the blue, Robert Novak makes a personal attack on James Carville. Novak accused Carville of doing a great deal to coarsen the (precious, precious) political discourse in America. In the first place, pre-confession Lee Atwater and his demon twin Karl Rove are far nastier political operators than Carville. I very much doubt that one campaign worker can really "coarsen" American politics on his own and despite all the recent tut-tutting by many in the press, I do not believe the rhetoric of today's politicians is anymore inflammatory than it has ever been. Finally, can Novak really criticizes anyone for anything when he says things like this:

BEGALA: It is embarrassing that Al Gore lost Tennessee. It is more embarrassing that George Bush lost America. Al Gore won that election. He won it in Florida, which is a Southern state.


BEGALA: And I don't take anybody making fun of Al Gore, who actually got more votes than George W. Bush.

NOVAK: You know, you can give that old -- that old -- those talking points any time you want, Paul. But the fact is, your party is in bad shape in the white South. And


BEGALA: Why is that?


BEGALA: Why is that?

NOVAK: It's because it's a conservative, patriotic area.


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