Saturday, January 24, 2009

Dowd and King

Maureen Dowd was the guest on Larry King Thursday night with her unique take on current events. The full transcript is here, but I've distilled some of the better quotes.

On Obama's start:

I think that Obama is getting a huge and deserved amount of credit for doing things that are normal things, but have not been done in politics here for a long time.
On the power of liquor as a poltitcal lubricant:
Remember Bob Strauss, he told George Bush Sr., just have some people for cocktails on the Truman Balcony. They will do whatever you want. They will help you get your tax plan passed and everything.
On BFF Caroline Kennedy:
I'm very disappointed, because I think she's really smart and is very -- had the nerve to endorse Obama, and she can push back against pressure. And I think the Senate could have used someone like that, because too often they don't have profiles in courage. They have profiles in conventional wisdom. I think she would have been great.
On social engineering:
Bush and Cheney had this huge social engineering scheme, where they were going to change the psyche of Americans, and make us less afraid of using force overseas after Vietnam. And they were going to change the psyche of the Middle East and make them scared to death of us.

But Obama also has a social engineering scheme. He said the other day he wants kids to have different priorities about service. He wants neighbors to have different priorities about how they treat each other. He wants to integrate the city of Washington with the political Oz of Washington, because in -- in the past, Washington has been a place where there's a high crime rate and a lot of poverty, and it all happens in the shadow of the Capital and the White House. And no one has ever treated it like a real city. And he's doing that right off the bat.
On Sarah Palin's future as talk-show host:
She has presence and I think she could make a comeback in politics, or she might get a show on Fox, competing against you, Larry. You never know.
On Secretary of State Clinton:
I think she could be a superstar. She said something very critical today when she had her first meeting with employees. She said she welcomes people pushing back against her and she welcomes open debate. If that is true, she could have an amazing run. But her history is to confuse dissent with disloyalty and bad management. So it depends if she's learned lessons from that in the past. She could be amazing.
On Barack dealing with Bill:
[Obama]'s trying to separate the little bit of tackiness and all this foreign money that Clintons get from their amazing ability to be great public servants. And if he can do that, then I think he can use them both effectively. But that's never been done before.
On whether it's fun to knock her subjects:
I feel like I owe it to the readers to try to pull back the veil and give them the honest version of what's going on. But it's not more fun. If Obama, as he does sometimes already, gets a little snippy with me about something I've written, you're thinking, oh God, the president of the United States is already annoyed with me.
Her ambitions with Barack:
I'm going to try and keep [Obama] on his toes, but I also want to celebrate the moment of trying to obey the Constitution again. So I took some champagne to the Lincoln Memorial at dawn the other day, just for that purpose.
There you have it. Watch your back, Barack because Maureen is watching you.

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