I'm watching Howard Dean on Meet the Press. That's a good thing because Tim Russert asks some pretty tough questions of the guests on the program, regardless of which party stripe they are.
Same for Howard Dean.
"I think women should have the right to choose their own health care," says Howard. Who would disagree with that? But he gave that answer in response to the Democratic stand that supports abortion on demand.
"I don't think he should be in Congress," says Howard. This in regard to Tom Delay over ethics charges. He wants to clean up Washington. I'm all in favor for that, and while we're at it, can we apply that same standard to both Republicans and Democrats? Half of both parties would be gone tomorrow. I'd support that, but I don't think that's what he meant.
"They were misled by the President." This was his answer about why many Democrats supported the President in going to war against Saddam Hussein. Except that Democrats are on record in 1998 in support of going in to "finish the job." Pre-Bush.
Look, I'm all for tough questions, brutal honesty, and confrontation on important issues of the day. We need that. But in each of these instances (and others) Howard Dean avoided the truth or twisted it for his own purposes.
He stated that he was for personal rights, individual freedoms, and individual responsibility. And then said that raising taxes to repair social security was perfectly fine. No, it's not fine. Where's the individual responsibility in that, when our children today will need to be the chief contributors for baby boomer retirements for social security to remain solvent?? It's an outrage.
I say this about both parties: can we have a fact-based, realistic discussion?
I listen to Sean Hannity on the way home some afternoons when I have to drive my truck to work, and he misconstrues what people say to the point that I really can't listen to him much any more.
Neither is right. For any successful discussion, we need to get the indisputable facts on the table, but we're having a hard time doing even that.
Howard Dean gave a lot of red meat to conservative talk show hosts for the next week. He's too easily refuted on many of his points, which he could have avoided by sticking to the truth. Which means that Sean Hannity and others will have a great opportunity to then in turn twist Howard's words for their own purposes. The cycle goes on.
Makes me glad that I'll be riding my bike to work for most of the week.