Reluctantly blogging the convention – UPDATED

As regular readers know, I watch very little-to nothing by way of tv news, unless it’s breaking, but I thought I’d watch a bit of the convention tonight. I’m still going to try. But honestly, after flipping from cable channel to cable channel and discovering I just couldn’t abide any of those people, not on CNN, not on MSNBC (I used to like Matthews, but my GAWD he looks and sounds like a damn crank, anymore), not on FOX.

Tossing the remote I bellowed, “Isn’t there anyone I actually want to watch on these channels?”

I think I’d hoped that Linus and his blanket would show up and recite a passage from Matthew that would explain it all. But no such luck.

I tried again. I picked up my notebook and plunged in, channel surfing…and an hour later, when I glanced down I had written only this:

“Wolf Blitzer looks miserable. He looks like someone is just off camera, holding a gun on him; he looks like a hostage.”


“I don’t love prolonged chanting of “U-S-A, U-S-A” but at least these people are chanting for the whole nation, and not in the name of one man.”

Sigh. I’m off to try again! Supposedly they’ll be talking about a Medal of Honor winner. That will be good. Maybe. Probably.

UPDATE: Laura Bush looks fabulous and I love her suit. She should wear red more often. Listening to her praise her husband, I am disappointed in the response of the crowd when she talks about what Bush has done for human life in Africa; even his own party does not understand the huge impact he has had there. Thanks to a disinterested press, sometimes I think only Bob Geldof and Bono appreciate it. Also, she says something quite true: thanks to Bush, “50 million people in Afghanistan and Iraq live in freedom.” Good applause, not great.

President Bush seemed almost moist-eyed to me as he talked about 9/11. I wonder if he’ll ever get over that event. I bet not.

Fred Thompson strolls up and takes command. Introduces John McCain’s 96 year old mother, Roberta. I can’t believe that lady is 96. She looks formidable and fantastic. Thompson goes after Palin’s critics, says the Dems are in a “state of panic” about her – he’s right, and compares her to Teddy Roosevelt. Bully! My favorite line: “Sarah Palin has GOVERNED, not just showing up on the Sunday talk shows and hitting the Washington cocktail circuit!” Love it.

UPDATE II : Fred Thompson gave a GREAT speech (text here, and STACLU has vid excerpts). I come online to learn that NBC and CBS could not be bothered letting their viewers see or hear it. What littleness…and what fear. Afraid to let people hear a speech.

It’s not democratic. It’s not “the American way.” What would YOU call that decision?

Thompson’s full speech here (h/t Gina, in comments, who likens the press “analysts” to a bunch of slumber-party gossipers. Not bad! Go Gina!)

Ann Althouse live blogged the speeches (I have to either get a laptop or move my computer; liveblogging is hard in my set-up) – she makes very interesting observations, and says CNN is just insufferable. I thought so too, I couldn’t watch them. Couldn’t watch any of them, actually. I applaud anyone who can sit through watching and listening to a bunch of nasty blowhards and vain gasbags as they sneer and pose and engage in snide innuendo. Also, Althouse says Donna Brazile, who I kind of have a girl-crush on, stumbled so much in her commentary, she seemed to be reading from a teleprompter. Hmm.

Obi’s Sister says Campbell Brown was so rude to a McCain staffer that McCain has pulled out of an interview with Larry King. Well, good. Enough, already. Why play along with these hostile idiots?

UPDATE III: Having seen the tape of Brown and Bounds, I have more thoughts here

Chuck Muth has a full recap
AJ Strata

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Francesca

    I want to thank you for your coverage on Sarah Palin. My favorite so far was the one on generosity of spirit you posted the other day. Seriously, all this savage hatred toward the Palins has wounded my soul. I have truly felt like weeping these last several days.

    About TV . . . the talking heads are so pompous that I cannot watch either.

    I’ll just follow along online.

    Thank you so much again.

  • Cathy

    Dear Anchoress,

    I was exactly where you are earlier this evening and then I discovered CSPAN – no ads and, best of all, no commentators!!

  • Bender B. Rodriguez

    Early on, I just decided to watch House (the Amber dies rerun).

    During commercials, I tried flipping around, and everywhere I stopped, all I heard was some negative remark or attempt at creating controversy. I did not heard one positive remark from “reporters.” None of the breathless ecstatic glowing that we saw last week. And even when they were not being overtly negative, they were totally clueless and said moronic things, which is not surprising since lib reporters do not have the faintest idea at how conservatives think. Especially idiotic are supposed experts like David Gergen, who spouts nothing but nonsense about conservatives.

    Meanwhile, I see that when Fred Thompson was speaking (and giving a very moving account of McCain’s military service, capture, and imprisonment), the broadcast networks did not carry him live. Instead, viewers were treated to the great wisdom of George Stephanolopis and Diane Sawyer.

  • ShanaSFO

    Its easier to watch live streaming on Fox on the internet. Lousy picture (for my pc isn’t brandnew out of the box) but NO COMMENTARY.

  • JanY

    Yeah, I watched livestream from our local ABC channel. Much much better. There was a distracting chat going on on the side, but I just ignored it.

  • Bender B. Rodriguez

    “We hear a lot of talk about hope. John McCain knows about hope. That’s all he had to survive on.”
    –Fred Thompson

    Sigh. You know, if only John McCain had not played the maverick so much (the Republicans are not always wrong and do not always need to be fought against, you know), he could have everyone as excited about him as they are about his running mate.

    You hear stuff like this about McCain, which fills you with admiration, and then you look at his recent political career and . . . you just shake your head.

    Two lines of attack that they need to press again and again and again –

    “This is not reform. And it’s certainly not change. It is basically the same old stuff they’ve been peddling for years.”


    “Now our opponents tell you not to worry about their tax increases. They tell you they are not going to tax your family. No, they’re just going to tax “businesses”! So unless you buy something from a “business”, like groceries or clothes or gasoline … or unless you get a paycheck from a big or a small “business”, don’t worry … it’s not going to affect you. They say they are not going to take any water out of your side of the bucket, just the “other” side of the bucket! That’s their idea of tax reform.”

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  • kelleybee

    I call the networks decision not to broadcast the speeches tonight, in a word, “gutless”. The talking heads would rather spend the time trashing a 17 years old. The networks want to control what the voters see and hear.
    I must say that I do not know if the talking heads did trash talk the teenager and her mother during that time, but they have in the last few news cycles.

    [Yes, Kelleybee, clearly they're very afraid of allowing anything unfiltered to the public. So, they're wusses. Bigtime wusses, who cannot play fair. - admin]

  • tizzidale

    Personally, I thought the speeches were great. Lieberman’s especially.

  • Bender B. Rodriguez

    CNN just had a big discussion justifying Campbell Brown’s exercise in gotcha journalism.

    It’s disgusting. Everywhere you turn to (except Fox is occasionally OK). You can’t watch too long, or comment too much, or else the profanities will start to fly; just get me started, and it will be like I’m doing an impression of the mouth-foamers over at the lefty blogs.

  • SF

    I agree with Cathy, CSPAN really is the way to go. They take callers at the end of the evening, but that’s so much more tolerable than Matthews and Olbermann.

  • rcareaga

    Odd that the PBS affiliate here in the San Francisco Bay area apparently didn’t get the memo about not broadcasting Fred Thompson. Wouldn’t you think that this nest of Marxists would be the first to cut away to a speech by Raoul Castro? On the contrary: as I passed in and out of the room where my wife was morbidly riveted to to the TV, the much-reviled public broadcasting people appear to have covered the entire clammy spectacle. Go figure.

    [Funnily enough, Rand, I wasn't talking about PUBLIC TV, which you'll see many of the readers here appreciate, and which I don't think I've ever disparaged. I am not one of those conservatives who calls them "Marxists" either, so I wish you'd be fair to me. I was grousing about plain-old network television, which made a judgment that is fair game for criticism. I don't watch them either way. But since they covered "all" the speeches last week, they should have covered it - in the interest of "fair" and "professional" journalism, don't you agree? Frankly, I think they're afraid of anything they can't control, anymore. - admin]

  • tizzidale

    Campbell Brown is the epitome of the death of journalism.

  • Gina

    Watch the full Fred speech here. It was awesome. Way to hit Barack right where he campaigns (as opposed to where he lives, as the other side is doing). But let them keep up the slumber party gossip. I haven’t been this mad about something in a long time, and I will remember it. Video here.

    [Edited to admit link - admin]

  • Bender B. Rodriguez

    An interesting thing about PBS vs. everyone else –

    PBS was in widescreen. Luckily my TV screen is big enough to watch easily with letterbox bars, and it really is nicer to be able to see a wider view than they show in full screen.

    See, someone can say something nice about the coverage.

    Meanwhile . . . conservative and Republican commenters simply need to totally boycott appearing on CNN and MSNBC. Just stop going on them. And if they are already on, then just walk off.

  • Bender B. Rodriguez

    One last comment, and then I’m going to bed –

    Does the McCain campaign have Scott McClellan coaching their spokesmen?

  • gs

    Anchoress, the Campbell Brown interview wouldn’t load via your link, so I found it here.

    Afaic Brown was doing a poor imitation of Jane Curtin on the original SNL. Roseanne Roseannadanna would have destroyed her. Alas, John McCain doesn’t have Roseanne; he has Tucker Bounds.

    Brown brought up the criticism of Obama wrt foreign policy and said, “Explain to us why you think Governor Palin is ready to be Commander-in-Chief.” Bounds tried to change the subject twice: first to McCain and then to Obama. Then he brought up Palin’s National Guard authority. That walked right into a Brown follow-up (name a decision Palin made as CINC) which he was unable to answer. Strike three on Bounds.

    Presumably Brown was a hostile interviewer, but her question was an obvious one for which Bounds should have been prepared.

    I hope the Brown/Bounds confrontation was not the real reason McCain canceled with Larry King. If it was, it brings back to mind the whole too-thin-skinned-to-be-President thing.

    [Tucker Bounds is not too impressive, is he? He SHOULD have been ready for those questions, and in fact should have been ready for all manner of hostility. But I suspect the McCain crew is reeling a little bit from what they're seeing from the press and the left; he's always thought they were reasonable people who were his friends, right? Still, the bottom line is: Palin has to be able to sell herself. No one's spokesman can do that job. I think she can do it. Thanks for the tape! Brown really did come off rather like a Jane Curtain snotty witch, didn't she. What a combative tone she went in there with! But I must say, the tone of the McCain statement was all wrong. They can't "demand" that the press "come to terms" with Palin. They CAN demand, however, that the press give them a smattering of the respect they've given Obama and his team, McCain has certainly earned it, and they can even, perhaps, show the same "open mindedness" about Palin's "foreign expertise" as they do about Obama...if they want to. Clearly they don't want to. And that is fine. McCain (and hence his team) has still earned the right to their basic courtesy and respect. - admin]

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  • HNAV

    “Listening to her praise her husband, I am disappointed in the response of the crowd when she talks about what Bush has done for human life in Africa; even his own party does not understand the huge impact he has had there.”


    There are so many things that embarrass me about those within the ‘conservative dogma’ who seem blind to the many amazing aspects of the Bush Presidency.

    Mrs. Laura Bush is simply outstanding.

    I find many simply grew weak in the face of an unethical Press slant, and have bought into a misguided perception.

    Many who pushed for a number of the Bush Policies, failed to defend this fine Presidency, and we all suffer for it today, and perhaps it will remain a source of future troubles.

    GW BUSH deserves much better…

    I was not sold on the Thompson speech. In fact, there is something deeply wrong at this Convention.

    Something feels quite off, misguided, uncertain.

    The Convention feels quiet, uneasy, managed, uninspired, tired.

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