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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Ambush Interviewer Gets Ambushed

Alan Simpson, unlike Bob Etheridge, stayed and answered questions during a hostile ambush interview, and gave the questioner, Alex Lawson of Social Security Works (filming for Firedoglake's "live stream") an earful about the fallacies behind left-wing attacks on reforming Social Security and lowering the deficit.

Lawson asked loaded questions but didn't want to hear the answers because the truth is that Social Security monies have been borrowed to fund big government programs which cannot be sustained.

Lawson may have thought he was ambushing Simpson, but by staying and verbally sparring with Lawson, Simpson obviously caught Lawson off guard. The hunter became the hunted.

But what does Firedoglake run as the headline and story line? That Simpson used the term "lesser people in society" in referring to the need to preserve Social Security.

Clearly Simpson meant people of lesser economic means, but rather than deal with the facts and reality, Firedoglake used that term as proof that Simpson views poor people as lesser human beings, and calls the commission the "Catfood Commission." Here is part of the exchange:

ALAN SIMPSON: We’re really working on solvency… the key is solvency

ALEX LAWSON: What about adequacy? Are you focusing on adequacy as well?

SIMPSON: Where do you come up with all the crap you come up with?

SIMPSON: We’re trying to take care of the lesser people in society and do that in a way without getting into all the flash words you love dig up, like cutting Social Security, which is bullshit. We’re not cutting anything, we’re trying to make it solvent.

I have my own issues with this commission and how it likely will be used by Obama as an excuse to break (again) his promise not to raise taxes on anyone making under $250,000 per year.

But at least Simpson was honest enough to lay the cards on the table when asked, unlike the Democrats -- particularly Harry "Havoc" Reid and Max "Near Chaos" Baucus -- who refused to include funds for the "Doc Fix" in Obamacare so they could get favorable CBO scoring, and now are screaming about the failure to fund the Doc Fix.

Here is the video (h/t HotAir via Breitbart). Turn up the sound:

Related Posts:
Harry "Havoc" Reid
Baucus: ObamaCare Creates "Near Chaos" Without More Spending
How Bob Etheridge Reacts to Democratic Questioners

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  1. No offense but isn't entitlements like welfare and medicaid and ESL for "lesser people" in society. Those that are so afflicted that they cannot take care of themselves and need the largesse of society in order to survive. All Simpson did was use language that the left has used for decades. I remember a conversation with a ardently left-wing young man who kept telling me how hispanic immigrants had to have these special programs because they were not capable like we were. In response I told him that if I had said that I would be called a racist, but because he is a democrat he was allowed to be condescending. Now who is the real racist, I asked him-I who thinks that everyone is equally capable or him and his cronies. He had no answer.

  2. I do think Simpson has been one of the better members for facing a crowd or reporter, and there is much to be said for that.

    What is the difference between "lesser" and "small"?

    What bothers me more is the "take care of" idea. It puts the lesser people on unequal footing as adults in a free society. Humans are not puppies and kittens, they have souls and free will. When the government takes care of you, it uses your free will, and others' money.

  3. In further thinking about the liberal tendency to advocate group identity politics, what bothers me about the "lesser people" phrase is the inference that people stay in this group, that it is stagnant, static, and does not change.

    I am like Independent Patriot; it would be considered anathema to assume a baby born to a poor couple did not have the potential to grow up and become a productive member of society. In the health care debate, the idea that abortion and reducing care for the elderly were acceptable ways of saving money, but the permanent wards of the state, people in their 30's and 40's on permanent disability (SSI), were hardly mentioned. People who may have the potential to be productive, and those who have proven productive became high profile sacrafices to those who are designated never going to be productive.

    If Simpson is serious about making SS solvent, the definition of permanent disability for those under retirement age is a start. I watch Krauthammer on tv and wonder just what makes a person disabled?

  4. Any discussion of Social Security that does not include the words "Ponzi Scheme" is worthless. That is the key phrase to understanding what it is.

    Simpson should have also said that national defense is a legitimate and Constitutional function of the US government. Retirement programs are not. George Washington did not even believe that the Constitution allowed a pension for soldiers let alone the average guy on the street.

  5. "Alex Lawson was incredibly respectful and polite as the crankly Simpson berated, interrupted and cussed him", claims FDL.

    "Incredibly respectful and polite" does not describe Alex Lawson at all. "Incredibly eager to interject his own (self-serving) viewpoints" would sound more like it.

    Whenever Alan Simpson answered a question, AL would jump to the next (pre-established) talking point, filled with flash words and rigged to make the left's (self-serving) point of view sound like a given, like something that no longer merits the least discussion.

    And yes, one thing is true in FDL's remark: that attitude is something that often does bring out the crankiness in conservatives — and in most people in general…

  6. I was glad to see the final paragraph which talked about the "Doc Fix". I am not sure how many people on Medicare realize that the National Health Insurance bill shortchanged the doctor seeing Medicare patients for the sole purpose of getting the bill a better CBO score. This bill has been a tissue of lies, half truths, hidden costs, and hidden restrictions. The more these things are publicized, the more anger there is directed at that bill.

  7. Most people cannot match Alan Simpson--straight talker and all round good guy; got that Wyoming cowboy thing going for him. Certainly cannot be bested by some dweeb like the FDL guy. The down side to any interview of course, is how they are edited and then rebroadcast--Seems to me anyone giving an interview should demand to see the final version prior to publication and be provided a forum to respond.

  8. I had the great pleasure of riding a campaign bus with Senator Simpson in 1994. He is a great man who always told you what he was thinking. I don't know how he made it so long in politics with that attitude, except that the people of Wyoming are generally good at judging character.

    OT, One day I standing outside the campaign bus, Senator Simpson walked up to two younger men that were on the bus and showed them a trick that he taught himself in college. Senator Simpson pulled a silver dollar from his pocket, flicked it up in the air. As the coin was nearing the ground he kicked it with the heal of his boot. The Senator then pulled open the breast pocket of his jacket and caught the coin.

    Senator Simpson is talented in many ways.

  9. Boy was I sandbagged on this item over at Hot Air! I thought, "Hot dog, another out of touch member of congress gets it handed to him by a hip, with it, savvy interviewer."

    Then, as the viddy unfolded, the realization struck.

    Thank goodness Senator Simpson is on that commission. It's also good to see the lib ambushes are really as maladroit as they are.

    .."with it"?

  10. Insty is linking to this as an example of how to respond to ambush journalists, when it obviously isn't. Even Insty should have realized that the video's upshot is disputed. This site and other GOP sites say Simpson won. FDL and HuffPo say the questioner won. If the video were the correct response, then who won would be clear and wouldn't break along party lines.

  11. Maybe Firedoglake can paint Simpson in blackface like they did with Lieberman.

  12. Sen Simpson: "Would you listen to me instead of babbling?"

    ha ha ha loved that part. on that phrase alone I call him the clear winner

  13. On the other hand, LonewackoDotCom is a well-known idiot troll slightly to the left of Che Guevara.

    FDL demonstrates his own complete ignorance when he keeps insisting that there's still money in the system for SS, despite the simple fact that all SS funds have been routinely routed into General Revenue for decades. That money is gone.