Wednesday, March 25, 2009

More McCollum

My foray into the public statement jungle of Rep. Betty McCollum yesterday yields a few more observations. All of these are available for context stripping and out of proportion blowing by media members wishing to give her the Michelle Bachmann treatment.

One consistent theme is McCollum's tendency to use unnecessary, dramatic adjectives. Example, her comments on the never ending Coleman-Franken election recount:
"Now that the state Canvassing Board has certified Mr. Franken as the winner of Minnesota's Senate seat, following an exceptionally transparent, bipartisan, and meticulous recount process, it is time for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to immediately seat Mr. Franken to ensure that Minnesotans have full representation in the U.S. Senate."
Betty McCollum's hierarchy of transparency:

-- buttered slice of 7-grain bread: slightly transparent
---- jar of Vaseline: moderately transparent
------ pane of glass: very transparent
-------- Minnesota's election recount process: exceptionally transparent

Next, her comments on the state of Minnesota's budget:
"The announcement that the State of Minnesota is facing a massive budget disaster means Governor Pawlenty has some tough choices to make. He can go it alone and eviscerate the safety net an ever growing number of Minnesota families depend upon for their daily needs. Or, the governor can reach out in a spirit of partnership to the Minnesota Congressional delegation to work collaboratively, along with legislative leaders, to responsibly find solutions to the state’s fiscal mess."
It's true, we could probably skate over a medium-sized budget disaster. Maybe even clear a large budget disaster without sweating. But these massive budget disasters are going to force some tough choices.

From this description, I get the sense that being in Congress for 8 years gets one intimately familiar with "budget disasters". Eskimos have 144 words for snow. Congress people have 144 words for budget disasters.

Incidentally, McCollum has been happily sitting around in Congress for nearly a decade while the federal budget disaster has ballooned to staggering, unprecedented levels of massiveness. I'm praying Tim Pawlenty can find more credible sources for advice on how to handle a budget disaster than Betty McCollum.

We continue, her comments on the violence in Israel:

"The war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip is the final blow to any Middle East peace process. Palestinians are being killed in alarming numbers while Hamas continues to fire rockets at Israel.

What is Betty McCollum's threshold for killing Palestinians? What ever it may be, it has now been exceeded, because only recent numbers have alarmed her. But before then, what, she was fine with it? Doesn't sound very peace-loving to me.

Please note, all of these statements were from her own press releases. Comments subject to layers of staff editorial control and with the time necessary for calm reflection and syntactic precision. I can only imagine the things she might say while speaking extemporaneously, let alone while being hectored by a conniving, hyper partisan media personality during a live broadcast.

BTW, the Northern Alliance Radio Network has availability for a guest this week.